Knowledge eXchange in Action - A Review of 2016

14th December 2016

Categories: Our News

As we approach the festive season and look forward to what is promising to be an exciting new year, it's a good time to reflect on the milestones of 2016 and review the successes that we've achieved, thanks to the support of our customers and partners.

At the start of the year we launched our new KX branded newsletter (Knowledge eXchange) featuring all the latest new arrivals, contract wins and developments from New Mind tell | Us, NVG and the wider Tourism Media Group.

The Knowledge eXchange concept isn't just confined to our newsletter. The projects delivered during 2016 have all benefited from the sharing of information and experiences gathered whilst working with hundreds of DMOs across the globe. We believe that this strategy, together with the extended knowledge base provided by the combined forces of the Tourism Media Group and our ongoing commitment to the continual development of our e-tourism solution, has paid dividends during 2016.

It's been a busy year for all the teams within the Tourism Media Group.  Here's a recap of some of the key events:

New Frontiers...

The Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah became our first destination in the Middle East and New Mind | tellUs was invited to contribute our expertise to an ambitious plan to grow the destination's tourism economy.  World Travel Market London in November was an apt venue for the launch of the new website before a global audience.

We also explored more unchartered territory and welcomed the fascinating Falkland Islands onboard.  We look forward to delivering the destination's digital strategy when the new site goes live in early 2017.

Collaborative Projects...

The collective expertise of New Mind | tellUs and NVG was enlisted by Cumbria Tourism for the development of the new destination site. Launched in August 2016, we feel that the resulting site is great combination of best practice design and innovative functionality.

More joint projects are in progress too including a definitive resource for visitors to the Peak District and Derbyshire and a suite of new sites for Destination Staffordshire.

More new sites in the UK...

The first site to be launched in 2016 was for one of the UK's leading destinations, the Cotswolds, with a remit to raise the profile of both domestic and international tourism in the area whilst conveying its beauty and abundant attractions.

Great team work won the day for Visit Surrey resulting in a vibrant new site and a glowing reference from the DMO's team and a major joint project between New Mind | tellUs and the in-house team at Visit County Durham produced a bold, impactful design to appeal to the destination's target markets.

Two of our top performing destinations committed to major redevelopment during the year. One of the UK's favourite seaside resorts, Visit Newquay tasked us to develop a new online presence and the site was launched in July, much to the client's delight.  A show of confidence from Visit Dorset followed as New Mind | tellUs were commissioned to revamp the destination site originally launched in 2011.  The new site will be launched early next year.

The striking new digital gateway to North Wales was launched in May with the aim of boosting tourism by £200m and inspiring visitors to explore its world-class tourism offer. Meanwhile Visit Plymouth started preparing for the 400 year anniversary of the Mayflower sailing with a visual extravaganza showcasing the city's vibrant offering.

Our affordable Tourism Essentials solution continued to be a hit throughout the year with several new projects being completed including sites for Discover Dartmouth and Epping Forest District.

We rounded off the year with the launch of a brand new site for Visit Devon, presenting visitors with one unified platform for the county's fantastic tourism offering, and a new site for the Isle of Man positioning the Island as a distinctive year-round destination.

There's a few major projects currently in the pipeline too including a full place marketing solution in progress for Marketing Manchester promoting Greater Manchester as a place to visit, meet, invest, do business, study and live.

And from NVG...

2016 started with a bang as Visit Eastbourne announced its decision to redevelop its visitor site, plus eight new channel sites and two apps.  The main destination site was launched in September, hot on the heels of a series of other projects for the town including a dedicated Eastbourne Airbourne site for the world-famous airshow and a new app featuring two self-guided trails for Eastbourne and the South Downs.

NVG's flexible web-in-a-box option was the perfect solution for Visit Essex and its destination partners including Southend, Saffron Walden, Colchester, Brentwood and Maldon District.

Long standing client, Visit Hull and East Yorkshire prepared to be propelled into the spotlight as UK City of Culture 2017 launching a new responsive site to exploit its status. All the ingredients for the perfect break were featured a new destination site for the beautiful destination of Suffolk.

The team rounded the year off with the completion of a new site for Visit Norfolk and a new app for West Norfolk.

Meanwhile in Scandinavia...

The first phase of a major project involving the development of a regional site for Fjord Norway, plus 12 individual destination sites was completed as made its debut.  A further four new sites for the spectacular region followed with sites for Bergen, Sognefjord, Voss and Sunnfjord.  Five months later, VisitBergen announced a 35% boost in online bookings much to everyone's delight.

Following the award of UNESCO world heritage status, the city of Notodden celebrated the accolade with a new channel site.  A fitting new look for Nordfjord offering year-round adventures in unique surroundings was delivered and a combined solution for the stunning destinations of Stavanger and Ryfylke provided visitors with one easy access resource.

Innovation & Development...

Our policy of continuous innovation means that we never stop thinking about ways that our e-tourism solution can be improved and enhanced.  Again this is a two-way process with some of the ideas originating from our clients and others resulting from ongoing research into the latest technological trends in the travel industry and beyond. Our clients have benefitted from the release of a number of new developments during 2016:

Firstly, our new dynamic map functionality aimed to take trip planning to a new level, with Telemark Canal being the first to benefit from the new improved visual elements featured.

In July the launch of DMS v3.4 introduced some great new functionality and features, with rollout commencing in the UK and subsequently in Scandinavia. Our Polling Engine continued to be a hit too, allowing our clients' accommodation providers to present availability from multiple booking channels.  Technical integrations with LateRooms and Expedia have expanded the range of OTAs available to book through, and we believe that we now provide the most comprehensive and flexible range of booking solutions on the market.

As part of our new release for DMS v3.5 we simplified the production of Provider Stats for our customers accommodation, attraction and events products, saving them time, improving efficiency and reducing costs.

Our Norwegian client, Nordfjord was the first to benefit from our improved route planning for outdoor activities allowing outdoor enthusiasts to find the perfect route to match their needs and ability.

Finally, a new partnership with CAN Digital Solutions has been initiated in response to the growth in digital advertising over the last two years.  The resulting Visit Ad Network joint venture is still in its infancy but we'll have some exciting news on how our clients can benefit when we officially launch early next year.

As you can see, we've achieved a lot this year but none of it would have been possible without the support and co-operation of our clients.  We would like to thank you and wish you all the best for Christmas and the New Year.


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