Wellington City's 'Middle of Middle-earth' campaign breaks web record for monthly visits

Ultimate_Film_Experience_lores.jpgWellington's 'Middle of Middle-earth' campaign, helped drive record traffic to the region's official tourism website in November, with monthly visits to WellingtonNZ.com cracking 300,000 for the first time.
Positively Wellington Tourism chief executive David Perks says year-on-year growth for November was 107%, with the site's monthly visitation hitting an all-time high of 309,824.
Says Perks: "In the two months from the announcement of Wellington as the Middle of Middle-earth to the end of PWT's film campaigns,WellingtonNZ.com received over 520,000 visits.

"What's particularly exciting about those figures is that 64% of them were new visits, meaning we're continuing to engage with and attract new audiences."
PWT - which is a council controlled organisation - ran digital campaigns in both New Zealand and Australia, as well as focused on developing and optimising new content on its site. Film Me WLG invited Australians to audition online for the ultimate film tourism experience in Wellington, while New Zealanders were given a cinema of seats to one of the first screenings of the film at Embassy Theatre. A red carpet live feed of the world premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey was also hosted.
Aucklanders accounted for 34% of visits to WellingtonNZ.com across the Middle of Middle-earth campaign period, while Australians nudged out Canterbury for second place in out-of-town visitor rankings, at 11%.
Says Perks: "Information about Wellington City Council's Hobbit Artisan Market and our new Film Map proved particularly popular, while the Embassy screening give away attracted almost 78,000 views."
Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown was interviewed by outlets from all over the world following the announcement the city would be named Middle of Middle-earth as part of its premiere celebrations.
Says Wade-Brown: "The Hobbit is a great way of telling the Wellington story of talent and technology globally, and brought a lot of attention to Wellington.
"Our CBDFree wireless internet helps visitors access WellingtonNZ.com to find out more of what to do and where to go when they're in the Capital."
WellingtonNZ.com is the most visited regional tourism website in New Zealand, attracting over 1.7 million visits in the last financial year. The site has attracted over 830,000 visits in the financial year to date, an increase of 32% on the same period last year.
Positively Wellington Tourism also cracked 50,000 likes on its Absolutely Positively Wellington Facebook page this month.

(Pictured: Positively Wellington Tourism's prize winners - transformed into Orcs by Weta Workshop - at Scorching Bay as part of a Wellington film tour).

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