2014 was a busy year for Travel Manitoba with the official launch of our new brand: Manitoba. Canada's Heart...Beats. To date the brand is performing very well and we are eager to show it off again with our 2015 marketing campaign and partnership opportunities.

"I'm very proud of our accomplishments this past year," commented Colin Ferguson, President and CEO of Travel Manitoba.  "Manitoba, Canada's Heart...Beats is resonating with our target customers."

Prior to the launch, Probe Research was commissioned to measure awareness of Manitoba as a travel destination and general travel intentions of people in our primary Canadian markets. Recently, a second wave of the survey was completed which focused only on areas where we advertised, and the findings are impressive.   

"Our brand awareness campaign is working. We are delighted with these initial numbers and are looking forward to even better results as we move forward together to deliver our 2015 marketing plan," said Ferguson.

Here are some of the highlights from the report:  

- We raised the awareness of Manitoba tourism from our initial benchmark study in January by 6% in Winnipeg, 17% in the rest of Manitoba and by 20% in Calgary.

- Our campaign videos improved our target market's opinion of Manitoba as a potential travel destination by 11%.

- Almost 60% of air travellers remarked that their opinion of Manitoba as a travel destination improved after seeing our campaign video.

- 34% of respondents from our target market were influenced enough after seeing our video to seek out more information about Manitoba travel/vacation opportunities - a rise of 7% from the January benchmark. 38% of air travellers felt the same influence.

- 76% of air travellers indicated the campaign had a positive influence on their decision to spend their vacation in Manitoba.

In our 2015 partnership program, Travel Manitoba will continue to focus investments on increasing brand awareness in high yield markets.  Some of our key investments will include television advertising on highly rated programs, as well as during special events including the 2015 Grey Cup, FIFA Women's World Cup and Jets hockey games.

Advertising partnerships will continue with the addition of some exciting new opportunities. For example, Travel Manitoba has partnered with Canadian Geographic magazine on a project that will see the entire May 2015 travel edition dedicated entirely to Manitoba and its iconic travel experiences. A perfect fit with Manitoba's target traveller types of Authentic Experiencers and Cultural Explorers, the issue will be distributed to the entire Canadian Geographic subscriber base, along with increased newsstand distribution in selected markets and in Air Canada Maple Leaf lounges.

Due to its popularity in 2014, the twelve-page inserts in Air Canada's enroute magazine will be expanded to two in 2015, (summer and winter) in addition to the monthly single page ads. The Winnipeg Free Press travel pages will continue to run year-round. In addition to these and other print opportunities, a full range of digital marketing and social media, travel trade, media relations and fishing and hunting opportunities are available. Contact the partnership team today to discuss your business needs and to develop a plan that will encourage travellers to come visit you.

The complete 2015 Marketing Plan and Partnership Opportunities can be downloaded here.