Initiatives undertaken by London Universities International Partnerships (LUIP) included engaging Chinese superstar bloggers to push a “This is London” showcase campaign in China, which was seen by 28 million Chinese on the Weibo platform and a staggering 40 million on QQ.
The showcase aimed at communicating what London has to offer both as a world leading study destination and as a global city for tourism and business, generated a total following of 104,058 for the official Weibo sites in just 10 days.
A Guinness World Record for the most people throwing mortar boards simultaneously was also set during the London showcase.
Meanwhile, in India, LUIP forged an alliance with a national jobs portal FirstNaukri.com to promote London-educated graduates back in India and also enjoyed some targeted promotion from London Mayor Boris Johnson on a trip to India. His trip coincided with an alumni event held in Delhi with local businesses invited.
A thorough UK visit for two Indian journalists was also organised to combat negative press reports
Research was undertaken with 3,000 Indian employers about the benefits of London and a press campaign conducted on its findings; a thorough UK visit for two Indian journalists was also organised to combat negative press reports about the UK as a study destination.
A London Study Ambassador scheme was also launched and promoted in India and the USA, offering selected students the chance to enjoy (and promote via social media) a year-long programme of activities that includes access to cultural icons in the capital and professional enhancement events.
LUIP comprises of 16 institutional partners – and it is keen to work with other capital organisations, including those outside of the HE sphere – as it moves into its second year.
A promotional film used on Chinese social media platforms, “The best big city on earth”
Gary Davies, Chair of LUIP, told The PIE, “We were keen to establish collaborations, in London and in each key market, with stakeholders, partners and businesses. We realised the value of scale when staging in-country activities, enjoyed strong support from London & Partners, and were all keen to leverage the power of the London brand.”
Future plans include a targeted promotional event in China that will take place in October this year, focusing on the strong reputation London enjoys in the arts and for innovation.