Above: One of Tourism Ireland’s ads in a Madrid metro station; 140 of these ads are on display this month around the Spanish capital.
Millions of commuters in Madrid are seeing ads for Ireland right now in metro stations across the city. These ads – 140 of them – feature the famous O’Neills pub in Allihies, renowned for its bright red façade.
Tourism Ireland is working again this year with one of the biggest brands in Spain – the tour operating arm of Spanish retailing giant El Corte Inglés – targeting potential holidaymakers in Madrid with 140 eye-catching billboard ads in metro stations around the Spanish capital, which are highlighting the Wild Atlantic Way, which begins in Co Cork; as well as, through radio and print ads and in-store promotions. Both campaigns have been timed to take advantage of late booking patterns among Spanish holidaymakers.
Spain is an important market for tourism to the island of Ireland, delivering about 265,000 visitors in 2013. Barbara Wood, Tourism Ireland’s manager in Spain, said: “2013 was a record year for Spanish visitors to Ireland and we are undertaking an extensive programme of promotions throughout 2014, to keep the momentum going and build on that growth. Our campaign with Viajes El Corte Inglés is an important element of that programme, to boost travel to the island of Ireland this year.”
The most recent figures available from the CSO for 2014 (for the February-April period) show growth of plus 11 per cent in Spanish visitors to Ireland over the same three-month period last year. Tourism Ireland’s busy programme of promotions in Spain includes online advertising on key websites, running until July, which will reach an estimated 16.5 million people. The organisation is also co-operating with airlines Aer Lingus, Ryanair and Iberia Express, to highlight great airfares to the island of Ireland. Tourism Ireland also operates a busy, year-round programme of PR activity, which includes visits to Ireland for key Spanish travel and lifestyle journalists.