Cape Town Tourism faced multiple challenges between mid-2015 and mid-2016, some as a result of long-term issues such as the uncertainty around visas and birth certificates, the fluctuating exchange rate and tourists’ unfounded fears of contracting ebola.
We created opportunities to learn, grow and reinvent ourselves. We developed a top-class website, we released the Love Cape Town Neighbourhoods video series, and we launched the second year of the Hello Weekend campaign. And our fresh new take on branding aided in updating and reinventing our marketing while positioning ourselves as a visitor-centric organisation.
The real winners in any business are those who empower the youth to be successful, and we at Cape Town Tourism have been privileged to experience the way this ethos plays out in our industry. Although we have our work cut out for us, dedicated people on the ground are actively pursuing the goal of transformation.
The Board Development Fund has been of practical benefit to small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) for another year, with the addition of a third beneficiary thanks to sponsorship from Thebe Tourism. Grit, determination and sheer willpower have seen us overcoming difficulties to push our businesses into a new season – one we’re certain will come with challenges of its own, but also with great successes.
The key to survival and success in our industry is reinvention. As an organisation, we have sought to apply this to ourselves over the past year, with our new website, branding and marketing tools. By the time the Travel like a Local trend was being discussed globally, we were already able to prove our relevance with the release of the first in our Love Cape Town Neighbourhoods video series, which has attracted many viewers and attention in the media.
In our efforts to encourage visitors to treat Cape Town as an exciting destination 365 days a year, we brought back the Hello Weekend campaign, this year partnering with kulula.com. Our members got on board and we believe it has been of benefit. Wherever we have the opportunity, we share news of innovation and entrepreneurship, and the stories of those working in the industry to provide a world-class offering to our visitors.
With our new website we anticipate not just increased traffic, but traffic that leads to visitors accessing relevant information that showcases more of what we have to offer. There were moments in the last year when we doubted ourselves in the face of challenges beyond our control, but we remain steadfast in our conviction that we have turned a corner and we will see visitor numbers continuing to rise. Sincere thanks to all our collaborating members and to our passionate staff.
The travel industry is by no means immune to the changes broughtabout by innovation. It’s now time for businesses to adapt or face the risk that they are no longer relevant.
CAPE TOWN TOURISM AIMS TO BE A LEADER IN REINVENTION IN ORDER TO REMAIN RELEVANT.
Cape Town is the best city for the fourth consecutive year.
Cape Town is the number-one food city in the world
Cape Town is the luxury city destination of the year for the second consecutive year
Hotel Verde is the winner for Africa and the Middle East
Cape Town is ranked number 10
Cape Town is one of 22 cities included
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is the International Garden of the Year
Cape Town is number 18
Cape Town is number 2
Cape Town is number 9
A new department was created to focus on membership acquisition and retention. This new team ensures that members receive the highest-quality service and administration.
We have rolled out two new membership tiers, the Classic and the Premium, to simplify and enhance the benefits of our membership programme.
CTT Connect hosted 8 events and saw a vast increase in the number of members participating and the new contacts made. Our total guests attending events rose from 150 in 2014/15 to 350 in 2015/16.
During the winter period of 2015, our team went on 175 product visits, gaining first-hand experience of member products and enabling them to accurately and enthusiastically sell Cape Town and its offerings.
Our mobile information centre, Thando, attended tradeshows, including Indaba in Durban. Our mobile team travelled not only within Cape Town but also nationally to share the stories and products of Cape Town.
The benchmark of 90% (2% up on last year) was achieved, measured through mystery shoppers.
In line with our approach of going to where the visitors are, we opened a VIC in ever-popular Long Street in conjunction with City Sightseeing. This VIC has far exceeded our revenue targets and foot-traffic expectations. We also refurbished our Kirstenbosch VIC, also situated in a high-traffic area.
We hosted a well-attended Visitor Safety Forum to promote responsible tourism; attendees were able to share their ideas on visitor safety in Cape Town. The keynote speaker was Ian Janse van Vuuren from Tourism Business Council (TBCSA) who presented the Tourism Safety Initiative (TSI) which was launched at the forum.
This data was extrapolated by Cape Town Tourism from the Travelport Marketing Information Data Tapes (MIDT) for Cape Town International Airport for 2014. We thank the Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) for making the information available to the Cape Town tourism industry.
Source: Airports Company South Africa (ACSA), TravelportMarketing Information Data Tapes (MIDT) for Cape Town International Airport, 2014.
To stay at the forefront of the global tourism landscape, we developed a refreshed brand identity to align with global best practice, with the industry and visitor-facing identities speaking with one voice.
