In December 2017, the unique rainmaker VISTA.360 virtual tours, powered by Google Street View Trusted, was viewed by more than 3 million people. This means that 3 million potential guests were focused on Namibia, an incredible milestone. 10 months later, that figure already increased to more than 13 million and it keeps growing due to rainmaker’s activities.
This is more than an average of 18,630 views per day since the very first VISTA.360 virtual tours by rainmaker were published and a record 32,500 views per day throughout the past 5 months.
This marks an astonishing achievement for Namibia as a destination and a great prospect for rainmaker digital’s Hospitality and Tourism customers.
Since its launch in 2016, rainmaker has built a solid and stable customer base, most of which are based in Namibia and South Africa. Thomas Müller, the founder and CEO of rainmaker, started rainmaker digital after 7 years in the Namibian Tourism and Hospitality industry and with extended experience from his involvement with TUI and Thomas Cook. His everyday exposure to the digital marketing field while being General Manager of Marketing & IT at O&L Leisure Hotels & Lodges led to the realisation that Namibia’s and Southern Africa’s digital presence could be dramatically improved.
According to Chris McIntyre, Managing Director of the Tour Operator Expert Africa, “rainmaker’s great 360s have helped us bring Namibia, and many of its lodges and camps, to life for our website’s visitors. Working with them has vastly improved the images and perspectives that our prospective visitors can see on Namibia, and they have certainly helped us to persuade more visitors to visit this stunningly beautiful country.” rainmaker digital is the only Google Street View Trusted Agency in Namibia and one of only seven Trusted Agencies in the whole of Africa.
rainmaker has created more traffic and impact with its VISTA.360 service than any other travel related website in Namibia. Putting Namibia as a destination and the participating hotels, lodges, guest houses, guest farms, etc. at the very forefront of the digital marketing landscape in Southern Africa.
To put this into perspective, according to the global web statistics platform alexa.com1, one of the largest Tourism WebSite in Namibia gets around 650,550 views per year, less than 5% of what rainmaker has achieved for its customers and the Destination.
The VISTA.360 virtual tours have a significant impact on rainmaker customers’ business in terms of occupancy, revenue, reputation and profit. From the 13.68 million visitors, more than 528,000 of all visitors took action on the immersive virtual tours they saw. Either by visiting the respective accommodation website (159,600 or 30% of all actions), asking for directions while they were planning their itinerary (346,800 or 66% of all actions) or directly calling the property by phone (21,600 or 4% of all actions).
The VISTA.360 virtual tour is a critical element, especially for accommodation providers. “rainmaker’s 360° tour is the most amazing sales and marketing tool for online bookings and our tour operator partners. We have been overwhelmed with more than 2,591,000 views of Twyfelfontein Country Lodge in 15 months. I am really happy we went for it because it significantly added to our bookings" says Riaan Brand of Twyfelfontein Country Lodges.
“rainmaker provides the respective virtual tour footage free-of-charge to local and global tour operators to further improve the visibility and the business of our customers”, says Thomas “It is all about partnering and collaboration within the Namibian Hospitality and Tourism Industry. The entire rainmaker focus is to create a competitive advantage for the local in-destination hospitality and tourism businesses, against the global and market dominating giants and to gain more tourism spend remaining in the Country.” Müller continuous.