Cape Town Tourism works with travel bloggers to unlock Cape Town

Travel bloggers have become the new citizen journalists, unlocking destinations and extending the dream of travel as more people are depending on and favouring online information and word-of-mouth recommendations for travel tips and ideas.

Cape Town Tourism has engaged four top international travel bloggers to share their experience of Cape Town as they uncover the destination and detail their adventures to the world in a week of diverse experiences in and around the city.

The venture forms part of Cape Town Tourism’s campaign to promote the destination across a number of focused, influential digital platforms. Termed iAmbassador, the campaign is a collaboration between Cape Town Tourism and a core group of influential travel bloggers who specialise in a variety of niches. The bloggers reach millions of readers each month through their own online channels and are also sought-after travel writers and influencers for Lonely Planet, CNN, National Geographic Intelligent Travel and Travel+Leisure Magazine.

The bloggers will use the twitter hashtag #LoveCapeTown for the duration of their stay in Cape Town and will share content across various social media platforms. Their trip to Cape Town is between July 28 and August 5, and their itineraries include some of the must-see tourist highlights, such as hiking Table Mountain and paragliding off Signal Hill, as well as discovering the city’s hidden gems such as cycling through Khayelitsha with local community members. They will also be guest speakers at the Getaway Travel Blog Conference on August 4, 2012.

About the bloggers:

Keith Jenkins left a career in banking to become a fulltime traveller. He shares his experiences with upward of 15 000 twitter followers @velvetescape and blogs about his journeys at velvetescape.com.

Melvin Böcher has more than 85 000 twitter followers @traveldudes and is the founder of traveldudes.org a website that exchanges travel tips and insider information.

Nellie Huang is a culture and adventure traveller who takes over 21 000 twitter followers @WildJunket along on her global wanderings. She also co-produces an online magazine wildjunket.com.

Adventure traveller Matt Long shares his adrenaline moments with more than 15 000 twitter followers @landlopers and has a blog of the same name Landlopers.com. He is a respected Lonely Planet blogger and is noted on several platforms as a top blogger.

iAmbassador co-ordinator Keith Jenkins says, “Innovative thinking by destination marketing organisations has led to co-operation with travel bloggers who are at the forefront of sharing content in real time across multiple social media channels. Blog trips differ from press trips in that the marketing is done instantaneously, thereby utilising the blogger’s online reach to spread the word about the destination and respond to readers' queries. Real-time content sharing is a powerful destination marketing tool and reinforces the way in which information is consumed in today’s digital age.

"Consumers are looking for relevant information at the click of a button. This is where bloggers play a vital role, sharing their experiences via social media in real-time and providing destinations with easily-searchable online content. We are looking forward to visiting Cape Town and sharing the many layers of iconic and unexpected stories of this fascinating city.”

Says Cape Town Tourism CEO, Mariëtte du Toit-Helmbold, “Seeing Cape Town through the eyes of these digital travellers is going to be an armchair journey to follow. Just as you are reminded of the beauty and depth of our city when you play tour guide to friends and family, you will be enthralled by the musings and insights of these talented social media interpreters. The power of authentic, independent voices cannot be underestimated and we know that our iAmbassadors will be absorbed by the fascinating stories, beauty, diversity, anthology and promise of Cape Town.”

Cape Town Tourism will host a twitter chat with the bloggers on Sunday, July 29, 2012, between 19h00 and 20h00 (SAST) where Capetonians will welcome the bloggers to Cape Town and share recommendations for exploring the city. Follow the #LoveCapeTown twitter hashtag to join the conversation.

For further information, please contact Cape Town Tourism’s PR and Communication Manager Skye Grove on +27 21 487 6800, email skye@capetown.travel or visit www.capetown.travel.

Released for Cape Town Tourism by Rabbit in a Hat Communications, Tammy White, +27 21 448 9705, +27 73 202 5041, tammy@rabbitinahat.co.za.

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