Representing Our Client at the British Tourism and Travel Show 2021

At the British Tourism and Travel Show 2023

We represented Visit Dean Wye at the British Tourism and Travel Show at the NEC in Birmingham from 22-23 September 2021.

The British Tourism & Travel Show is for tour operators, group travel organisers and travel trade professionals who want to discover exciting, new ideas for their trips, tours and itineraries. With more exhibitors than any other UK travel trade event it attracts teams from all over the UK and we were proud to be there to represent our beautiful Dean Wye.

We joined forces with Cotswolds Tourism, Marketing Cheltenham and Marketing Gloucester to create a Gloucestershire powerhouse, working together to showcase the attractions, tours, food & drink and places to stay across the area.

We had some really interesting meetings with school groups, bespoke and group tour organisers as well as listening to industry leaders with talks and keynotes from well known figures in tourism.

In advance of the show we created a comprehensive travel trade guide to the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley which we loaded onto USBs which we gave away at the show. You can see it on the Visit Dean Wye website here: https://www.visitdeanwye.co.uk/travel-trade

Taking The Wye Tour 250 Years On

Wye Tour

250 years ago, the birth of British Tourism began right here in the Wye Valley. Today a group of us retraced the steps of the man who kicked it all off, William Gilpin, on The Wye Tour 2020 with the Wye Valley AONB.

We started before the mists had burned off but slowly blue sky appeared and the sun shone for most of the day on many incredibly beautiful and inspiring scenes. It’s not hard to see why this area inspired Gilpin so, and brought so many artists, poets and writers to take ‘The Tour’ and see it for themselves.

From the beginning of the tour in Ross-on-Wye, we journeyed to Goodrich Castle, Symonds Yat, Monmouth, Tintern and finally Chepstow. A driving tour instead of by boat as Gilpin would have done in 1770, we managed to see in a few hours what it would have taken him two days to explore. Stairs, walkways and bridges have been added, the industry which especially would have been seen in Tintern is gone, but so much of what he saw remains, thankfully, unchanged in its natural beauty.

What a truly spectacular area this is, we’re still blown away with it ourselves. It’s a privilege to live and work here. We had a fascinating day exploring the Wye Valley today as part of the 2020 celebrations.

Find out more at: https://www.wyevalley-nl.org.uk/the-wye-tour/

Happy New Year and Here’s to 2020

Happy New Year all!

We always like to end a year with a review – best bits, client wins, new clients, achievements, successes etc. But 2019 was such a blockbuster year for us that we’re starting 2020 in full throttle. So instead, here are four of our clients’ top images from 2019 showing the fantastic years they all had.

A quick calculation shows us that we created and posted over 5,000 social media posts for our clients in 2019… wow. So here’s to making 2020 the best year yet for our clients.

BBC Countryfile Visit the Forest of Dean

Working for Forest of Dean and Wye Valley Tourism is never boring! Leaf Peeping has taken off massively, the autumn colours are looking incredible already and on Sunday BBC Countryfile did a whole show about the Forest of Dean. So proud and so thrilled to see this area getting so much positive recognition. About time…

The Countryfile episode was filmed just a few weeks ago so the developing autumn colours can be seen, there is a great piece on Puzzlewood which presenter Margherita Taylor was clearly impressed with, the brilliant Forest of Dean Green Team are included, Matt Baker visits the Foresters’ Forest and the Rewild Project and sees all the amazing work they are doing to preserve Forest traditions and Lydbrook Brass Band’s summer Proms in the Quarry is covered too!
​Even with all of that, the beautiful Forest itself was the real star, with some stunning aerial footage from AeroVue which really showed the huge expanse of woodland, the hills, valleys, lakes, paths and the wide variety of trees which are many different colours at the moment.

We were thrilled to see such wonderful coverage and such positive reactions from the presenters Matt Baker and Margherita Taylor. We love working in and for this very unique and special area.

In case you missed it on Sunday here is the link to watch the show again on BBC iPlayer.

We’re Rural Business Awards Finalists 2019

We’re Rural Business Awards Finalists for the second year running!

Wow what a privilege it is to be in the running for these prestigious awards… again.

