A campaign is under way to promote Deeside’s unique range of visitor activities.
Businesses and communities have combined to launch “Royal Deeside: Can Do Country”, highlighting attractions through ground-breaking ‘augmented reality’ and other innovations.
Harnessing a theme that also reflects a rapid local recovery from setbacks caused by the Ballater flooding, it will link a diverse promotional mix, including setting up a Royal Deeside travel channel on YouTube and using specially-shot film for various social media and other outlets.
A key aim is to explore use of ‘augmented reality’ so that, in a Pokémon Go-style process, visitors can simply point a mobile device to local landmarks or other attractions to trigger on-screen interpretive videos via a free recognition software ‘app’.
Conventional tourist activities from historic sightseeing to golf, and participation and tuition in pursuits including gliding, wildlife photography and fly fishing, will feature prominently.
Launching the brand, Aberdeenshire Provost Hamish Vernal said: “Royal Deeside is an extremely popular destination for people from nearby Aberdeen, the rest of Britain and worldwide, but this is a community that thinks ahead.
“It has taken fresh stock of its assets and its potential in order to build visitor numbers steadily and sustainably.”
Local steering group chairman Richard Watts said: “The purpose of our campaign is to highlight our capabilities and help visitors to more easily identify and take part in fulfilling, or even challenging, activities for which they might like help in experiencing or mastering.”
Group member Councillor Geva Blackett added: “Though the £14,000 first-year budget is not massive, the use of innovative promotion, centred around high quality film, social media and interpretive assets, which can also be used by individual local businesses, gives us good potential to effectively reach target audiences and provides a strong longer-term legacy of material.”