Malta, 2nd April 2014
In the past few years, there has been a clear shift as to how travellers research their next holiday. In the past, guide books were the prime source of information. These days, an increasing number of travellers conduct their research on the Internet, seeking tips and recommendations from websites, blogs and social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. According to a recent study by Google, 85 per cent of all travellers are already researching their destinations online. It is here, in the online space, that travel bloggers are making waves by creating compelling content based on personal experience. With their rapidly growing blogs, extensive social networks and multimedia skills, travel bloggers are influencing travel decisions like never before, making them ideal ambassadors for destinations and other travel-related brands.
It is for this reason that iambassador is proud to announce a collaboration with the Malta Tourism Authority. Following the success of the Emilia Romagna #Blogville project, now in its third year, iambassador is excited to bring this ground-breaking concept to Malta. Dubbed the ‘Blog Island’ #MaltaisMore project, travel bloggers and videographers from around the world will be invited to experience the diversity of Malta in accordance with their individual interests.
The project will be split into two phases: the first phase will be from 8th April 2014 until 25th May 2014. Each phase will be divided into five-day periods. During each period, four bloggers will be hosted by the Malta Tourism Authority who will organise two cool activities for the bloggers. The rest of the period will be free for each blogger to roam and enjoy the island.
The Malta Tourism Authority, together with the iambassador team have found a gorgeous Palazzo in Valletta which will be the bloggers accommodation for the first phase of #MaltaisMore. The second phase will take place for six weeks in October – November 2014.
The #Blogville concept, whereby bloggers pick and choose activities that are aligned with their individual interests and are based in one accommodation, was coined by iambassadors Melvin Boecher and Kash Bhattacharya in collaboration with Nicholas Montemaggi from the Emilia Romagna Tourism Board. In the past two years, the Blogville project has attracted more than 100 bloggers from around the world to Emilia Romagna. This has resulted in more than 500 blog posts, 7,000+ photos and videos, a reach of 11 million people and 220 million opportunities-to-see across multiple social media channels. The bloggers and their content have received national press coverage in Italy as well as in renowned publications such as Glamour and Cosmopolitan, and US television.
“We hope to emulate the success of the Emilia Romagna Blogville project in Malta by facilitating the production of high-quality, multimedia (blogs, photography and video) content that creates awareness, inspires and drives engagement with consumers around the world”, says Keith Jenkins, Chief Executive Officer of iambassador. “I’m convinced that this success will be achieved through our close partnership with the Malta Tourism Authority whom have shown great vision and determination in embracing new digital marketing strategies.”
Founded in 2011 by Keith Jenkins (CEO), iambassador is an international network of travel bloggers and currently counts more than 50 leading travel, food and lifestyle bloggers in its core team, as well as award-winning television and video producers. In addition, iambassador has partnerships with travel blogger networks in Germany, France, United Kingdom, Brazil and China, allowing it to tap into a broader pool of specialists.
iambassador offers a suite of innovative, value-adding products and services. These include creating attractive marketing concepts, blog trip planning and advisory, social media campaign planning and execution, video production and seminars. The iambassador team has a proven track record of cooking up new and exciting blog trip concepts and social media marketing campaigns. Examples include the #GoJordan social media campaign, in partnership with the Jordan Tourism Board, during which almost two million people were reached in two days; the hugely successful #Blogville project, a ground-breaking partnership with the Emilia Romagna tourism board; #LoveCapeTown, a collaboration with the Cape Town Tourism Board with a focus on crowdsourcing local travel tips and ideas; and the historic #MeetSouthAfrica campaign with South Africa Tourism.
Each of these campaigns reached millions of people around the world via a multitude of social media channels and blogs. Furthermore, the bloggers and their content have often been featured in other traditional media channels such as magazines, newspapers and television.
Through its partnership with online monitoring and insights company, BrandsEye.com, iambassador is able to provide in-depth monitoring and reporting services to its clients. With relatively modest budgets, past iambassador campaigns have generated an advertising value equivalent (AVE) of more than EUR 2 million.
In 2014, iambassador will take travel blogging to greater heights at The Social Travel Summit, to be held in Leipzig, Germany, between 15-16 April. The Summit will bring together 50 leading travel bloggers from across the globe for two days of learning, brainstorming and networking with tourism industry representatives.