We’re taking the ISO Tours on tour for the Tourism Council WA Conference 2021
I’m really excited to be sharing our experience of Hidden deTours’ ISO Tours with an even wider audience at the Tourism Council WA Conference in Geraldton next week!
From humble beginnings, to a campaign that reached the hearts of Perth people (and beyond) who were unable to venture out – to reaching over 91,000 Facebook users, the ISO Tours were fun (sure) but they also had a lasting impact on Hidden deTour’s business and Monique’s personal brand.
I think that’s the most interesting part. Actually there’s two ‘most interesting parts’
As a marketer, sometimes we lose sight of one of the main goals of marketing – easing the path to purchase.
We get bogged down in metrics we can measure. Sales (when it’s not technically our job to sell) and brand messaging.
People now feel like they know Monique. They aren’t Googling tours, they’re calling her and excitedly shouting “Mon!” at her over the phone, and on the street, like they are old friends. Why would they want to tour with anyone else than their old friend Mon?
We forget part of easing the path to purchase is simply zigging – being noticed! Which in this case was standing out by doing something completely opposite to the others, being reactive. Which brings me to point two.
Not all successful marketing campaigns require strategy. THERE! I said it.
Monique and I could not have planned this campaign. Well, we could have planned something similar, but it never would have taken off…this campaign was successful because it was in response to our situation.
In our short lockdown there were phone conversations about what people were missing out on, online chats with producers who were wondering what the future held for their businesses, and we all had a lot of time on our hands and not much to fill it with (except anyone trying to work from home and home school children – props to you, you talented weirdos) but most brand and businesses took time off.
Nothing wrong with that!
It’s hard to keep going amid a sea of refunds, re-booking questions that you can’t answer, and general feelings of dread while the money stops coming in and the bills keep coming.
Even if you could “pause” your business (I’ve heard this term used although I must say I don’t really know how you pause a business…) simply taking some time off is certainly understandable and probably very healthy.
Instead, we did 4 ISO Tours over 4 weeks, creating a total of 20 broadcasts LIVE to Facebook.
It was a hit!
The producers loved it because they were reduced to takeaways only (in the beginning limits even applied to the amount of alcohol you could buy at a time), not offering tastings, square metre restrictions, sign-ins, sanitiser and a lot of confusion and worry. We asked people to pre-purchase the products we’d be tasting and many people did – one group drove around in front of us during the Bickley Wine ISO Tour and stopped at each winery to get takeaways before we got there and went home to watch the re-play.
So this did result in actual sales for our venues, what a win!
Punters loved it because they were feeling a bit cooped up and they could experience a very organic feeling tour with an experienced guide who clearly knows her venues well – and the relationships show through. This is part of what made this such a long-term success, if Monique was an average tour guide this wouldn’t have done such wonders for her business – but you really get to see what it’s like being on tour with her.
The press loved it because there was nothing for them to talk about. No events, no sports, no movies…nothing. So we got pretty much covered by all media in the beginning (this changed as the lockdown restrictions progressed, but we’d already been noticed by then)
Check ’em out
You can see the tours on Monique’s Facebook page, and they’re also on IGTV and the Hidden deTours YouTube channel.
Here’s a quick snippet from one of our slides just to show you the imprint these tours made on Facebook, from a page that at the start, was at around 1,800 likes.
ISO Wine Tour – Bickley Valley
- Tonon Winery & Vineyard
- Carldenn Homestead
- Plume Estate
- Hainault Winery
- La Fattoria
ISO Distillery Tour
- Old Young’s
- Swan Valley Gin Co.
- Sin Gin
- High Spirits
- Wandering Distillery
ISO Beer Tour
- Bright Tank
ISO Cider Tour
- Roleystone Brewing Co (at Raeburn Orchards)
- Naked Apple Cider
- Core Cider House
- Carmel Cider Co
Tourism Council WA Conference
So we’re off to tell a room full of tourism conference attendees about our tours – how it worked, why we did it, and how it’s had a lasting effect on the business.
In essence – taking our tours on tour!
We even get to road trip with our pal Adam Barrell of So Media Group, who’s going to speak about using Chat Bots in tourism marketing. I’ve seen a sneak peek of his slides and they are KILLER – so if you’re heading along to the conference make sure you sit in on Adam’s breakout (don’t worry – it’s not in the same session as ours so you can do both)
So I’ll be OOO next week as I soak up the conference vibes and stress about not being nervous until I get super nervous.
After it’s all done I might share the slides with you all if there’s interest.
PS – the shirt I’m wearing in our photo from a year ago in the feature image of this post? I can wear it as a dress now – just sayin’