VisitScotland’s Growth Fund is a platform which supports groups in leveraging additional and focused marketing investment, stimulating collaboration within the industry, closer working with VisitScotland and achieving strategic alignment with the national Tourism 2020 strategy.
As consumers are more inclined to planning and booking their holidays online, this Fund helps businesses to build their digital capability, and showcase Scotland better and to a higher number of potential visitors.
Successful applications must demonstrate the following:
- Strong strategic alignment – to meet the objectives of the Tourism 2020 Strategy.
- An innovative approach – to achieve customer engagement and additional visits.
- Strong digital focus – to match the needs of the modern digital consumer.
- Effective partnerships and collaboration – business working together in the tourism industry.
- Achievable and measurable growth targets – projects must aim to increase the number of visitors to Scotland and the overall visitor spend.
- A sustainable approach – a long-term view.
- Project viability and deliverability – a clear, achievable project that delivers value for money.
Eligibility of applicants
Applications must come from constituted groups of tourism businesses. A collaborative approach must be demonstrated with a strong mix of businesses from different tourism sectors.
The Growth Fund team will support you through the process and provide advice around monitoring and evaluation.
Activities eligible for support through the Growth Fund Grant award include:
- Digital marketing activity that complements VisitScotland’s ‘Discovery’ strategy and harnesses the Spirit of Scotland approach.
- Marketing activity may be focused on generating additional visitors to a specific area or to engage with a specific activity or sector.
- Marketing activity designed to bring visitors from other parts of Scotland, the rest of the UK and International markets.
- Marketing activity such as: Digital activity – including Search, PPC, Social Media and Display; Content Creation – video, images, copy; Paid Media Advertising – including Radio, Press and Outdoor; PR – FAM trips, agency fees; Printed collateral – design fees, distribution and print production; Joint activity with VisitScotland (up to 25% of total budget); Event and exhibition attendance, both consumer and trade; Project management – including consultancy, campaign management and delivery. No more than 15% of total eligible activity costs; Monitoring and evaluation; Marketing campaigns must be twelve months long with a further three months to complete monitoring and evaluation. Campaigns are expected to commence no later than eight weeks after approval.
Size of grants
Growth Fund Grant awards are available from £10,000 to a maximum of £40,000. The fund can support groups with up to 50% of approved total marketing costs. The rest of the 50% can be match funding from private or public sector sources.
The deadline for initial expressions of interest is 22 March 2017.
How to apply
Applicants must speak with a member of the Growth Fund team prior to making a full application, well in advance of the deadlines. Please contact the team at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your application, or complete the Expression of Interest form on their website.