Picture this, a brand you love and authentically engage with reaches out and offers you a personalised trip to experience all it has to offer.  Chances are, you will soak up every second of it and leave with a renewed passion for the brand and a broader understanding of it as a whole. Sound good? Well, it’s a great tool for brands to use within their PR strategy and is on the table for media and influencers alike in the hopes of securing great coverage.

What is a famil trip you might ask? Well, a famil trip is a media or influencer familiarisation trip that is offered to media and influencers on behalf of a brand to basically get them familiar with a destination, venue or product. The intention is that a journalist will then write a favourable story about their experience. Famil trips can take two forms, either there will be a small group of media who have an experience at the same time, or they can be individual trips.

Typically, famils are conducted by businesses in the tourism industry, however you don’t have to be a hotel or tourist attraction to use this tool. If you manage a venue, such as an attraction or restaurant, all you need to do is think about how you can create an experience that you can invite a journalist along to enjoy.

PR famils and individual trips/events are a great tool for capturing the full attention of your target media or influencers, while providing them with an intimate and personal experience of a brand.

Famils can range from a day trip to a weekend away, or if you’re a destination it can sometimes be a week-long trip you are organising to enable media and influencers to really get to know your destination and have an in-depth experience of all it has to offer.

Lightly put, famil trips can move mountains for a brand when it comes to PR results, and if you’re a new brand it could be a game changer.

Let’s take a look at a case study with Agent99’s longstanding client, Hunter Valley Gardens.     

Credit: Hunter Valley Gardens

Each year, Hunter Valley Gardens hosts its ‘Mega Creatures Night Safari’ for children and adults during the Easter school holidays, providing the ultimate dinosaur experience for all. Guests have the chance to explore the beautiful gardens while being treated to a close up look at the dinosaurs on display (where are the Jurassic fans at?!), with other creature friendly activities on offer such as digging for fossils as well as an array of food and drink options.

Agent99 was tasked with inviting media and influencers to attend the opening night and experience all that the Night Safari had to offer. The objectives were to drive ticket sales, increase buzz and excitement about the event ahead of the school holidays and to promote the all-new Night Safari event. We worked on securing top tier media to attend including KidSpot, Channel 7 and Sitchu, offering each of them free tickets to the experience and an overnight stay to make their trip extra special.

The results spoke for themselves, we achieved 50+ pieces of earned media/influencer coverage with a reach of over 6.7 million.

If you’re wanting to get your brand in front of the right consumers via intimate famil trips, here are some key tips to keep in mind when planning an experience:

  • Know your audience

Understanding your target audience is critical to the success of a famil. Research the journalists and influencers who write about your industry or area of expertise prior to inviting them. By contacting the right journalist, you are more likely to get them to attend your famil and write about their experience with your brand.

  • It’s all in the itinerary!

If you are a destination or a multi-faceted brand that has lots to offer and you’re wanting to get a whole heap of experiences packed into a trip, having a solid itinerary is key. It gives you the chance to map out exactly what you want your guests to do. It’s also nice to give them the opportunity to contribute if there is something they are dying to do while on the trip. Key tip, a jam-packed itinerary is no fun for anyone if there is not enough time to sleep and rest, so pace the trip and only include the most important experiences.

  • Be clear on the deliverables

If you are offering guests a free experience, you are certainly going to want to see the ROI, and deciding what you want from the beginning is very important. If you’re inviting a top-tier news media outlet and wanting to secure a 2-page feature, you have to be upfront about this from the start. 9 times out of 10, media will only accept the opportunity go on a famil if they are comfortable offering this in return.

  • Be the host with the most

A famil needs to be engaging and educational, and as the host your job is to do just that. If the host is passionate and enthusiastic when showcasing the business, it can make for a more engaging and memorable experience. It is also important for the hosts to be welcoming to the journalists as they are out of their comfort zone. They will appreciate the friendliness and consideration, and are more likely to remember you and your business once the famil is over.

If you’re thinking about hosting a famil trip for your brand, please get in touch to hear Agent99 can support you.

Agent Hollie