Last week our client, Tresco Island, not only hosted Will and Kate during their royal visit to the Duchy, it also welcomed award-winning homewares designer Sophie Conran.

A key component to our 2016 strategy for Tresco Island is leveraging the benefits from brand partnerships.  Having secured an exciting relationship with Sophie Conran, our digital team ran Tresco’s first official Facebook Live broadcast during an exclusive potting design workshop with Sophie in Tresco’s world-famous Abbey Garden.

To ensure Tresco is at the forefront of the digital trend, joining leading travel brands such as Conde Nast Traveler and National Geographic Travel, we instigated the use of this informal live-video platform.

Launched April 2016, Facebook Live provides brands with the opportunity to share behind-the-scenes stories with consumers and offer real-time interaction: Facebook’s early research reveals viewers interact 10 times more with Facebook Live videos than regular ones.

Social media has long been an invaluable tool for travel PR and a significant influencer in the holiday decision-making process. So with Facebook Live providing an intimate way to connect with and inspire audiences, it is a great way for travel brands to invite consumers to experience, or revisit, a destination.

We know Tresco’s captive audience long to visit the island more regularly so using live video provides an opportunity for them to reminisce and immerse themselves in the brand. It also gives new audiences – especially when tapping into a complementary brand’s fans to maximise exposure, like we did with Sophie Conran – a taste of the destination, helping stimulate a desire to visit.


Sophie Conran’s beautiful award-winning Portmeirion crockery range has long taken pride of place throughout Tresco Island’s luxurious cottages. The Wild West team secured the exciting partnership with Sophie Conran, which includes a competition to win a holiday to Tresco and a visit for Sophie to the island to explore a potential Tresco-inspired range, as well as hosting a potting design workshop in Abbey Garden with curator Mike Nelhams, and of course plenty of digital and social media activity.

Sophie and Mike’s workshop and Abbey Garden tour were broadcast in three live videos throughout the evening of 31st August 2016, on Tresco’s Facebook.  The series of broadcasts inviting Tresco and Sophie Conran fans to interact and ask questions during the workshop received over 2,000 views, a strong introduction for Tresco to Facebook Live.

Our top tips for using Facebook Live for travel brands:

  • Plan: as with any promotional activity. Although this is informal video content it still requires planning – who, where, when, how long for?
  • Brief: make sure all involved are briefed and, if it’s an event then remember to interact and address your Facebook Live audience too.
  • Build in a ‘call-to-action’ – invite viewers to engage, ask questions and respond in real-time (if your format permits).
  • Promote: let your fans know you will be broadcasting live and encourage them to join you during, or after, the event.

Philippa Hill - Wild West Comms

Words: Philippa Snell

Account Director at Wild West Comms