It’s fantastic to see so many brilliant local businesses included here in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley this year too. Congratulations to Float in the Forest, Wanderlust Camper Co, Big House Holiday Lets, Go Ape Forest of Dean and Bespoke Brewing Co. who are all up for awards this year. We are up for Best Rural Digital, Communications or Media Business in the South West with the awards ceremony taking place in October. As always we are just thrilled to be finalists.

Marketing Campaign for the Removal of the Severn Bridge Tolls

Much more than just river crossings, the Severn Bridges created an invisible barrier between the South West of England and the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley on the other side. With the removal of the tolls in December 2018 we worked on a campaign to increase knowledge of the area to those in the South West with specific targeting to those around Bristol and Bath (over 1 million people). The campaign involved:

  • The creation of a dynamic and vibrant film celebrating the area
  • A targeted advertising campaign
  • Website content
  • Social media campaigns
  • PR and influencer visits
  • User generated content and a competition

The campaign focused on the themes of The Forest of… and our pillars of adventure, fun, nature, taste and heritage.

You can see the video on Facebook here.

Happy New Year from ALS Marketing

Happy 2019 one and all. 2018 was a fantastic year for us, we’ve been so busy for a start. We’re working with such a wonderful client list and working on lots of exciting projects, many of which have been here in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley. We’ll update this blog just as soon as we can with more information but meanwhile we’re busy providing our clients with our award-winning marketing services!

Oh and we love what we do! Follow us on Twitter to see our latest news.

Branding Overhaul for Vegan Bakery in the Forest of Dean

We’ve loved working with the brilliant Lottie’s Vegan Bakery on their rebrand.

Lottie’s is a vegan bakery based here in the Forest of Dean. From our first meeting when Lottie brought a selection of cakes and treats for us to try, we knew this was going to be a great working relationship!
Lottie was looking to inject some colour and character into her year-old business which had taken off faster than she was able to keep up with. Her products have been a real hit with vegans and non-vegans and she was so busy baking that she never got round to getting her branding done properly!

We completed a rebrand for her including a new logo, colour scheme, website layout and social media package. She was thrilled with the results and was able to focus on what she does best – baking! Another great Forest of Dean business worked with.

Why Valuable Content is So Valuable: the Psychology of Marketing

We’ve had a student with us over the summer who is working towards a degree in psychology with the aim of working in marketing when he graduates. It’s been great to see his passion and enthusiasm for the field and also to hear his ideas and see his work, we’re sure he’ll go far. 

Here is his guest post for us:
WHY VALUABLE CONTENT IS SO VALUABLE: THE PSYCHOLOGY OF MARKETING
​The endgame of a marketing strategy is for as many potential customers as possible to be aware of a business’s product or service, putting them in a position to make the call on whether they should spend their money on it. In order to achieve this, your business must be visible and your content should provide value. The importance of visibility and providing value comes from a number of psychological factors.

The reason why it’s important to be visible in a variety of different formats – including social media, email, print or audio – lies in a psychological phenomenon known as the frequency illusion (or the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon). There’s no doubt that at some point in your life you will have experienced this. For example: a friend tells you about their new shoes, you’ve never seen or heard of them before, you don’t think much of it at the time but soon you start to notice them on every other person and in every shop window. This is due to selective attention: once you’ve seen these shoes, although unaware of what you’re doing, you look out for those shoes and ignore all other shoes. This is a dream position for the business – the customer is not only seeing their product regularly but is also ignoring the competition. A second psychological factor then comes into play: confirmation bias. With every new sighting of the product, it further cements the consumer’s perception that it has gained popularity overnight, and with each viewing, they begin to perceive its increased importance.

As you can see, visibility is crucial but just as crucial is providing content that’s valuable. Providing valuable content works in the same way as giving out freebies – it gets your brand noticed, and that initial brand awareness is crucial. Whether writing blog posts, press articles or social media posts, creating adverts, generating PR or recording videos or podcasts, a business can reach a broad audience and generate many new leads. If this content is all full of useful information that provides value to the consumer it calls into action the social norm of reciprocity: the business has provided value in terms of information and/or entertainment, and the consumer is more likely to provide value in return in terms of engagement, brand loyalty and of course, sales.

So keep providing valuable content, getting your business in front of the consumer in as many ways as possible and remember to always focus on the endgame: what is your goal and how are you going to achieve it?

Thanks to Max Didcote for the post and we wish you well on your course and in your future career!