Last month, we launched the #buylocal campaign which celebrates and supports the entrepreneurial spirit of the KZN South Coast. This initiative, which forms part of the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition’s Buy Back SA initiative, encourages the support of our local businesses to grow existing investments and boost job creation. The benefits of buying local are far-reaching, positively impacting social, environmental, and health factors while ensuring our economy remains resilient. We’re encouraging our SCTIE members to sign up, free of charge, for Buy Local membership. Criteria for membership include:
- At least 50% of the cost of production or services must be incurred with the KZN South Coast;
- The product or service must meet high-quality standards; and
- The business must create or intend to create employment opportunities for people on the KZN South Coast.
We’re showcasing our seaside attractions, from Blue Flag beaches to world-class dive sites, as a valuable product for the business community as well as holidaymakers. There is a big trend in business-meets-leisure travel, and with our incredible natural assets, golf courses, conferencing facilities, and teambuilding activities. We believe this campaign will attract the business community to the KZN South Coast. Take a look at some of the sites we’ve shared with the public here.
Considering the success of this campaign, we were excited to extend it further by encouraging visitors to stay for longer through member specials that are shared on our social media platforms and destination website. The campaign also shares off-peak deals for January to March, as well as early bird specials which are regularly updated.
We continue to build relationships with key media and gain positive exposure by hosting fam trips at our tourist locations. This is a really productive way to network in a relaxed environment while giving an exclusive, first-hand experience to influential personalities. After the experience, media were supplied with press releases, high-resolution images, and other relevant marketing collateral to maximise exposure.
SABC Morning Live Fam Trip
We hosted SABC Journalist Sibusiso Tembe from 19 to 22 December for exposure on SABC Morning Live ahead of the festive season. This was a great chance to position ourselves as a year-round leisure destination of choice in South Africa. Our diverse nature and outdoor experiences, beaches, and rich heritage offerings, were all featured on the popular morning show.
From 3 to 5 February, we hosted SABC 3 Trendz Travel TV and Isolezwe newspaper. Both media chose to focus on the recently renovated Kingfisher Lakeside Retreat in Trafalgar, with the location receiving full-page coverage in Isolezwe’s Valentine’s Day issue. The TV crew also chose to focus on the new Thabby’s Wellness Spa in Umtentweni with both crews enjoying an outing to Lake Eland.
Post Meetings Africa Fam Trip KZN Tour
From 2 to 4 March, we hosted 11 buyers who attended the Meetings Africa trade show at some of our key destinations for future package consideration. This included spa treatments and relaxation at top venues, fine dining, and extreme outdoor adventures.
Post Meeting Africa Mega Fam Trip hosted by South African Tourism
We participated in a large-scale fam trip from 25 February to 5 March that included tourism stops at Gauteng, Limpopo, the Western Cape and KZN. This was a great chance to show buyers the extensive national offerings and package opportunities across bleisure, adventure, self-care, and heritage tourism.
Religious Tourism Media Launch
On 14 March, we will host media at the launch of our Religious Tourism Package with stops at the Cappuchin Way in Pumula, Maristela Mission in Oshabeni, Assisi Mission in Oshabeni and Maria Trost Mission in St Faiths.
From 27 February to 1 March, we will be participating in this valuable two-day trade show where we engage directly with the most influential buyers from across the globe. This will include the Business Events Trade Show, owned by South African Tourism, which enables the growth of the business events industry on the continent, which is a great opportunity for us to market our #bleisure tourism campaign.