Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC / Visit Maldives) is maintaining the destination momentum in our largest market for this year, the Indian market, through a variety of activities and participation in the most prominent fairs and exhibitions.
We have been conducting multiple exciting events, with more in the pipeline, to maintain the interest and momentum that the Maldives has reached with the Indian market, especially over the last few years with other prominent markets such as China still closed due to Covid-19. India was the largest market in 2020 with an arrival figure of 62,960 and a market share of 11.3% and performed similarly in 2021 with over 278,740 travellers and a market share of 22.6%. As of June this year, the Maldives has welcomed 119,967 tourists to the country from India. During this period India ranked as the top source market in the country, contributing 14.8% of the total market share for 2022 so far.
To maintain our destination momentum, MMPRC has conducted several activities targeting this market in addition to participating in prominent fairs such as OTM 2022, SATTE 2022 and TTF 2022. With the feedback and interest displayed by the Indian market before, during and after these events, MMPRC planned and conducted several joint campaigns with business leaders in the travel and tourism trade. This includes an outdoor advertising campaign promoting the destination in 05 different prime locations in the Delhi and Greater Noida area, with a total reach of approximately 7 million due to the great locations selected. The promotion was carried out from 1st May to 3rd June 2022, coinciding with SATTE 2022, and the locations where the Maldives was promoted were at a great intersection en route to SATTE and for general commuters travelling around the city, with a large number of people visiting locally and from different cities, to encourage them to visit the Maldives.
MMPRC is currently conducting joint-marketing campaigns with Thomas Cook, PickYourTrail, and Vistara Inflight magazine, the last of which is conducted from May till October 2022. Vistara is India’s only five-star rated airline, with an exclusive set of consumers and high recall value among travellers. The Vistara inflight magazine is designed for an elite and High Networth Individual (HNI) audience that wants to enhance their lifestyle, enrich their minds and widen their experiences through the lens of travel. The audience is young and includes celebrities and corporates who are keen to engage with content and media on different platforms. Approximately 500,000 passengers travel through Vistara within a month, and this campaign will promote the Maldives as an ideal holiday destination and encourage the elite and HNI to consider our beautiful islands for their next holiday. The articles, advertisements, and advertorials placed in the magazine are expected to reach over 700,000 affluent readers, while the native story placed on the Vistara website is expected to have a minimum of 55,000 page views. Additionally, the Vistara newsletter reaching over 3 Million subscribers will also carry advertisements to visit the Maldives.
A team of media professionals representing various high-prominent Indian media outlets also visited the Maldives on a tourism familiarisation trip, from 13th to 19th June 2022. The team stayed in Kuramathi Maldives, The Residence Maldives and Noku Maldives. Officials from MMPRC visited Kuramathi Maldives to meet with the media team and discussed broadening efforts to further promote Maldivian tourism in the Indian market. We also promoted the Romantic Side of Life to the Indian audience through our partnership with Wedding Affair magazine. Wedding Affair is one of the largest selling International Indian wedding magazines, targeted at the luxury and niche audience and read by almost over 50,000 loyal readers. The Maldives’ cover and 8-page advertorial reached a readership of some 870,000, and the online portion of the campaign reached over 48,500, putting the total reach of the campaign at 1,033,385.
We also targeted potential travellers through the Radio medium, with a campaign with one of the most trusted agencies in India regarding radio campaign advertising, IAM Communications, for 2 weeks in July 2022. The campaign is executed in 8 key source markets: Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Cochin, Trivandrum, Chennai, and Ahmedabad. The campaign comprises 180 spots in each of the 8 cities – 35,000 seconds of airtime during the campaign and 40 seconds of RJ mentions. The expected reach of this campaign is over 1 million.
MMPRC’s strategies for the Indian market were crafted with a focus on ambiently strengthening the Maldives brand in all major cities. The strategy identifies channels to access the luxury market segment, which includes high-end magazines, highly-advertised roadshows in locations that appeal to the luxury market segment, and promotion of affordable holiday options through roadshows in more accessible locations for that specific market segment. There is also a focus on targeted advertising for honeymooners and family holidays, greater B2B contact to generate awareness of guesthouse and affordable resort options, and using social media for brand promotion during holiday periods.
MMPRC conducted several promotional activities for this market in 2021 as well, such as an E-learning campaign with 2HUB, Tri Campaign with Yatra & Go Air, and influencer and celebrity familiarisation trips, in addition to representing the Maldives in prominent fairs and exhibitions. There are many more activities in the pipeline for this market for the remainder of the year, including TV promotions, radio campaigns, familiarisation trips and joint marketing campaigns with airlines, tour operators and travel agents.