Malta was rarely chosen as a place to study English by Russian students. Due to weak communication channels Malta was not very popular among Russian tourists in general. Although tourist traffic from Russia to Europe has been on the increase during last 20 years, the unique Maltese culture and centuries-old buildings were still undiscovered by Russians. Furthermore, according to travel market research, Russian tourists spend much more money than others abroad (eg twice as much as the British!) The agency’s task was to support Malta Tourism Authority in creating strong brand loyalty in Russia, promoting Malta as European Capital of Culture, suitable for a wide range of different tourist categories. We were also asked to establish a permanent communication channel to be used for promoting events of interest to Russian tourists.
Avangard GC recommended using social media to represent Malta to target groups as a better alternative to Great Britain, to create a direct communication channel with potential students and to promote and publicize relevant information about Malta’s educational, cultural and tourist attractions on Facebook, LiveJournal, Twitter, and vk.com.
Avangard GC cooperated with best online platforms for Russian tourists on a regular basis. Now Malta is represented in all popular social media, with daily traffic from 500 to 2,000 people a day. Thirty five per centof all the content is about education, and potential students get an on-line consultation about how to choose the right school to meet their needs. According to the Malta’s Tourism Authority’s statistics, in 2012 the number of Russian tourists visiting Malta increased by 31%.