ENTHUSE EDITORS & JOURNALISTS TO WRITE ABOUT ZAMBIA
We had recognised that Zambia was not receiving the level of UK media coverage that its wildlife and tourism so richly deserved. Zambia was trailing the likes of Botswana, Malawi and Rwanda. So as a key opportunity to talk to consumers, increasing editorial coverage for Zambia was a key objective.
But it is worth noting that it can often take over 12 months from speaking to a journalist to actually seeing their work in print. First we have to enthuse the writer. They then have to convince their editors that the story is worthy of a commission. Then the journalist has to have an available slot in their timetable to travel before we then try to coordinate the travel (which can be impacted by the seasons and availability of accommodation etc). Then they have to travel and write their article before submitting it for publication. Once approved by the editor, the magazine then has to timetable inclusion and publish the article). As we said, 12 months can be gone in a flash.
Despite this, we targeted 6 trips in the first 12 months, with 5 scheduled. We aimed to cover 12 titles and we will achieve 10 (or 80 if we include the potential 70 regional titles!). But perhaps more importantly, we appear to have whetted the appetite of the media towards Zambia and we look forward to even more coverage in the coming months.
We set a target of generating $600,000 in the first year, ie coverage actually appearing during that period despite the timing challenges as outlined above. Pleasingly, the Zambia Marketing group initiative has delivered $1,600,000 in year one. £1,166,775 since May 2017.
You can view our comprehensive list of coverage, here >>>. Do note that in some cases, we convinced editors to bring forward planned coverage, as well as run additional feats on the back of advertising spend (especially the case with Travel Africa).
Below are some notable examples of key coverage that ZMG can claim as a direct outcome of our PR efforts:
THE DAILY MAIL | SEPTEMBER | £49,259
SELLING TRAVEL MAGAZINE | OCTOBER | £20,755.43
TRAVEL AFRICA | JANUARY | £25,000
TRAVEL AFRICA | AUGUST | £33,134.28
ZMG's PR team have successfully co-ordinated 3 media trips so far with another 5 in the pipeline during 2018. The timing of the launch of ZMG, was mid-way through the media cycle and the main season in Zambia. So whilst we would have liked to generate editorial coverage immediately, we have seen that in some cases we have had to plan more long term.
GREAT OUTDOORS MAGAZINE
James Clark visited South Luangwa in October for articles which will be published in May. James has also been in conversation with the new editor for ProFlight Magazine for their May issue.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TRAVELLER
Emma Gregg visited South Luangwa in October 2017, with the articles scheduled to be published later this year. The National Geographic Traveller article will be a full length feature on South Luangwa as a safari destination.
Editor, Laura Griffith-Jones extended her trip to Zambia to visit the Lower Zambezi in October. This featured in January edition of the magazine.
Sarah Marshall, from the Press Association will be in South Luangwa in May for 50+ regional newspapers
Tamara Hinson will write for the 'Daily Mail' following a visit to Kafue 20th-28th June
HOUSE OF COCO
Caoilfhionn Maguire will do a 10-page article for this increasingly influential lifestyle magazine, visiting Lower Zambezi & Livingstone in October.
From the four freelancers, we will also be expecting them to place additional stories and features in other magazines (after all, thats how they make their money!) And at IMM (below), we inspired many more journalists to visit Zambia.
ZMG's PR team distribute press releases at key moments through the use of email marketing, individual personal emails, media events and via industry distribution channels to our targeted media contacts. They are distributed at a minimum rate of 1 per month to our own database of 510 journalists, freelancers and news desks.
Below are all listed press releases sent out to date:
The launch of ZMG to the UK
With thanks to the BioCarbon and the Lower Zambezi REDD+ Project, Lower Zambezi National Park has become the world's first national park to achieve a carbon neutral status...
We know Prince Harry has a love for Africa but rumour has it that he and his beau Meghan Markle may have got engaged following a recent romantic trip to Victoria Falls, Zambia...
Imagine starting your day with a morning meditation session and a sunrise yoga class held on a beautiful riverfront deck hugging the Zambezi River surrounded by the sound of moving water and singing birds. On The River Club yoga retreat, this is exactly how every morning begins...
Kafue ballooning has it all and the best thing about it is the remoteness; not only are you the only balloon in the air, but the only vehicle you will spot below is the ground crew heading to meet you with a bottle of bubbly as you come in to land...
To many, Kafue National Park's key attraction is its exclusivity combined with excellent game viewing. As you explore, it truly feels like you have the national park and all its hidden wonders, to yourself...
It’s that time of year again; the heavens open and the much awaited rain descends on Zambia, transforming the once dry plains into an oasis of lush green vegetation, and for many, now is the time to visit...
South Luangwa is dubbed the valley of the leopard, so therefore one of the best places to see them. But, naturally elusive and solitary creatures, the right guide definitely increases your chances...
The unique status of "Sustainable Wildlife Park" has been bestowed upon South Luangwa NP by Dr. Taleb Rifai - the Secretary General of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation UNWTO...
Recharge your body and soul at KaingU Safari Lodge's Yoga Retreat. Start your day with sunrise yoga held on KaingU’s dedicated yoga island and finish the day watching the sun set over the Kafue on Mpamba Rock...
Valentines Day release. We know Prince Harry has a love for Africa but was a romantic trip to Victoria Falls, Zambia what sealed the deal for him and Meghan?..
Luxury Meets Reality: An insight into the efforts camps go to keep your African dream alive...
