About the Oban & Lorn Tourism Association
Oban and Lorn Tourism Association, (OLTA) was formed as a pressure group in the early 90s as a direct result of the loss of Oban, Mull and District Tourist Board. Initially, self financed by membership subscription, the Association set out ‘to put Oban Back on the Map’. OLTA worked with West Highland and Islands Tourist Board until a further change to the Scottish Tourist Boards led to the creation of 14 new areas. In 1996, OLTA gained funding from the new Area Tourist Board - Argyll, the Isles, Stirling, Loch Lomond and Trossachs - and became one of the Area’s local marketing groups. Membership became automatic for any member of VisitScotland and included over 450 businesses. Subscription was dropped.
VisitScotland continued to undergo changes and since the abolition of the Area Tourist Board membership OLTA is now back as a ‘stand alone’ venture with members subscriptions, web advertising and sponsorship providing funding for a variety of marketing initiatives.
- One of the first tourism marketing groups to utilise the world wide web with www.oban.org.uk launched in January 1996.
- Production and distribution of over a million dedicated leaflets promoting Oban and Lorn (supported by sponsors Bowmans and McTavishs Kitchens).
- Production of a comprehensive guide book for the area (with a budget of £20k), supported by the local council, area tourist board and advertising.
- Newspaper competitions with leading regional papers, advertorials and feature articles supporting both the new website and guidebook.
- Sponsored map for visitors.
- The redesign of our website to incorporate a webcam, becoming one of the top 50 in the world and top 5 in the UK. A further webcam has been added to the site thanks to sponsorship from Piazza and Eeusk.
- TV ad & marketing campaigns for Oban and Lorn. Our initial campaign cost £45k and included 85,000 inserts in The Herald - sponsored by EatScotland, Calmac, McTavishs Kitchens and Bowmans – and 20 poster ads on Glasgow underground stations to support the TV advertising. The TV ad also featured on the website. We have advertised regularly on TV and our most recent ad is running on our home page.
- Outdoor advertising in the central belt of Scotland with branded taxis, bus sides and station platform posters.
Recent Marketing Activity:
- Oban Goes Mobile Responsive: The website has been completely redesigned to be 'mobile responsive'. Additional search features and advertising opportunities have been added and new pages and branding introduced.
- Motorway Advertising: OLTA has used outdoor advertising in the past and this year if we can find additional funding we're booking large (lorry side) adverts on key motorways across the central belt.
- Branded Cabs: We have branded cabs operating in Glasgow and Edinburgh city centres and will be booking more for this summer
- Posters: Our advertising features in every gondola at the Nevis Range, FortWilliam and on the back of every loo door at the Green Welly stop at Tyndrum.
- TV Advertising: OLTA ran a successful TV ad on the STV Glasgow channel (Sky 117). The ad can also be viewed on our YouTube Channel and we're filming new footage this summer.
- Instagram: #ig_Oban is our new instagram account. Feel free to tag your photos of Oban and we may feature them on the home page of our website.
- Social Media: OLTA has a popular Twitter account @obantweet and Facebook page facebook.com/obantourism with many thousands of followers - join us and keep Oban trending!
- Growth Fund money has been approved for a series of food and drink themed blogs and vblogs and work is underway to add these to our website
- On Pack: we're currently running an on-pack promotion with Inverawe - you can also enter online via our Competition page
- Scottish Field: we've a series of ads booked with Scottish Field this year and we'll be running a competition with them this summer