Following the announcements made by the French Government on 14 May 2020 further to the Interministerial Committee for Tourism, an extraordinary 2 million euro recovery plan was announced by the Côte d’Azur France Regional Tourism Committee to support the resumption of activities by the tourism professionals on the Côte d’Azur. Since the beginning of March, tourism professionals on the Côte d’Azur have come together to create a recovery plan in conjunction with the Côte d’Azur France RTC and the Alpes-Maritimes department, and to plan a time-flexible communication and advertising campaign for the French market in order to attract French customers who would prefer to remain in France this summer. This has once again resulted in a true public-private partnership, which has been strengthened to prepare a large-scale action plan with an overall budget of 2 Million euro, 25% of which will be provided from private funds.
A TRUE PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP
As of the first signs of the health crisis in France and its consequences on tourism with the cancellation of the first major events, the CÔTE d’AZUR FRANCE Regional Tourism Committee (RTC) – at the instigation of its Chair, the Mayor of Cannes, David Lisnard, in partnership and permanent collaboration with the Alpes-Maritimes department – consulted and brought together the entire tourism chain on the Côte d’Azur – regional collectivities, tourist information centres, hoteliers, restauranteurs and caterers, beach managers, business tourism professionals, events organizers, carriers, etc. – The result was a tourism recovery plan intended to help save this essential sector of the Côte d’Azur economy, and thus jobs and activities. This plan fits into the complementary nature of the recovery actions implemented at a regional level by the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur RTC
AN EXCEPTIONAL BUDGET FOR AN EXCEPTIONAL SITUATION
The 2-million-euro budget will be mainly dedicated to deploying actions on the national market, centring on three challenges: reputation, reassurance about the destination and transforming this into overnight stays. A two-step scenario has been constructed.
Part 1 is devoted exclusively to the French market, targeting leisure customers as a priority, and then Business Tourism in the autumn.
Part 2 will implement digital advertising campaigns on local European markets, in particular Germany, Switzerland and Scandinavia, and even Italy and the United Kingdom, followed by more-distant countries, depending on developments regarding the reopening of the flight markets.
REPLAY OF THE TOURISM RECOVERY PLAN WEBINAR
ON THE FRENCH MARKET, THE PROMOTIONAL MECHANISM DEDICATED TO LEISURE TOURISM WILL BE AS FOLLOWS:
• BOOSTING THE REPUTATION AND VISIBILITY OF CÔTE D’AZUR FRANCE AS A DESTINATION:
Communication actions over three main French catchment areas providing customers for the Côte d’Azur: the Greater South (Aix-Marseilles-Montpellier), Paris and Lyon. On the programme: television and mass poster campaign in town centres, underground stations, tram and bus networks, railway stations and in shopping centres. Consequently, between mid-June and 1 July, 10% of the French population will be potentially targeted by this Côte d’Azur campaign, the visuals and themes for which will soon be revealed around the CÔTE d’AZUR FRANCE regional brand.
• REASSURANCE ABOUT THE DESTINATION:
Receptions for journalists and influencers to be held wo that they can showcase the destination’s assets and its continued and renewed interest as a tourist destination based on experience, while providing information on the implementation of health protocols by professionals on the Côte d’Azur. Actions will be taken on social media in order to interact with the 680,000 Fans of Côte d’Azur France Tourism (all social media networks included) and to win over new ones.
• TRANSFORMATION & CONVERSION:
All the tools and circuits have been activated in order to firm up purchases.
On the one hand, the major air and rail carriers, comparison platforms and OTAs have expressed a desire to assist the Côte d’Azur in its strategy to win over French customers.
On the other hand, at the request of private tourism stakeholders, preference will also be given to short circuits, with marketing activations favouring direct bookings.
Within this framework, a resonance campaign will form the link with the off-line campaign.
Lastly, a marketplace and the Côte d’Azur France Pass will make it easier to pay for cultural or leisure activities.
With regard to business tourism, an essential sector for the Côte d’Azur France destination, this is at a standstill and is completely devastated. Part of its activity has been postponed to the autumn, thanks in particular to the flexibility and reactivity of the conventions bureaux and the conference centres on the Côte d’Azur, as well as to the chain of professionals dedicated to this segment. MICE represents 20% of the CÔTE d’AZUR FRANCE turnover due to an average spend that is sometimes three times greater than the individual customer’s and supports the destination’s drawing power in the low-season in particular.
A major effort will be made in the autumn on the French market, to assist this segment that supports many professionals in the spring and autumn and re-establish this with a good dynamic over the coming months and years.
“Our main objective is to offset an unprecedented social and economic catastrophe, and to assist in the offer’s recovery by restarting demand. Our destination is once again demonstrating its ability to bring us together quickly and to unite us in order to jointly construct an advertising strategy dedicated to supporting the professionals who generate wealth at a rate of over 15% of our region’s GDP and create jobs that cannot be transferred elsewhere, estimated as being 75,000 direct positions and just as many indirect ones. Consequently, 80% of the actions have been altered or added to the initial CÔTE d’AZUR FRANCE RTC 2020 commercial action plan and this thanks to the involvement of the RTC’s main financial backer, the Alpes-Maritimes department, the Region, the CCI, the major towns (Antibes, Cannes, Grasse, Mandelieu, Menton and the Nice Côte d’Azur metropolis), Nice Côte d’Azur airport, Provence Côte d’Azur Events, Mercantour National Park, Var Tourisme, the Monaco tourist information and conference centre, as well as private contributions. This plan benefits from an overall budget of 2 million euro. At a French level, we are also requesting a true Marshall Plan for Tourism and, in an exceptional situation, for an exceptional involvement from Atout France in our advertising campaigns on the domestic market”.
David Lisnard, Chair of the CÔTE d’AZUR FRANCE RTC.
“The Alpes-Maritimes Departmental Council wanted to implement this ambitious recovery plan for tourism on the Côte d’Azur and actively supports it. As a result, an additional budget of EUR 300,000 has been voted on to contribute to it. In parallel, aware of the economic emergency and the dramatic consequences of the lockdown on tourism professionals, I have decided to implement an exceptional 10 million euro departmental health plan that will allow, in particular, for supporting campsites, restauranteurs and hoteliers in restarting the businesses that are so important to the department’s economy. It is organized around a health aid package in order to adapt businesses to the trade protocols introduced by the Ministry of Labour, with a ceiling of EUR 3,500 and a second health aid package relating to protection and hygiene equipment for professional use, with a ceiling of EUR 1,000”.
Charles Ange Ginésy, Chair of the Alpes-Maritimes Department.