Birmingham seeks agency help to drive tourism

Birmingham is hunting for an agency to help promote the city and its surrounding areas as a tourist destination.

Tourist attraction: Birmingham's Bullring shopping centre
Tourist attraction: Birmingham's Bullring shopping centre

Marketing Birmingham, the city's public-private sector strategic marketing partnership, has issued a tender for PR assistance that could be worth up to £177,000.

The chosen agency will be charged with promoting the city and nearby areas, including the Black Country and Solihull, as places to visit through the tourism programme, Visit Birmingham.

It will also promote the area to business visitors as part of Meet Birmingham, the city's programme for business tourism.

The area, which received 33.5 million visitors in 2011, is looking to reach both a national and international audience. Birmingham is the most visited city in the UK outside of London by European travellers.

It is understood that Marketing Birmingham's PR strategy will focus on a number of different themes throughout the year.

The year-long brief starts in September 2013 and has the potential to be extended for a further 13 months until December 2015, depending on funding. The deadline for tenders for the work is 1 August.

Marketing Birmingham PR executive Ellie Rance told PRWeek that its PR agency relationships are reviewed on a regular basis.

McCann Erickson is the incumbent agency for Visit Birmingham and Meet Birmingham. Integrated agency Cogent Elliot was appointed to lead its advertising account late last year.

Attractions in Birmingham and the wider region include the Bullring shopping centre, Cadbury World, Wolverhampton Racecourse and Edgbaston cricket ground as well as a number of arts and cultural venues.

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