By Abey Mokgwatsane.

Identified as one of Africa’s top 12 cities with the highest growth potential according to the MasterCard African Cities Growth Index, Cape Town has everything going for it to continue to attract the world’s travellers.

The City of Cape Town is one of the most exciting cities in destination marketing these days. Unlike the traditional must-see city brands such as London, New York and Paris, Cape Town can be considered a Challenger Brand along with other coastal cities such as Melbourne, Rio de Janeiro and Barcelona – not to mention some newer African counterparts.

In a competitive market, with an increasing number of travellers, differentiation is key.

Cape Town Tourism has seen an opportunity to build and maximise on its brand and create a noise in the travel market by capitilising on what makes the city different. Other than its undeniable beauty Cape Town is iconic, complex and multifaceted – attributes such as freedom, inspiration, transformation and a vision for the future are among the attributes this brand has marketed to gain unique attention.

Cape Town Tourism has been working tirelessly to generate demand locally and domestically, ensure optimal visitor dispersal and spend, and improve the tourism industry’s capability to convert prospective business into revenue.

After the Soccer World Cup in 2010, Cape Town and South Africa cannot rely on big events to bring travellers to its shores, but need a strong, stand-out positioning. The “You don’t need a holiday, you need Cape Town” campaign is finding resonance with potential visitors and beckoning them with all the promise that the Mother City has to offer.

Abey Mokgwatsane is CEO at Ogilvy & Mather South Africa. Before that, he was CEO of the global brand experience agency VWV Group, which produced, among others, the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

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