Finn Partners takes on Dubai tourism account

The agency is amplifying the city’s positioning as a destination and increasing awareness about its history and attractions.

Dubai's city marina. (Photo credit: Getty Images)
Dubai's city marina. (Photo credit: Getty Images)

DUBAI, UAE: Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing has hired Finn Partners as its North American integrated communications agency.

Finn Partners will manage comms positioning, media and trade relations, promotions, strategic brand alliances, experiential marketing initiatives and special events. The firm will also support Dubai’s influencer marketing and social media campaigns, Finn Partners said in a statement.

Dubai is tasking Finn Partners with raising and solidifying the city’s positioning as a destination and increasing awareness about its history and attractions. The firm was awarded the one-year, $200,000 contract last week, according to an agency spokesperson.

“We are really focusing on our tourism restart and ensuring we go into the new year with a solid plan,” a department spokesperson said, via email. “The immediate goals are to increase awareness that the destination is open and welcoming international visitors, with no quarantine and a laser focus on the health and safety of travelers throughout their journey via a robust media relations and editorial plan, while simultaneously mindful that the country and travel industry are still rebounding.”

In 2019, more than 16.7 million tourists visited Dubai, an increase of more than 5% from the prior year, according to statistics cited by Dubai Tourism.

Dubai had planned to look for a new agency partner earlier this year, but paused the search because of the pandemic. The city’s tourism department invited six agencies to pitch, but it declined to name them or the incumbent on the account.

“Finn Partners really understood what we were looking to do in the market, they were spot on in their approach to meeting our objectives, overcoming our challenges and aligned on the way we work,” the Dubai spokesperson said. “From a competitive advantage perspective, Finn Partners was the clear standout during the RFP process.”

Dubai Tourism and Commerce re-upped a contract with a $2.4 million marketing budget with Edelman in February. Edelman started working on that account in fall 2018.

Dubai’s Department of Culture and Tourism also works with Brunswick, but not to promote tourism, according to Foreign Agents Registration Act documents. Brunswick’s work is focused on culture; the firm did not bid for the work won by Finn Partners, said Brunswick partner Jade Mamarbachi.

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