The South of Scotland’s Responsible Tourism Strategy aims to increase our visitor economy by £1 billion and support a further 6,000 jobs.  Extending our season is essential if we are to hit these ambitious growth targets. 

 

As a destination, we have a comparatively short visitor season. Extending the season will provide greater economic benefit and enhanced year-round employment. Having capacity throughout the year and across the region provides the opportunity to spread visitors seasonally and geographically. Achieving this is not an easy task and will not happen overnight: not all businesses wish to open year-round. It will require a collective approach taking incremental steps to get there.  

We need to bring new visitors in through the shoulder months and off-season, and ensure there is a quality experience for them in the destination when they do. We will do this by:  

  • Undertaking a baseline seasonality audit and track progress annually 
  • Facilitating local collaboration between businesses to support the development of a year-round offering, in which visitors can be signposted to attractions, restaurants and accommodation which are open, whenever they visit 
  • Identifying potential clusters – these could be locations, themes, activities, events – and work with businesses and communities to develop a seasonal offer, where relevant maximising our natural capital
  • Market the region as a year-round destination, highlighting the key offerings in each season to relevant target segments within a 2-4 hour drive.

 

Through targeted marketing, strategic messaging, and locally-led destination development we are working collaboratively to attract more visitors in the shoulder and winter seasons, where there is capacity for growth.  

 

The overwhelming majority of the SSDA’s marketing budget is focused on promoting the region in the shoulder and winter seasons as, listening to business, we know this is where we can add greatest value.  Through the SSDA, businesses can feed into the design of these marketing campaigns and be an active part of their delivery. 

 

A Year-Round Destination Webinar

Tuesday 14th November 2023

An update on the launch of the seasonality campaign, a preview of our creatives and learn how to attract business out of season.