British couple go on Irish holiday directed by social media

13 Jun 2012

In a new campaign by Tourism Ireland, Facebook and Twitter users are being asked to decide where Tyler and Amy Slade will stay and what they will do on their Irish holiday.

The couple from Brighton are embarking on a mystery tour of Ireland – mysterious to them as they have no idea where they’re going until the public tell them.

Social media communities will have the power to direct Tyler and Amy’s itinerary and by solving clues about their next destination.

The Ireland Mystery Tour campaign hopes to showcase all of the country’s scenery and attractions and boost visitors coming from the UK market – which accounts for more than 50pc of all overseas visitors to Ireland.

The predictably twee format involves a four-legged tour guide by the name of Baaarry the sheep. Each day, Baaarry will present the couple with a cryptic clue about where they need to go next and social media users in the UK will be asked to help Tyler and Amy in solving this. They will also be able to vote on where the Slades go and the activities they do.

Now on day three of their journey, so far Tyler and Amy have been sailing on Carlingford Lough, camping in Kilkeel, climbed Slemish mountain and played disc golf through the Mourne Mountains. Further suggestions are already coming through on Facebook and Twitter and Tourism Ireland expects to reach about 2m people with the campaign.

For every clue solved and activity completed, the couple will win points. Clocking up enough will see them spend their final leg of the journey in a five-star hotel; too few and they’ll only make it to a scenic campsite.

“Our latest social media initiative should prove to be a really effective way of engaging with online communities around Britain, really bringing our message of fun and friendliness to life,” said Vanessa Markey, Tourism Ireland’s head of Great Britain. “By placing our couple, Tyler and Amy, in the hands of our social media communities, they’ll be taken on a whirlwind tour of some of the best hidden spots and iconic experiences around the island of Ireland. And, by bringing potential holidaymakers around GB along for the journey, we’re hoping to inspire them to begin planning their very own Irish holiday.”

Travelling in a campervan, the couple are sharing their journey through videos, photos and posts to their blog.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.