Top storytellers to descend on Stellenbosch for #Stellenblog 2016

Stellenbosch will once again tell its story through the innovative use of online influencers for #Stellenblog 2016 when six local and international bloggers head to the town and its surrounds to share their personal Stellenbosch experiences.

Started in 2014, #Stellenblog forms part of the acclaimed destination marketing campaign, Stellenbosch Experience, developed by Destinate, in partnership with Stellenbosch Wine Routes and Stellenbosch 360, in order to grow Stellenbosch’s market share of domestic and international visitors.

The second iteration of the #Stellenblog influencer campaign in 2015 generated impressive results with 68 005 612 Opportunities to See (OTS) and an advertising value equivalent (AVE) of more than R22 million. Seven online influencers were introduced to the region and its people through a journey of food, wine, adventure, art, design, shopping and history. They took the world along on their journey, sharing their experiences on social media and their blogs using the hashtag #Stellenblog.

"We have seen a significant improvement in global awareness of Stellenbosch as a destination with a notable increase in visitor arrivals over the last 24 months. We believe the Stellenbosch Experience campaign and #Stellenblog played a major role in our region's tourism growth," says Annemarie Ferns, CEO of Stellenbosch 360, tasked with the tourism development and marketing mandate for the region.

During the week of 18 to 22 April 2016, bloggers will stay at a "secret villa" on one of the Stellenbosch wine farms and be given the opportunity to immerse themselves in the “Stellenbosch way of life”. Tailor-made itineraries are being designed around each blogger and their readership, and each day will involve a few surprise elements, challenging the traditional perceptions of Stellenbosch.

"The success of #Stellenblog has largely been due to the dynamic partnerships established between the wine and tourism industry of Stellenbosch, working together to change the perception that Stellenbosch is just about good wine. Working with online storytellers we are telling the world that Stellenbosch is the best place to base yourself for a few days to enjoy the best in wine tourism whilst discovering the surrounding regions like Cape Town and the nearby coastline," says Elmarie Rabe, Manager of the Stellenbosch Wine Routes.

The team of bloggers has been selected by Destinate and campaign partner, iAmbassador, the world's most representative blogger network, and includes some of the best-known travel, lifestyle and food bloggers in the world and South Africa.

International bloggers include:

Rob Lloyd of Stop Having a Boring Life from the USA

Luiz Hara of The London Foodie from the UK

Marvin Schönberg of Niedblog from Germany

Kiersten Rich of The Blonde Abroad from the USA

These international bloggers will be joined by two local South African travel and lifestyle bloggers:

Meruschka Govender of MzansiGirl  

Twiggy Moli of Sleepless in Soweto.

To make sure you don’t miss out on any of the action, follow the #Stellenblog hashtag on Twitter and Instagram or follow the action on our social stream here: stellenboschexperience.co.za/social-stream. For more information on the Stellenbosch Experience and reasons to visit the region for more than a wine tour, visit www.stellenboschexperience.co.za and keep an eye on #visitStellenbosch on social media.

The Stellenbosch Experience, a joint marketing venture between Stellenbosch Wine Routes and Stellenbosch 360, is made possible through multiple partnerships, including: Wesgro, Kleine Zalze, Spier, First Car Rental, L’Avenir and Delaire Graff Estate.

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