Travel PR: Willerby campaign with Dr Hilary Jones

Travel PR

Travel PR campaign: Objectives 

Covid-19 saw a huge impact on travel PR, however the brands who maintain media presence at the start of lockdown were in a better place to maintain brand voice.

As holiday parks throughout the UK prepared to reopen post-lockdown and breathed a sigh of relief to be getting the summer season back on track, market leading holiday home manufacturer Willerby was seeking to capitalise on the trend for staycations and support its network of parks to get back up on their feet.

Our objective was to secure national press coverage to raise Willerby’s profile through travel PR at this pivotal time for UK tourism, positioning the brand as a trusted thought leader and guiding consumers as they began to plan getaways in the wake of the pandemic.

With a heightened consumer presence online, Willerby was also seeking to deepen its digital footprint, so we knew that linkbuilding and digital content would be a key part of our travel PR approach.

Travel PR campaign: Strategy & Execution 

We wanted to align Willerby with a credible expert in the health sector so we could highlight the wellbeing benefits of staycations, and recruited trusted voice of the pandemic, Dr Hilary Jones.

We commissioned research delving into key topics, from the benefits of getting back to nature to the future of travel, combining this with commentary from Dr Hilary to create our Great British Break Off report. This was hosted on a dedicated landing page on Willerby’s website to capture data. 

Through travel PR we created news angles to target the national press, offering interviews with Dr Hilary alongside Willerby’s experts.

This was supported by a series of social media and blog content which both drove traffic to the campaign page and created a sense of community amongst staycationers. We also hosted a Facebook Live event with Dr Hilary, who took the nation’s travel questions. 

Our content was shared by key stakeholders including The National Caravan Council, expanding our reach and engagement even further. 

Travel PR


Poised and ready to go live as soon as it was announced that holiday parks could reopen, the Smoking Gun PR team hit every national press, broadcast and digital opportunity, with results including:

  • 12 national media hits including The Express, Sun, Mirror, Metro and MailOnline including quotes from Willerby’s CEO
  • Consumer lifestyle coverage in the likes of Psychologies, Woman, Fit & Well, Coast, Pick Me Up! and Best
  • 85% of coverage included a backlink to our campaign landing page from high domain authorities 
  • 20+ broadcast interviews including Heart and BBC 
  • Profiling in influential trade publications 
  • Coverage and content communicated key messages about the positive impact of staycations on health
  • Thousands of web visits and hundreds of downloads of our report