Livingstone is known as the base for global travellers wanting to explore one of the 7 natural wonders of the world, Victoria Falls. Livingstone has numerous accommodation options, but for those still wanting to get their ‘safari’ fix close to the falls, Islands of Siankaba, Toka Leya Camp and Waterberry Zambezi Lodge all offer their own twist...
Family Safaris in Zambia (May 2018)
The Busanga Plains - 10 years of wildlife (June 2018)
ZMG'S PR team have attended and hosted important media events on behalf of Zambia, enabling them to meet and network with key journalists and influencers in a professional environment.
LONDON WALKING SAFARI (A KAMAGEO EVENT)
ZMG'S PR team took 6 UK journalists on London's version of a legendary walking safari back in August 2017. With a series of press trips to Zambia beginning in October on behalf of Zambia Marketing Group, Kamageo was keen to whet the appetite of leading journalists for a visit to the most authentic of safari destinations.
Attendees: Sue Watt, Emma Gregg, Jo Austin, Ben West, Sarah Marshall and Lynn Hughes.
- At 1500hrs the journalists met their guide (Kamageo’s Tim Henshall) at St John’s Wood and headed straight to find Zebra as their guide was aware of a famous one nearby...
- Next it was off in search for a pride of lions, where the journalists’ guide explained why Zambia is famous for walking safaris.
- After crossing London’s answer to the Zambezi (The Thames) whilst finding out more on canoeing safaris, the walking group came across a particularly relaxed Giraffe and it was here they stopped off for a sumptuous bush dinner including Pumba Ribs, Bush Burger, Kafue Curry and (Passion) Fruit Bat Cheesecake.
- Of course, Zambia is prolific for leopards and a safari in Zambia would not be complete without a sighting but luckily their guide Tim knew just where to find them - The Leopard Bar.
- Due to the inclement weather, the journalists also experienced the spray from Victoria Falls (well, Victoria Embankment) and knew how the Emerald Season feels as the sun broke through. With all participants committing to visiting Zambia within the next few months to produce all-important editorial, the day was deemed a great success.
WTM LONDON (PR)
Back in November 2017, the PR team attended WTM London where they secured themselves 9 meetings with key journalists. Below is a review of each appointment:
Emma Gregg – National Geographic Traveller & Travel Africa
Media Trip feedback - Loved Three Rivers and the private tree house deck. Also loved Thornicroft
Amanda Statham – Cosmopolitan, Weddings Magazine and Family Traveller
Potential wedding/honeymoon led piece for South Luangwa
Sarah Freeman – Freelance & Emirates inflight
Interested in the conservation angle CSL, spend a few days with them and anti-poaching unit in Kafue
Sarah Marshall – Press Association
Hides in South Luangwa, carbon neutral and how tourists can get involved. Confirmed interest for a press trip in May on a general safari piece
Keith Drew – Rough Guides online
Very interested in the undiscovered Kafue National Park, anti-poaching lead piece.
Mark Stratton – Guardian
Very interested in a Kafue trip in May next year and we have followed up with further information for him to pitch out to newspapers and magazines
Sheena Harvey – BBC Wildlife
Interested in a species driven article on Aardvarks at Konkamoya Lodge
Interested in Kafue and the Nanzila Plains
IMM (INTERNATIONAL MEDIA MARKETPLACE)
In March 2018, the PR team attended IMM in London, the industry’s leading platform for travel and tourism brands to meet with the media. It’s a common place for journalists to plan their entire year’s editorial trips and in a single-day networking and relationship building our team gained appointments with 26 journalists. They were able to ‘plant the seed’ in journalists minds regarding Zambia and as a result were able to add to their existing database of journalists keen to write about the destination in
. We confidently predict a further 5-6 journalist trips as a result.
Below is a review of some key appointments:
Teresa Cole – Freelance, FT, Telegraph, Daily Mail, Conde Nast Traveller
Interested in uber luxury and wants to know more about Wilderness' lodges in Zambia.
Nicola Brady – Freelance, Guardian and Independent (Irish + UK)
Wants to know more about bush camps in Zambia for a possible feature/trip
Miranda McMinn – Deputy Editor, Woman & Home
Would like to arrange a family trip for the editor, Kath Brown, with a focus on safaris and wildlife. Staying at lodges that really cater for children and exploring more adventurous family holidays.
Jon Hawkins – Editor, Escapism & Foodism
Focus on unique accommodation and round-up content – would look to send over snippets of information. Sent over more information on Lower Zambezi’s Carbon Neutral status.
Paul Bloomfield – Freelance, Telegraph, Wanderlust, BBC Wildlife
13 years ago he stayed at Chiawa and Sauasage tree so would like to pursue another trip for a “then and now” based article.
Karen Beddow – Blogger
Karen has a really popular family travel blog called Mini Travellers. Her husband was brought up in Zambia but left when he was 8, so she’s really keen to head back to South Luangwa with her children next year who will then be 7 & 8. She also writes for Junior Magazine so would write about the piece there.
Stephanie Cavagnaro – Deputy Editor, National Geographic Traveller
Possible trip to Zambia in 2019 for a Zimbabwe and Zambia honeymoon feature.
Lily Niu – Digital Edtior, The Culture Trip
A lot of round ups and quirky lists – send these over with good imagery for easy coverage. Wanted to increase their Africa content as it gets a lot of engagement.
Sarah Baxter – Freelance writes for Wanderlust and The Metro
Would like to do a Kafue trip to focus on an off-the beaten track piece, however Lower Zambezi may has more appeal to the papers and their readership.
CONCLUSION & NEXT ACTIONS
The PR team will be following up on all of these "leads" and will keep you updated. What is apparent, is that we have re-awakened a real appetite for Zambia within the media.