A KILTED Kingskettle man, who was once a finalist in the World’s Strongest Man competition, has been helping to encourage Germans to visit Scotland.
Jamie Barr has had his picture emblazoned on advertising pillars throughout Cologne’s city centre for the last fortnight, alongside the words: ‘Schottland. Willkommen in unserem Leben’, or ‘Scotland. Welcome to Our Life’.
Highland Games competitor Jamie, who is pictured wearing a kilt and holding a caber, is one of the faces of VisitScotland’s ‘Meet the Scots’ international marketing campaign, which generated £85 million for the Scottish economy in 2009.
The posters are just one part of an extensive consumer campaign both on and offline which will target potential German visitors across a number of major German cities with direct routes to Scotland.
Jamie, whose strongman career has seen him pulling aeroplanes and lifting cars, joked: “It’s funny to think of the reaction of shoppers across Cologne coming face to face with me and my caber!
“I really enjoyed doing the photo shoot and it’s great to be able to help promote Scotland, as well as the Highland Games.
“German people love Scottish traditions and I have competed in several Highland Games in Germany in the past so, I’m really aware just what an eye-catcher this will be.”
VisitScotland’s regional director, Richard Pinn, said: “With the potential to reach over a million people in Cologne, this poster campaign gives us a fantastic opportunity to tap into the German visitor market at a time of year when people are actively planning their holidays.
“We’re delighted to have secured the help of famous Fife athlete Jamie Barr in this campaign - just as the year of Active Scotland gets underway - and are confident that it will help to bring more visitors to Fife and the rest of Scotland.”
Verena Keimer, marketing manager at easyJet said: “We are delighted to provide travellers from the Cologne region with direct and affordable flights to the great destination Edinburgh.
“Thanks to the campaign with Jamie and VisitScotland, our new route will attract even more people.”
Visitors from Germany in 2009 made up some nine per cent of Scotland’s total international visitor profile and 11 per cent of spend.
“When it comes to international visitors to Scotland, the German market is second only to the United States for visitor numbers and spend.”