The owners of Montalto Estate, the Wilson Family, took the decision to open their private estate to the general public as a visitor attraction. In anticipation of Montalto’s opening in 2018 as a visitor attraction, ORNI was commissioned in 2017 to develop strategic and tactical marketing plans.
A key challenge was to advise how Montalto could successfully attract paying visitors to a new visitor offering whilst retaining the desirability and exclusivity of the estate.
In order to inform the development of a marketing strategy, ORNI carried out research and analysis including:
- Primary research with users and non-users of country estates across Northern Ireland
- Review of good practice of private estates in UK and Ireland
- Review of customer and market trends
- Review of competitors within Northern Ireland
Following this stage, ORNI developed the Marketing Strategy and in partnership with the client through workshops and consultation. The strategy details the vision and mission, the marketing objectives and puts forward the recommended plans across the full marketing mix including a product development plan, a pricing plan and visitor targets and profiling. ORNI employed the services of the brand agency, McCadden, to develop a brand proposition for Montalto.
As the final stage of the project, ORNI developed a Year 1 Marketing Plan. The plan details the actions and resources required to launch and promote the Estate in order to meet their marketing objectives for year 1.
Montalto Estate launched in September 2018, having developed a high-end visitor centre including tearoom and gift shop, network of woodland trails, natural adventure play and gardens. The Marketing Strategy developed by ORNI can be witnessed throughout the Estate and through its marketing and communications.
The Estate has enjoyed great success attracting over 100,000 visitors in its first year of opening and has won numerous awards including a 5-Star rating from Tourism NI.