Our three-tier approach to trade marketing enabled us to increase our presence from 10 to 16 international marketing platforms, focusing on promoting our off-peak periods. These markets included Brazil, USA, China and Turkey (HalalTourism). Our new CT 365 marketing material and trade directory, showcasing member products and low-season activities, were a hit with trade buyers.
We have a full house of 10 executive partners, to whom we delivered in excess of R3 million in value:
Table Mountain Cableway
Petousis Group (Vineyard Hotel, Townhouse Hotel and Oudewerf Hotel)
Home from Home
Domestically and internationally, we distributed 200 000 copies of Cape Town’s Official Visitors’ Guide. The guide was loaded as an e-book on www.capetown.travel, and garnered a total of just over 8 500 views. Total advertising sales for the guide reached R1.84 million, an increase of 16% YOY.
We provided promotional support and tourism services to a total of 1 215 events for the year, an increase of 102% YOY. Total services and exposure value to the events industry equates to just over R2.4 million.
The campaign focused on inspiring domestic and regional visitors to visit Cape Town by offering themed weekend packages over the low season. The year-1 campaign (May–July 2015) showcased some major highlights, and saw an increase of 20% in packages sold. For the year-2 campaign (which began in June 2016) we partnered with kulula.com, with a lead-in price of R2 750 per person, while still honouring the same inclusions.
There were more than 2 million visitors to the CTT website (www.capetown.travel) in the past year. There was an increase of 16% YOY in unique traffic; our domestic market increased by 17%; and international traffic increased by 17% from the UK and 3% from the US. Bookings made via our affiliate partner Booking.com increased by 135% YOY, and a further 100 bookings were made with Rentalcars.com. The Cape Town mobile app saw a total of 16 000 downloads.
There was significant growth of 73% in audience reach through the hosting of a total of 174 international and domestic media. We enabled journalists and content creators to craft positive, balanced and representative stories about Cape Town. We also produced a series of six #loveCapeTown Neighbourhoods videos, with a collective total of 60 000 views.
There was significant growth across all our social-media platforms, with Facebook growing by 12% to 401 294 likes; @lovecapetown on Twitter by 30% to 102 968 followers; @CapeTownTourism on Twitter by 137% to 5 694 followers; @lovecapetown on Instagram by a massive 220% to 17 000 followers; and YouTube video views by 101% to 189 295 views.
With Thebe Tourism contributing to the Board Development Fund, we were able to choose three winning recipients for 2016: Turning Point B&B, Maboneng Township Arts Experience, and Lungi’s B&B. Each of these small businesses won a cash injection of R50 000, with a combined marketing value of +R200 000 from Cape Town Tourism. The successful launch event resulted in PR coverage worth R500 000.
In August 2015 Cape Town Tourism received an unqualified audit report.
We maintained our current BBB-EE status of level 4 (100% contributor).
Our liquidity and solvency is currently more than adequate, meaning our short-term expenses/debt can be easily covered without external assistance.
Our HR department, in collaboration with MOTTO, an organisational development specialist, launched a cultural analysis survey in March 2016. 91% of the team completed the online survey, which revealed great insights into the current culture of Cape Town Tourism.
The revitalised membership model and Hello Weekend campaign were shared with the team during a series of interactive and fun team information sessions on 18-20 May.
We drew up an enterprise-wide business continuity plan with the result that some testing schedules will be implemented to ensure continuity for a multitude of possible scenarios.
SARS issued our tax clearance certificate and we maintained our Public Benefit Tax Exemption status for the 11th consecutive year.
To advertise your business offering and product in the Official Visitors’ Guide or for more information around benefits and costs, contact Nicole Rawlins at firstname.lastname@example.orgCLICK TO ENQUIRE
To learn more or be involved in our media-hosting programme, which offers the opportunity to showcase your product through international and domestic media coverage, contact Leani Jansen van Vuuren at email@example.comCLICK TO ENQUIRE
We encourage all our members to join Twitter and follow @CapeTownTourism to remain up to date with the latest industry trends and in-the-know with all things Cape Town and tourism-related.CLICK TO ENQUIRE
Cape Town Tourism is constantly engaging with new trends and adopting measures that we believe will benefit our organisation and our members. We continue to build ever-stronger ties with our partners internationally, continually proving to them that Cape Town is as great a destination as any other big city worldwide.
With our strengths in the digital environment and our drive to be innovative, our global reputation is growing. Our increased capacity at our harbour and airport, as well as significant developments in terms of hotels and conference centres, means that we are truly open for business. We would like to thank all our collaborating members and our passionate staff who have enabled us to adapt and not just survive, but thrive.