Barbados - Bajan legends cricket campaign
Over the last year we were tasked with raising the profile of Barbados’ legendary cricket players in the UK market. 2019 was themed as the Year of Wellness and Soft Adventure and along with several other strands of activity, we were given the golden opportunity to leverage the Cricket World Cup and reinforce the cricket heritage and supremacy from Barbados as part of our annual campaign.
Our strategy was to position Barbados as the sporting mecca of the Caribbean, highlighting the talented cricket players that Barbados has produced over the years and their impact on the international game. One of the main objectives was to inspire travellers to visit the island for the various test matches the island was hosting in 2019, to inform travellers about the island’s fascinating cricket heritage and the selection of cricket schools on island.
Utilising access to cricket legends and events Siren planned a series of media moments to create a year-long campaign that built engagement with the island of Barbados and its sporting heritage and capitalised on the world’s excitement around the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
The campaign was launched with Sir Michael Read, Chairman of the British Plaque Trust, who had visited Barbados to honour three of the greatest cricketers in the world, Sir Frank Worrell, Sir Clyde Walcott and Sir Everton Weekes. Sir Michael unveiled the first blue plaque at Barbados’ prestigious cricket grounds Kensington Oval, with the presence of the only living player of the trio, Sir Everton Weekes. Barbados was the first Commonwealth destination to have the unveiling of a blue plaque. Siren utilised the historic moment to secure UK media and broadcast coverage at the event.
Using this as a foundation, we launched our Bajan Legends campaign with cricket Legend Sir Garfield Sobers, Barbados’ national hero and one of the best cricket players in the world and Desmond Haynes, one of the greatest opening batsmen in the history of the game. We secured 12 interviews with national and regional radio stations and a range of sporting, travel and lifestyle publications including The Telegraph, The Times, The Cricketer, BBC Radio and Daily Star. Siren also used the opportunity to create video content which was distributed across various social media channels.
The messaging communicated across the media engagement via our Bajan Legends was the promotion of Barbados as a cricket destination, encouraging cricket lovers and sport fans to travel to the island for the test matches and two One Day International (ODI) matches taking place in Barbados and to learn about Barbados’s rich cricket heritage.
We also hosted a media junket in June – in the height of the Cricket World Cup excitement, capitalising on the huge rise in profile the sport would experience during the competition. Featuring players Sir Garfield Sobers and Joel Garner, a highly regarded West Indies Cricketer and the highest ranked ODI bowler we held a media call and hosted 14 interviews between the players across national, sport, travel and lifestyle channels including Reuters, Talksport, Daily Mail, Evening Standard, The Sunday Times and The Telegraph.
The campaign culminated World Travel Market in November 2019, both Sir Garfield Sobers and Desmond Haynes attended the event to partake in several radio and media interviews. Having built the awareness over the past year, this was the ideal platform to encourage visitors to travel to Barbados next year for two ODI events in January 2020 and to promote Barbados’ fantastic cricket schools available on island which expanded the campaign’s reach into the youth and family markets, whilst also voicing their opinions on the major talent that is currently being produced in Barbados.
Barbados saw a significant increase in tourism arrivals from January to September 2019 when the test cricket matches, ODIs and the Cricket World Cup took place there was a total increase of 8.7% of inbound tourists to the island in comparison to January and February 2018.
Media outreach resulted in 35 features and mentions and a total circulation of 200,435,502 and an EAV of over £460,000.