Business Plan 2022
Go New Forest (GNF) is a “not for profit” Community Interest Company providing a destination-wide partnership to manage and develop tourism and the visitor economy throughout the New Forest National Park and wider district. Established in April 2017 with the support of New Forest District Council, New Forest National Park Authority and Forestry England, GNF’s staff and Board are drawn from the previous destination partnership of New Forest Tourism Association and New Forest District Council’s tourism service which it replaces.
Whilst its 2022 Business Plan and Destination Marketing Plan are focussed on destination recovery from the pandemic, GNF’s overall approach is still founded on the VERB model (see below) of destination management which puts “forest first” tourism at the heart of all activities. GNF and its members will therefore continue to champion the common purpose of maintaining the special qualities of the destination and mutuality between the needs and demands of Visitors, Environment, Residents and Businesses.
The CIC’s 200 plus tourism & hospitality members and it’s 350 Go New Forest Card scheme businesses, along with its partner organisations, form a comprehensive network of relationships. This network is ideally positioned to nurture recovery and assist local businesses to make the most of their own development, operation and promotion whilst collectively delivering the best possible quality and value of the experience for all visitors. It is a unique relationship structure that if effectively supported by everybody, will significantly aid prosperity and help to improve the quality of all local life.
To develop and promote the New Forest as a high-quality destination whilst seeking to protect and enhance its special qualities and grow business by inspiring people worldwide to visit responsibly all year round. In doing so, GNF will work closely with all interests to promote the natural, cultural and commercial attributes of the New Forest for the benefit of GNF member businesses and in doing so; the wider New Forest economy and community.
Go New Forest Model
The GNF model is based on the precept that all Visitor, Environment, Resident and Business (VERB) interests are fundamentally inter-related and mutually inclusive. This principle beats at the heart of all GNF’s work and this model is the formula used to build an all-embracing network of interests throughout the New Forest. The purpose of this network is to promote common sense as common practice and develop common relationships to deliver common benefits using the visitor economy as an engine for positive outcomes.
GNF will utilise this network to assist the comprehensive delivery of high-quality resident, day and staying visitor experiences which support and enhance the local human, cultural, economic and natural resources of the New Forest area both now and in the future.
Environmental, Social & Economic Benefits of Visitor Happiness
Visitors who are well-informed before they visit, welcomed when they arrive and well cared for during and after their day visit or stay, tend to be happier visitors.
Happier well-informed visitors are liable to understand more, spend more, behave well and enjoy a better overall experience during their stay.
A better overall experience during their stay means visitors are more likely to respect and connect with the local cultural heritage, environment, residents and businesses, thereby getting more from the destination they are visiting. Visitors who get more from the destination they are visiting are consequently more likely to invest in it, both emotionally and financially.
The emotional and financial needs of the local cultural heritage, environment, residents and businesses are therefore more likely to be met by happy visitors. Happy visitors are also more likely to become loyal well-behaved returners, be much less demanding on the public purse, and will energetically and enthusiastically promote the great experience they’ve just enjoyed in the New Forest to their family, friends and social media followers.
Visitors: Deliver the “Care for the Forest, Care for Each Other” visitor stewardship programme in partnership with NFDC, NFNPA, Forestry England & the Verderers and embed it in all management and promotional activities during 2022
Environment: Launch the New Forest Green Leaf Tourism Scheme by February 2022 and embed the “Turning over a Green Leaf” campaign in all relevant Destination Marketing activities throughout the rest of the year.
Residents: Establish tourism & visitor economy partnerships with the destination’s eleven main settlements by the end of 2022 to assist the integration of their own location’s promotion in the wider Destination Marketing Plan.
Business: Develop a comprehensive free basic listing service for all local businesses on www.thenewforest.co.uk and engage all GNF members businesses in maximising the individual and collective benefits of participating in and delivering the Destination Marketing Plan.
- A not for profit Community Interest Company intent on continuous improvement in all aspects of the visitor economy
- A connected network of businesses that works mutually to create a prosperous and locally resilient visitor economy
- Support and develop The New Forest’s premium destination status by helping businesses work together to deliver the environmental, social and economic benefits of visitor happiness
- Resist national & global interests seeking to externalise revenues and reduce the local employment and economic benefits of the tourism and visitor economy at the expense of local owned businesses and the wider New Forest economy.
- Provide the mechanisms to support individual and collective business action & community engagement to improve the value and positive impact of the local tourism and visitor economy
- Operate a constantly improving range of website, public relations, print & digital media channels to deliver New Forest messages direct to a targeted audience of over 2 million people locally, nationally and worldwide
- Promote “Forest First” tourism by embedding the principles of VERB and Visitor Happiness in all business development, marketing and public relations activities
- Support locally owned businesses by delivering and maintaining the GNF Card Scheme
- Strategically lead, promote & lobby on behalf of the New Forest tourism and visitor economy
Key Membership Benefits
- Maintain a competitive, collaborative & mutually supportive New Forest business relationship network
- Deliver individual & collective business advantages by providing a wide range of opportunities for members to work together, extend commercial reach and reduce costs through economies of scale
- Raise the profile of each member business and the New Forest visitor economy locally, nationally and overseas
- A network of people in all the right places with the experience and expertise to help support and assist member businesses and community organisations in resolving tourism and visitor economy related issues and problems.
