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Dublin: 13 °C Friday 1 August, 2014

Tourism Ireland wants to increase US visitors by one-fifth by 2015

The Gathering and takeover of ireland.com website central to plans to get US visitors to ‘Jump Into Ireland’.

Glendalough, Co Wicklow, a major tourist attraction.
Glendalough, Co Wicklow, a major tourist attraction.
Image: iLight foto via Shutterstock

A THREE-YEAR marketing campaign to attract US visitors to Ireland aims to see growth in tourists from North America grow by 20 per cent between 2013 and 2015.

The ambition was aired in the Tourism Ireland launch this morning of its 2013 marketing plans. Both North America and mainland Europe are major targets int he campaign. The aim is to grow overseas visitors to the whole island of Ireland by 5 per cent next year. This, hopes Tourism Ireland, will contribute €3.7 billion to economies north and south of the border. It would represent a 6 per cent increase on the revenue generated by tourists here this year.

With the high-profile The Gathering campaign aimed squarely at attracting members of the diaspora as well as general visitors from overseas here in 2013, Tourism Ireland says it plans to have Ireland.com ready to go live by January. The site, bought from the Irish Times by Tourism Ireland, is to be feature in 11 different languages in order to serve 30 different markets across the world. The launch document today said that:

A new domain name for the site, Ireland.com, with its ease of recognition and memorability, will ensure greater ‘stand-out’ for the destination around the world and deliver savings in promotions and search engine optimisation (SEO) activity.

Currently, Tourism Ireland uses discoverireland.com to attract visitors from overseas and discoverireland.ie is used by Fáilte Ireland to encourage domestic tourism.

Other markets Tourism Ireland deems important to increasing visitor figures include Australia, China and India which are “set to experience a record year in 2012″ for visitors coming here. This, said the tourism body, is partly down to increased numbers of air routes and ease of access through visa waiver schemes etc., all of which have been subject to media campaigns by Tourism Ireland in those countries.

Our next-door neighbours are also in the sights of Tourism Ireland. The “GB Path to Growth” strategy hopes to see 200,000 more holiday visitors coming from the UK to the island of Ireland per year by 2016 than visit right now. That would be a growth of 20 per cent.

The strategy to target North American visitors over three years is called ‘Make Ireland Jump Out’. The campaign slogan is “Jump Into Ireland”

See: 23 stunning photos of an ideal Ireland>

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