DESTINATION NORTHERN ONTARIO
As Northern Ontario’s tourism businesses are grappling with the global shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Destination Northern Ontario (DNO), announced the creation of a virtual “Campaign of Hope” to show visitors that Northern Ontario is a place worth waiting for.
In cooperation with DNO’s marketing partners Sunset Country, Northeastern Ontario, Algoma Country, and Superior Country, as well as local tourism operators, the #DreamON campaign aims to connect with seasonal visitors using inspiring images, stories, and updates from the places they cherish, while inviting them to share their own memories. Data shows that Canadians are looking for positive stories. In Canada, web searches for “good news” spiked in early April and remain at their highest levels since 2004 when record-keeping began.
As the Regional Marketing Industry, Destination Northern Ontario understands that during this time of uncertainty, positive feel good stories will help us look forward to and focus on getting the tourism industry back on track. This campaign addresses that need by sharing stories that help to connect local businesses, and those that patronize them, with the loyal travelers waiting to visit. It also lets potential visitors know that the hosts in Northern Ontario are ready to welcome them safely once tourism reopens. The campaign begins with an invitation: Join the #DreamON Campaign of Hope.
The campaign has three key elements.
- Destination Northern Ontario invites operators in Northern Ontario to join the campaign and post their own inspiring stories, photos, and videos with the hashtag #DreamON. These will be shared on social media.
- Destination Northern Ontario invites loyal guests, residents, and lovers of all things Northern Ontario to participate, encouraging them to share their stories and photos about their best trips to Northern Ontario. These stories will be shared on social media using the hashtag #DreamON.
- Destination Northern Ontario and its marketing partners Sunset Country, Algoma Country, Northeastern Ontario and Superior Country will be posting a series of in-depth, inspiring stories, first-person accounts, and updates from its partners on its websites, and sharing them via social media using the hashtag #DreamON. Additionally, the campaign will support local businesses with a virtual marketplace resource. For each city or region in Northern Ontario, the virtual marketplace will provide a comprehensive, updated list of open businesses offering in-store service, curbside pickup, or delivery, facilitating an awareness of businesses operating in the region.
As travel restrictions continue to evolve, and as the tourism industry eventually begins its recovery efforts, Destination Northern Ontario and its partners in the #DreamON campaign will continue to deliver positive stories, photos, and videos to keep people inspired, and to keep Northern businesses front-of-mind when travel reopens. Until then, the tourism industry is rallying together and doing what it does best--bringing people together (virtually, of course).