Sturgeon backs Scotland’s £6m global campaign

The Scottish government, VisitScotland, Scottish Development International and Universities Scotland have joined forces for the first time to promote Scotland under a single brand.

Launching simultaneously in North America, London and China, ‘Scotland is Now’ is designed to put the country in the international spotlight and showcase Scottish assets to a global audience.

The tourist board and its partners are combining all or part of their existing international marketing spend to deliver the £6 million budget for the ‘Scotland is Now’ campaign.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon (pictured), who unveiled the campaign in Beijing, said: “The message at the heart of ‘Scotland is Now’ is of a bold and positive country offering the warmest of welcomes, rich in history and heritage and with a progressive, pioneering and inclusive approach to our future.”

Total annual expenditure by Chinese visitors to Scotland has increased by 414% over the past decade, from £7 million in 2007 to £36 million in 2017.

Over the same period, the number of visitors from China has increased by 192%, with 41,000 visits in 2016.

Economy secretary Keith Brown offered audiences in New York a sneak peek during Scotland Week last week, and campaign will be showcased at an event in London on April 13, hosted by culture, tourism and external affairs secretary Fiona Hyslop.

Marc Crothall, Scottish Tourism Alliance chief executive, said: “The launch of ‘Scotland Is Now’ marks the beginning of a hugely exciting time for Scotland’s tourism industry and indeed all sectors across Scotland.

“Tourism has been acknowledged as being one of Scotland’s most important industries; it touches every business and sector and fuels all parts of our economy.

“I would encourage all tourism businesses to get on board, raise your business profile within the visitor market and help to make Scotland the number one global destination to visit.”

Stuart Garrett, NorthLink Ferries managing director, added: “Orkney and Shetland are widely recognised as being among the best places to live and work in Scotland.

“From award-winning agriculture and seafood produce, to internationally acclaimed whisky, gin, ale and cheeses, these islands epitomise quality and a welcome second to none.”

The campaign includes online, cinema and press advertising and the development of

Pictured on home page: Forth Road Bridge. Pictured on newsletter: West Highland Way.
Credit for both: VisitScotland/Kenny Lam.