Suffolk: New campaign aims to sell county to short-break visitors

The website that will be the portal for the Take Me to Suffolk campaign.

The website that will be the portal for the Take Me to Suffolk campaign. - Credit: Archant

A new tourism push is to be launched to try to capitalise on the success of Suffolk’s controversial “Curious County” campaign.

That campaign brought criticism from some of the county’s MPs and councillors – but is credited with boosting Suffolk’s tourism spend by more than £750,000.

At the start of next year a new online campaign “Take Me to Suffolk” is being launched aimed at attracting visitors from London, the home counties, and the east Midlands.

And the fiercest critic of the “Curious County” campaign – Bury St Edmunds MP David Ruffley – gave it a warm welcome.

Take Me to Suffolk will be officially launched early in the new year and is aimed at the short break market – hoping to attract visitors during the “shoulder” tourism periods of spring and autumn.

It was outlined to tourism managers and owners of hotels and guest houses at a special presentation at the John Peel centre in Stowmarket.

Amanda Bond, Brand Manager for Visit Suffolk said: “Our new campaign will transform the way we talk to visitors, reflecting the breadth of the county’s offering.

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“We know how important social networking sites are to consumer behaviour, so ‘Take me to Suffolk’ will educate and excite audiences about the many things they can see and do in the county.

“Following on from the success of The Curious County, we encourage tourism businesses from all corners of Suffolk to engage with this new campaign and view it as another innovative way to market themselves.”

The interactive map on the webpage will give visitors to Suffolk the chance to click on an area and find out what attractions there are to reflect their own particular interest.

It will also bring together various social network platforms including Twitter and Facebook to allow tourist businesses to show off what they have to offer.

Mr Ruffley felt the new campaign was just what the county needed: “The Curious County campaign attracted a lot of interest – although I felt it did not give the right image for this wonderful part of the country.

“But it is very necessary to use the internet to find new business – and this campaign seems to be just what is needed.

“Suffolk has a fantastic amount to offer visitors from the racing at Newmarket to the music at Aldeburgh – as well as the wonderful attractions in and around Bury St Edmunds itself. I am pleased to hear about this.”

Suffolk Coastal MP Dr Therese Coffey represents many of the resorts on the coast that rely on short-stay breaks during outside the main holiday period – communities like Southwold, Aldeburgh, Thorpeness and Orford.

She also welcomed the new campaign: “It sounds very innovative. Suffolk has a great deal to offer but the important thing is to get the message across. This sounds like a good way of doing that.”