A Holistic Approach to Omni-channel Marketing

Fáilte Ireland explore the approach to omni-channel marketing and how they produce connected, consistent and contextually relevant content.

Kathrin Chambers from Fáilte Ireland, Ireland's national tourism development authority, discussed the DMO's approach to omni-channel marketing and how they produce connected, consistent and contextually relevant content. The DMO's digital marketing team creates, optimises and promotes the ultimate visitor experience, using data-driven insights to grow domestic visitor numbers and revenue.

Kathrin Chambers from Fáilte Ireland, Ireland's national tourism development authority, discussed the DMO's approach to omni-channel marketing and how they produce connected, consistent and contextually relevant content. The DMO's digital marketing team creates, optimises and promotes the ultimate visitor experience, using data-driven insights to grow domestic visitor numbers and revenue.

Kathrin Chambers from Fáilte Ireland, Ireland's national tourism development authority, discussed the DMO's approach to omni-channel marketing and how they produce connected, consistent and contextually relevant content. The DMO's digital marketing team creates, optimises and promotes the ultimate visitor experience, using data-driven insights to grow domestic visitor numbers and revenue.


Visitor Centric Approach


In the ever-evolving tourism landscape of the tourism industry, where technological advancements and changing consumer behaviours demand constant adaptation, Fáilte Ireland embarked on a remarkable digital transformation journey. Driven by a bold vision to become the undisputed source of high-quality information for potential visitors, Fáilte Ireland embarked on a mission to reshape its digital presence, ensuring that every interaction with potential travellers would be informative, inspiring and memorable.


As the world grappled with the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, Fáilte Ireland's team demonstrated remarkable resilience and adaptability. They seized the opportunity to refine the DMO's digital strategy, laying the groundwork for a stronger and more resilient future.



At the heart of Fáilte Ireland's transformation is a deep commitment to understanding and catering to the needs and preferences of its target audience. By adopting a visitor-first approach, the DMO ensured that its digital presence would effectively connect with potential travellers, providing them with the information and inspiration they needed to plan and undertake memorable journeys in Ireland.


Harnessing the Power of Omni-Channel


Recognising the diverse media consumption habits of modern travellers, Fáilte Ireland embraced an omnichannel strategy, seamlessly integrating its various digital platforms to create a cohesive and unified experience across all touch points. They streamlined their four websites into a centralised digital ecosystem, ensuring consistent messaging and a user-friendly interface. This extended to social media, where Fáilte Ireland strategically utilised 20 channels to reach and engage target audiences, adapting its content and approach to suit the unique characteristics of each platform.


Social channels became a hub for inspiration and destination messaging, allowing Fáilte Ireland to engage with target audiences, showcasing the rich diversity, authentic experiences and captivating landscapes that Ireland has to offer.



Help, Hub, Hero Model


Fáilte Ireland uses a Help, Hub, Hero content model, enabling the different types of content to complement each other by inspiring visitors, creating intent and ultimately generating conversions. Such an approach ensures that visitors receive both practical and theme-specific inspiration alongside upper funnel brand awareness.


  • Help: Functional content designed and positioned to capture audiences at different stages of their journey and continuously optimised through a data-driven approach. This aims to inspire visitors, with content shared simultaneously as website articles and as social media videos.
  • Hub: Content designed to be pushed at regular intervals to specific target audiences and stimulate conversation through activating civic pride.
  • Hero: Campaign-level activity designed to spread brand awareness and increase engagement. This content is intended to be highly shareable and leave a lasting impression on a wide audience.



Data-Driven Marketing Approach


At Fáilte Ireland, creativity is enhanced by a data-driven mindset and a scientific approach. By meticulously analysing search trends and conducting gap analysis, they crafted content that aligned seamlessly with audience preferences. Their ingenious 'Wisdom Tracker' served as a centralised repository, capturing and sharing learnings across the team, ensuring consistency and efficiency.


A keen eye on search volumes unveiled a goldmine in an article on "glamping in Ireland." Revamping the piece to include more depth and detail helped capture a broader audience and propelled the article to the top of search results, leaping from page three to the second-ranked page. Within two months, organic traffic skyrocketed by 1,400%, while average page views soared 145% higher. Even more significant was the staggering 3,600% increase in trade referrals.


Fáilte Ireland also experimented with optimising their Instagram Reels by restructuring videos to make use of the platform's features. Instead of ending a video with a fade-out, they added a natural loop back to the start. This approach aimed to drive longer watch times and with Instagram's Replays metric helps identify quality engagements. Over 11,800 video replays were observed, totalling 24% of video views.  


These achievements serve as a resounding testament to the power of data-driven experimentation in unlocking positive outcomes. This data-centric approach ensured that Fáilte Ireland's content resonated with travellers at every stage of their journey, whether seeking inspiration, meticulously planning their itineraries or seeking practical information. Having multiple brands meant that the DMO could undertake these experiments on one channel and establish the impact before implementing them more broadly.

Hero Campaigns - Carfree Carefree


Fáilte Ireland also recognised the power of hero campaigns to spread brand awareness and generate engagement. Their 'Carfree Carefree' campaign, designed to promote car-free travel options, resonated with younger audiences, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic when car hire availability was limited. The campaign highlighted the convenience, sustainability and unique experiences that public transport could offer, encouraging travellers to explore Ireland in a new and environmentally friendly way.



