When it comes to attractions and experiences, Mid & East Antrim wants for nothing. Though famous spots like The Gobbins Cliff Path and the imposing Slemish Mountain have ensured that this region is well-known for its dramatic natural beauty, this part of Northern Ireland has plenty to see and do thanks to its towns and villages, with Ballymena, Whitehead, Islandmagee, and Carnlough all offering something just a little bit different. Following the launch of its new website, travellers can celebrate and explore the contrasts that make up this very special place while the DMO can actively work toward its long-term goal of nurturing the local visitor economy.
Seamless Migration, Functionality with Tangible Benefits
As Chris Barnhill, Digital Marketing Officer at Mid & East Antrim Council, explains, the initial set-up process — as a new Simpleview user — has been seamless. “What has been stand-out as a client since migrating over to the Simpleview platform was the complete end-to-end service provided — from initial contact with our account and project managers to agree key milestone dates, to the full training provided to our team on DMS and CMS management and subsequent support service, who seem to respond to and, in many cases, are able to resolve most queries within minutes.”
As well as a complete and comprehensive set-up service, the ability to add additional functionality and features into the Mid & East Antrim site has proven to be of tangible benefit to the DMO. Speaking specifically, Chris says that Mid & East Antrim has found both the Storyboard page template and the SEO package to be especially helpful in furthering the DMO’s aims and goals.
“Our Storyboard template has been a great success and we use this as our main landing page in our online campaigns to promote the Causeway Coastal Route. We’re lucky to have some of the most stunning coastal scenery in Northern Ireland on our doorstep in Mid & East Antrim and the Storyboard template lets us showcase this in a way that catches peoples’ attention and generates more engagement on the site, particularly with its combination of video and still photography and links out to various pages within. We’ve also recently used it to market our unique wedding venues at the region’s historical thatched cottages. Our SEO package, whilst in its early stages, is also giving us clear and useful insights into our traffic sources, and engagement on the site, and provides an instant indication of the success of our paid campaigns.”
Flexibility for the Future
Chris says that, from a content management perspective, the Simpleview design allows for much more flexibility in terms of amendments to site structure — with the CMS in particular being especially designed with adaptability in mind. And speaking of the future, they explain that the team at Mid & East Antrim are, “...also excited about the growth of the online booking service which the site will be able to provide, and — with the further development of links between TXGB and other ticketing agents — we’re hopeful that the industry will see an increase in bookings via our site.”
For Mid & East Antrim, all of these features and functionality fit neatly into the DMO’s future aims and goals. As Chris explains, “We’ve got a list of plans to further develop and expand the site, and we look forward to seeing the user numbers and engagement increase along with this, with the ultimate goal of encouraging people to stay longer and spend more in the borough, stimulating economic growth in the industry.”