Belfast Telegraph

Massive £1m campaign aims to lure back shoppers

By Claire McNeilly

An extensive multi-media advertising campaign designed to restore confidence in Belfast by encouraging people to come back into the city is due to be rolled out this week.

The initiative, driven by the Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau (BVCB), is part of the Backin' Belfast campaign and it has the support of key industry stakeholders who hope to curb the damage being done to the city centre amid ongoing flag protests.

Retailers, pubs, clubs, restaurants and hotels have watched profits plummet in the wake of violence linked to the council’s decision to restrict the flying of the Union flag to designated days.

It is hoped that this collective approach — which the Belfast Telegraph

understands will represent an investment of up to £1m — will help restore confidence in Northern Ireland’s capital city.

Recently, there have been various rallying calls through social media for people to socialise in the city, and since the ‘backinbelfast’ hashtag first appeared on Twitter last weekend it has already been tweeted 1.2 million times.

Over the coming days, huge banners will be draped over landmark buildings, mobile advertising vans will traverse the city and even the mannequins in leading outlets will don branded t-shirts.

In return for the custom, traders involved in the scheme have pledged a number of deals, prizes and special offers.

BVCB chairman Stephen Magorrian, who is also managing director of Botanic Inns, which has a portfolio of 15 bars in Belfast, said the campaign was about reminding everyone what a great city Belfast is.

Belfast Telegraph

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