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By Helen• 18 Feb 2015
The Wondrous Wellington Advent Calendar is back for 2016.
Two-for-one shared plates, free chicken wings, retail discounts and gifts with purchase. These were just some of the festive treats hidden behind beautifully illustrated wee doors in the Wondrous Wellington Advent Calendar.
The 2014 calendar was full of goodness for Wellingtonians, Wellington businesses who got involved and Positively Wellington Tourism’s key performance indicators (KPIs).
A key objective of the campaign is to connect people with downtown Wellington’s retailers, hospitality businesses and attractions in a fun and festive way as we build up to Christmas. Wellington businesses really get into the spirit and many have reaped the rewards.
We’re pretty pleased with the results to-date. Throughout December the calendar received 239,103 unique views and had 91,245 vouchers emailed to consumers - that's 3,802 vouchers per day and a 50% increase on 2013's result. More than a third of those visits were from outside Wellington, showing the calendar is not just popular with locals. Because of the calendar's success, WellingtonNZ.com's December visits increased 21% YOY – a record breaking 389,887 compared to the previous monthly record of 322,172 set in Dec 2013.
Feedback from partner business has been very positive. RUBY, a clothing retailer in Old Bank Arcade says “we’re really happy with the results and would love to participate next year. We had a total of 36 vouchers redeemed, with a minimum spend of $250, which we were really pleased with”. That equates to $9,000 of revenue generated through the calendar.
The Little Waffle Shop reported “2339 redemptions, so times that by 2 and you have the total amount of waffles sold (*that's 4,678 waffles!). This accounted for approximately 25% of our total sales over the period!”
This year we enlisted the help of local illustrator, Victoria Nunns. Victoria created a picturesque Wellington scene reflecting a number of the city’s most recognised and loved landmarks.
The illustration was bought to life with animations such as a gliding Cable Car, exploding fireworks, twinkling lights, three flowing fountains and many others - including my personal favourite, a child sliding down the Frank Kitts slide. We worried we may have gone slightly overboard with our love of animations, but they really did bring the magical cityscape to life.
Our friends over at our Absolutely Positively Wellington Facebook page also helped us by putting forward what they’d like to see included in the illustration. Bernie the Bernese Mountain dog from Bernie’s on the Bay was an overwhelming favourite who made an appearance. Hi Bernie.
Is an advent calendar really an advent calendar without chocolate?
We teamed up with the Wellington Chocolate Factory to bring Wellington a special edition block, featuring the calendar illustration. This proved a great success as chocolate giveaways, hotly contested on social media, enabled both PWT and partners to more frequently mention the advent calendar on social media channels.
As a result, we not only extended the reach of the Wellington Advent Calendar campaign, the posts also got very high engagement rates helping to increase the all important EdgeRank ratings of partners' Facebook channels.
The net increase in migration to Wellington is good news, and a vote of confidence in the region's economy.