The campaign observed over 900,000 video views, 120% above the original target. More than 7,000 articles were viewed, over double the target of 3,000, while the open rate of the electronic magazines was above the average CRM performance.

The Wild Atlantic Resurgence

Fáilte Ireland's Experience Brands are a collection of three regional experiences that are heavily promoted to support tourism growth in specific regions and highlight the diverse character of rural areas and inspire travel across the entire country:

  • Ireland's Ancient East
  • Ireland's Hidden Heartlands
  • The Wild Atlantic Way  

In 2023, Fáilte Ireland sought to re-appraise the Wild Atlantic Way, positioning it as an ideal short break destination in the shoulder season. Inspired by the success of the Irish film industry, leveraging the Oscar hype for The Banshees of Inisherin, they created a Hollywood-style movie trailer to showcase the region's breathtaking landscapes, rich culture and captivating stories. The campaign aimed to rekindle connections to the Wild Atlantic Way, reminding visitors of the region's allure and directing them to book experiences with local businesses along the iconic 2,500km coastal route.



The campaign surpassed its target of 150,000 views in three weeks, organically garnering an impressive 922,000 views within that timeframe. The video completion rate was 33%, double the YouTube average, with 51% watching the minute-long video through their TV. These results are particularly impressive given that they were achieved without the aid of paid media, underscoring the campaign's content-driven success. This demonstrates that compelling storytelling can captivate audiences without the need for significant financial investment.


The campaign's remarkable results extended beyond viewership. This converted into a 117% annual growth in trade referrals, showing how the interest generated was converted into travel bookings. The campaign also won the Global Video Content Campaign of the Year award at the Global Content Awards and Silver at the Digital Marketing Awards Ireland.


This resounding success serves as a beacon of inspiration for DMOs of all sizes, demonstrating the power of creating product concepts that resonate with visitors on multiple levels – brand, story and experience. It also highlights the effectiveness of repurposing content, proving that well-crafted storytelling can transcend time and remain impactful. Despite being over a decade old, the Wild Atlantic Way has reasserted its charm, generating interest through creative repositioning and compelling storytelling.


The Wild Atlantic Way campaign's emphasis on creating convenience in booking products and attracting visitors also draws parallels with Fáilte Ireland's ongoing "Digital that Delivers" initiative. This programme empowers businesses to leverage digital tools to streamline booking processes, enhance customer convenience and optimise marketing efforts to attract more visitors.


In essence, Fáilte Ireland's "Digital that Delivers" initiative serves as a crucial support system for businesses along the Wild Atlantic Way, enabling them to effectively capitalise on the marketing momentum generated. This synergy between the campaign and the initiative fosters a more dynamic and digitally adept tourism landscape, ensuring the long-term success of the Wild Atlantic Way as a premier short-break destination.


Other examples of innovative campaigns


As the importance of sustainability gains traction in the tourism industry, many DMOs are setting out innovative campaigns to promote sustainable tourism targeting different facets. Here are our favourites which draw on similar goals to the Car-free, Carefree and Wild Atlantic Way campaigns:


  • Marketing Greece, Epirus | Echoes of Eternity: This campaign used 3D audio to bring attention to the lesser-known region of Epirus in northwest Greece, fostering the redistribution of visitors towards this beautiful and culturally rich location.
  • Cape Town Tourism, Freedom to Wish: This campaign aimed to stimulate tourism recovery by giving locals the chance to discover the city's attractions and experience their bucket list dreams despite financial challenges. The initiative successfully showcased Cape Town's vibrant offerings and revitalised the local hospitality industry, while building brand ambassadors and emotional social media content to inspire future visits.
  • Catalan Tourist Board, Transformation Towards Responsible Tourism: This initiative aimed to transform the dynamic of Spain's number one tourist destination to a new model that encourages regional dispersal. Through the use of interactive technology that engaged visitors, they were made aware of hidden gems and a more diversified product experience to deconcentrate tourism and attract higher-quality visitors.


In a dynamic tourism landscape, these innovative initiatives exemplify how DMOs can foster sustainable tourism growth, revitalise local economies, enhance community well-being and showcase hidden gems while minimising environmental impact.

Key Takeaways

  • Have a culture of ongoing experimentation: Leverage data insights to turn negative trends into positive opportunities by optimising content so that it resonates better with audiences. Continuous testing and refinement lead to continuous improvement
  • Produce a variety of content types: Engaging inspirational 'hero' content is the aspiration of many DMOs to help them create strong brands. However, content strategies need to be supported by 'help' and 'hub' content to provide practical information to maximise conversions as well as to better target specific audiences
  • Omni-channel content drives incremental reach: Diversifying channels ensures broader reach and enhanced return on investment. Engaging content deserves to be found but requires effective distribution strategies to reach target audiences
  • Tailored content for each channel: While omni-channel content requires a consistent message and connected communications, to foster a seamless user experience content must be contextually relevant for each channel. This entails a strong understanding of the audiences for each platform and ensuring that content fits natively. Content should therefore be repurposed and edited so that it is appropriate for each channel.
Published on:
December 2023
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