BBC Worldwide, VisitBritain, British Airways renew successful partnership for BBC Britain

We’re delighted that the partnership between BBC Worldwide, VisitBritain and British Airways has proved so successful in year one and look forward to continuing to build BBC Britain to become a major, leading destination for features content about Britain.Guy Hughes-Wilson, VP Sales Western Europe, BBC Advertising
Date: 06.10.2016     Last updated: 07.10.2016 at 11.05
Category: BBC Worldwide
BBC Worldwide, VisitBritain and British Airways, the UK flag carrier have renewed their partnership for BBC Britain, a dedicated content portal on BBC.com that tells a compelling story of modern Britain to an international audience, with the ambition of driving visitor numbers to the UK, for a further two years.

This follows a successful first year for BBC Britain, which delivered on editorial, reach and commercial objectives:

Editorial

• Under the editorial mission of ‘Exploring an extraordinary island, one story at a time’, BBC Britain published 150 new pieces of content (articles, videos and images), combined with relevant ‘lifestyle’ content drawn from across BBC.com.
• In particular, the BBC Britain audience loved the themes of ‘exploring somewhere secret’, the extraordinary quirks of British cities, towns and villages, and British cultural icons.
• The editorial team offered an array of innovative content formats, such as an infographic that tracked James Bond around the world, an animation of Philip Larkin's greatest poem and flying a drone through tunnels hidden beneath London.

Reach

In year one, BBC Britain achieved:

• 20 million page views
• 10 million users
• Nearly 300,000 followers on Facebook
• 23,000 Instagram followers

Commercial

A Sponsorship Effectiveness Study by BDRC Continental found:

• Very high positivity towards both the BBC Britain content (94% found it interesting, 94% found it good quality) and the sponsorship creative (rated 8.2 on a likability scale of 1-10).
• Almost unanimous (94%) approval of the fit between the BBC, VisitBritain and British Airways.
• The campaign significantly shifted top-of-mind awareness of British Airways and reinforced positivity towards the brand (e.g. +17% uplift for ‘strong’ agreement that British Airways is an airline people are proud to fly with).
• For VisitBritain, there were strong significant upward shifts on people’s intent to visit within a year, 73% said it changed their perception about Britain.

The partners were brought together by BBC Advertising, which sells advertising and sponsorship solutions on behalf of BBC Worldwide's commercial portfolio across broadcast online and mobile platforms globally. BBC Worldwide maintains full editorial control while VisitBritain and British Airways have the surrounding advertising inventory. The renewed deal for the BBC Britain portal, which is available outside of the UK, commenced on 1st October 2016. Following the renewal, in October audiences can look forward to content including ‘The strange origins of Britain’s stone circles’, ‘How to make whisky in 21 steps’ (video) and ‘The bizarre tale of London’s necropolis railway’.

Guy Hughes-Wilson, VP Sales Western Europe, BBC Advertising, said: “We’re delighted that the partnership between BBC Worldwide, VisitBritain and British Airways has proved so successful in year one and look forward to continuing to build BBC Britain to become a major, leading destination for features content about Britain.”

VisitBritain Chief Executive Sally Balcombe said: “We are pleased to be continuing our partnership with BBC Worldwide to showcase to an international audience of millions the countryside, culture and history that can only be experienced in Britain, inspiring more visitors to travel across our nations and regions and spreading the economic benefits from tourism across the whole country.”

Sara Dunham, British Airways’ Head of Marketing, Retail & Direct, said: “We are delighted to have renewed our partnership with Visit Britain and BBC Worldwide. Together we are committed to delivering a unique perspective on Great Britain and encourage more eager Britophiles to visit our shores on British Airways”.

-Ends-

For further information:

BBC Worldwide - Lucy Philippson: lucy.philippson@bbc.com / 020 8433 2687 or Cassandra.Power@bbc.com / 07739300280

Notes to Editors

• The original partnership announcement press release can be found here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/worldwide/2015/british-airways-visit-britain

• A video case study is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-RgAMvXeVw

• The Sponsorship Effectiveness Study by BDRC Continental conducted 1,801 interviews across 5 markets (USA, Germany, France, Brazil, India), using a Test and Control approach.

About BBC Worldwide
BBC Worldwide is the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). Its vision is to build the BBC’s brands, audiences, commercial returns and reputation across the world. This is achieved through investing in, commercialising and showcasing content from the BBC around the world, in a way that is consistent with BBC standards and values. The business also champions British creativity globally.

In 2015/16, BBC Worldwide generated headline profits of £133.8m and headline sales of £1,029.4m and returned £222.2m to the BBC. For more detailed performance information please see our Annual Review webpage: www.bbcworldwide.com/annual-review