Streaming live from New Brunswick

Facebook Live is being tapped to spotlight local tourism businesses.

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Tourism New Brunswick is moving into phase two of its “#NBAlways/NBToujours” campaign – transitioning from stating that it’s “Apart for now, not forever” to asking locals “Where will you go first/Où irez-vous en premier?” once things return to normal.

“#NBAlways/NBToujours” features a series of Facebook Live videos of tour operators doing things like mountain biking across sand dunes, giving Acadian cuisine cooking tips, or taking viewers on a beer and wine adventure.

The campaign is supported by a content-driven microsite, which plays host to the “sights and sounds of New Brunswick” such as audio of lapping waves and evening crickets, or video clips of a chocolate museum or botanical garden. There are also Arcadian-inspired Spotify playlists for road trips and motorcycle routes from avid riders.

Katie Kohler, manager of brand and advertising for Tourism New Brunswick, says the brand previously used Facebook Live to promote the landscape and beauty of Hopewell Rocks in the Bay of Fundy. But for the new #NBAlways video series, tour operators are being put front-and-centre in order to connect locals (and even those outside the province) directly with New Brunswick business owners.

“We really brought the industry to the forefront,” Kohler says. “People are at home, wanting ways to occupy themselves, and we thought, ‘Let’s give experts in the province a platform.’”

The tourism board’s marketing strategy is aimed at getting people to adopt an “active staycation” mindset and to get them thinking about traveling again, says Kohler. “This was an incredible pivot inward,” she says, noting that 62% of New Brunswickers plan to vacation within their province, the highest of any in Canada.

So far, the “#NBAlways” campaign has shown positive results, with views and engagement rates high enough to convince the brand to continue running the content marketing into 2021.

The tourism board’s agency partners include National, Rose Wagner Media and Hemmings House.