Much marketing noise has been made over the return of Game of Thrones this month. The series’ network, HBO, and Tourism Ireland have today (17 July) joined in the cacophony with an altogether more old-school campaign: the unveiling of a 77-metre long, Bayeux-style tapestry.
Devised by Publicis London to promote Northern Ireland as a key set location for the series, the final tapestry will be woven from Thomas Ferguson’s – one of the last surviving linen mills in Northern Ireland. The design depicts a number of classic scenes from the show, including Bran Stark's ‘fall’ from the Winterfell tower in episode one and the infamous Red Wedding.
New sections of the tapestry will be revealed each week as series seven’s episodes are broadcast. Supported by Tourism NI, Tourism Ireland will share the new stories on social media, with Instagram Stories, timelapse videos of the weaving process and cinemagraphs (living photographs) pinpointed as key distribution methods.
Each piece of creative will drive traffic to a Tourism Ireland microsite, where fans of the show can view the full tapestry via an interactive web app. From here they can also share their favourite woven moments on social media, learn where scenes were filmed in Northern Ireland and build an itinerary for a trip to the country.
The physical tapestry will be hung in the Ulster Museum, while the campaign rolls out today in 10 markets across the globe. It follows last year’s ‘Doors of Thrones' campaign.
Niall Gibbons, chief executive of Tourism Ireland, said: “TV and film are recognised as strong influencers on travellers everywhere and the stellar popularity of Game of Thrones is a fantastic opportunity for us to promote Northern Ireland to a huge audience of potential visitors. Fans will see our ads, spiking their curiosity about the landscapes and locations featured in the series and inspiring them to come and explore them for themselves.
“Our specially created Game of Thrones tapestry is another truly innovative way to showcase the destination – creating a lasting legacy and a new visitor attraction to enhance the Game of Thrones experience here for fans when they visit.”