Key Take Away
- Go New Forest is the hub, spoke and guardian of the New Forest’s tourism and visitor economy
Destination Marketing Plan 2022
Aid the full recovery of the New Forest’s tourism and visitor economy by raising the domestic and international profile and awareness of the area as the classic English coast & countryside destination by delivering two main campaigns – “Turning over a Green Leaf” to promote the destination’s sustainable tourism efforts and “Taste the New Forest” to promote all that is great about the forest’s high-quality local produce and food & drink offer.
All 2022 marketing activity will follow the principles outlined in GNF’s Business Plan and utilise the forest’s unique cultural heritage, landscape, coastline, history, visitor economy, major events and towns & villages to provide the backdrop for all promotion to residents, day and staying visitors
Turning over a Green Leaf
The 2022 TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Award as the No.1 National Park in Europe and 10th best in the World, provides the perfect opportunity to launch GNF’s Green Leaf Tourism Business Scheme. “Turning over a Green Leaf” will promote the successes of GNF member businesses in using the scheme to develop and adopt a wide range of responsible operational improvements in their journey towards net zero and sustainability.
Taste the New Forest
Between 7 Apr – 31 Dec 2021, there were 400,360 food & drink business product and landing pages viewed on www.thenewforest.co.uk . This represents a 112% increase against the same period in 2019 and demonstrates the success of the very first “Taste the New Forest” campaign last year. By working in partnership with New Forest Marque members we aim to generate a similar rate of growth in consumer demand for local produce and food & drink from the 2022 campaign.
Staying Visitor: London, Central & Southern England.
Day Visitor: 90-minute drive time.
Local Visitor: New Forest, Bournemouth, Southampton and Portsmouth.
Secondary: Wider UK, Northern Europe, USA, Australia and New Zealand.
Target Audiences – Resident, Day & Staying Visitor
Young families (preschool – 14)
Intergenerational Family Groups (all ages)
Spending Kids Inheritance (Couples 50+)
Friendship/Activity Groups (all ages)
Tone of Voice
Aspirational but real, natural, dependable, safe, honest, relaxing and spiritually refreshing
Easy to reach: Only 90 minutes south west from London.
Old yet forever new: An inimitable English rural and seaside escape to a National Park with a unique cultural landscape heritage, history and special sense of place.
High quality: An inspirational and unmistakably high-quality destination providing great value visitor experiences for all through great local food & drink, accommodation, events and activities.
Memories for everyone: Happy childhood, family and romantic memories of escaping the everyday through the constantly changing colours of the seasons, the spirit of free-roaming animals and the great circle of life
Unspoilt and closer to nature: Quintessential English coast and countryside that people dream about, where imaginations awake through a sense of easy adventure and its abiding cycle of nature
Peace & Love: Fall in love with the peace and quiet of a special undisturbed place where you can hide away and recover from the frantic pace of the outside world.
Health & Vitality: A sense of freedom, wellbeing, refreshment & renewal. Walk, cycle or ride on over 150 miles of car free tracks all year round
Discovery: A place of great variety; explore pretty villages, learn about nature, visit historic houses and unique themed attractions leaving you wanting to return to uncover secrets yet discovered.
Environment: Leave your car behind and become carbon neutral by walking, cycling, horse-riding or electric bike or buy local and save distribution miles whilst supporting our local economy.
Save Money: Special offers and discounts all day long with the Go New Forest Card including specific member business offers throughout the area.
Book Direct The New Forest: “Best Rate Anywhere” specially incentivised accommodation guarantee
Destination Content, Newsletter & Blog Plans:
All 2022 destination marketing activity will be framed, co-ordinated and guided by three important support plans. These plans have been constructed using data and other related evidence generated from the 5 million pages viewed during the last year on www.thenewforest.co.uk as well as from the results of GNF’s 2021 destination press, PR and social media activities.
This scientific evidence base gives GNF, Travel Dog PR Agency and its member businesses, a very detailed framework of themes, subjects, seasonal interests, product types and key event content information all derived from our visitor’s own search data. By using this profiling information GNF and its member businesses can more effectively identify appropriate content and the timing with which to target our storytelling and offers to match the aspirations and needs of existing and potential consumers.
GNF regularly circulates its members with the Content, Newsletter & Blog Plans for both their own individual use and for contributing to, sharing and supporting all other destination activities and campaigns. The 12-month rolling cycle of these three documents enables everyone to continually advance plan their own individual storytelling and offers as well as contribute to wider delivery of the Destination Marketing Plan.
See Appendices 1, 2 & 3
(Updated 26 January 22)