New Zealand travel operators are contributing content and travel deals to a revamped Tourism New Zealand website as well as adding links back to their own sites.
The articles will be ranked based on the ‘richness’ of their content, for example use of images and videos and feedback from consumers, to encourage companies to post high quality and relevant articles.
Registration for operators is free and open to companies selling New Zealand to ensure the trade benefits directly from visitors to the site, according to the tourism organisation.
User-generated content can be posted by anyone, including past travellers wishing to share their experiences online, as well as bloggers or New Zealand-based travel experts.
The aim is to deliver “relevant, inspirational information” to potential travellers on newzealand.com as part the organisation’s digital marketing strategy.
Visitors will be encouraged to the site through search engine marketing, other online advertising and social media.
Tourism New Zealand brand and international PR general manager Catherine Bates said: “The redeveloped site reflects the shift in marketing New Zealand internationally from generating awareness about the country through traditional media, to actively targeting the people who are already considering travelling here using online channels.
“The internet had become the prime place that 80% of potential travellers go to research, plan and book travel.
“With many millions of potential travellers actively considering visiting New Zealand at any one time, our revamped website has to be able to actively convert this interest into referrals to our travel partners and ultimately, bookings.
“The site also represents the most cost-effective approach in engaging with such a large number of people in a way that moves them from being ‘active considerers’ to ‘actual travellers’.”
Tourism New Zealand claims the site has been tracking about 60% above a year ago at 1.2 million unique visits, and 150,000 referrals a month.