East of England Tourism Awards 2021-2022: Meet the Marketing Campaign of the Year finalists

The Best of Suffolk team in the Farmhouse Kitchen

The Best of Suffolk team are eager to share their knowledge of the county in marketing campaigns - Credit: Best of Suffolk

The finalists have been announced for the Marketing Campaign of the Year award, sponsored by Pear out of Home, at the East of England Tourism Awards 2021-2022.

The award recognises tourism businesses and attractions that are adopting a proactive approach to marketing and who truly understand their audience.

Best of Suffolk

Founded by Naomi and Alex Tarry in 2006, Best of Suffolk in Badingham has over 380 holiday cottages across the county. The team all live in Suffolk and are eager to share their knowledge with guests, regularly featuring marketing activity including the recent Tried and Tested blog series.

These blogs feature team members and their families showcasing a Best of Suffolk property, with recommendations for things to do nearby, local businesses to explore and more.

The judges said that this series is testament to the power of adding a human element to a campaign and a great example of how to tap into local audiences with a very small budget.

Jimmy Doherty of Jimmy's Farm & Wildlife Park, Suffolk

Jimmy's Farm & Wildlife Park returned to our screens across lockdown attracting a large increase in visitors upon reopening - Credit: Jimmy's Farm & Wildlife Park

Jimmy's Farm & Wildlife Park

Celebrating its 20-year anniversary in 2022, Jimmy’s Farm & Wildlife Park in Wherstead, Suffolk is home to over 80 different species and breeds and welcomes visitors from across the country.

First appearing on television in 2004, Jimmy’s Farm returned to our screens in 2020. Viewers watched the team welcome a giant anteater, navigate lambing season and intercept escaping meerkats, all while managing the pressures of lockdown. The positive response led to an impressive jump in visitors the following year.

Most Read

The judges said that the audience’s love of the farm clearly extended beyond the TV show and praised the business’ interaction on social media which helped to keep the buzz around the farm alive.

Avocets at Pensthorpe Natural Park, Fakenham

The judges commended Pensthorpe Natural Park for its creative and inclusive campaign - Credit: Steve Adams

Pensthorpe Natural Park

Pensthorpe Natural Park in Fakenham, Norfolk is a 700-acre family-friendly nature reserve that provides multiple opportunities to get closer to wildlife, through a number of trails, bird hides and boardwalks.

Last summer, the park launched a multi-layered campaign which combined storytelling, activities, social media and print to encourage visitors to spend a day at Pensthorpe. The Secret Garden Wildlife Trail allowed visitors to stroll through the park whilst engaging with interactive elements and enjoying the freedom of natural spaces.

The judges commended Pensthorpe for its creative and inclusive campaign that targeted a post-lockdown audience during a time that still had many restrictions, enabling it to engage eager visitors that needed to be stimulated.

The Potters Resorts Hotel exterior, Great Yarmouth

The judges said that Potters Resorts highlighted the power of human connection in marketing - Credit: Potters Resorts

Potters Resorts

A family-owned business in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, Potters Resorts is an all-inclusive resort that strives to offer a contemporary and exclusive product with consistent family values.

Throughout the pandemic, Potters continued to entertain its social media community, gaining some 11,000 followers and raising over £20,000 for various causes. Through building this strong relationship with customers, the business sold out the entire summer in less than two weeks upon reopening.

The judges said that Potters demonstrated exemplary customer experience when customers were outside of the business as well as inside it, and highlighted the power of human connection in marketing, as well as the value of nurturing an organic social community.

ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure's animatronic T-Rex Titan, Lenwade Norfolk

ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure’s marketing team orchestrated the mock escape of the park’s animatronic T-Rex Titan in 2021 - Credit: ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure

ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure

An 85-acre adventure park in Lenwade, Norfolk, ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure offers a host of attractions and events for families. Acquired by the Goymour family in 2006, the business has seen rapid growth and new attractions and welcomes an average of 275,000 visitors a year.

When lockdown measures eased in 2021, ROARR!’s marketing team orchestrated the mock escape of the park’s animatronic T-Rex, Titan, in order to attract visitors across the summer holidays.

Following a meeting with the escapee himself at the judging meeting, the judges called ‘Titan has escaped’ a fun and innovative marketing activation which aligned with the park’s objectives and made imaginative use of a limited budget.

The winners of the East of England Tourism Awards 2021-2022 will be announced at a black-tie event held at Imperial War Museum Duxford on Thursday, February 24.