Our client, Turda Salt Mine, is an important international tourist attraction. It is one of the most spectacular tourist destinations in Transylvania, as well as in Romania. Its extraordinary setting and benefits attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. It is one of the few Romanian sites listed in the famous Michelin travel guide with 2 of 3 Michelin stars. In fact, Turda Salt Mine is the only tourist salt mine in Romania that was included in this prestigious guide.
01. The Challenge
Redesign the business model and clarify the actionable lines to achieve ambitious goals
When we started to work with Turda Salt Mine, we realized that the Brandocracy team could also have a relevant, direct impact on redesigning the business model. By employing the right marketing and communication strategies, we could lead the business towards an entirely new level. Our client’s main challenges were perfectly clear:
- Increase the number of visitors – tourists and locals alike.
- Optimise the flow of tourists so that the volume of visits is fairly distributed over the entire week and the whole year, not only on weekends or during the high tourist season (holidays).
- Integrate all the company’s sites – the saltworks, the hotel, the didactic swimming pool, the freshwater pool, and the spa area – into a single concept both in terms of business and marketing positioning, together with the communication strategy.
- Create a website with a modern design that would support the new communication approach.
- Increase the awareness and attractiveness of the Turda Salt Mine among Romanian and foreign tourists.
02. Our approach
Analysis, diagnosis, and research
The Brandocracy team members who worked on this project, applied, from the start, a 360 degree approach. It means that the analysis, diagnosis, and research took into account all aspects of the business – the salt mine with all its elements, but also the neighboring area: the city of Turda and its surroundings, its history, the tourist and cultural destinations, the local traditions and stories.
We had a series of meetings with members of the management team and the support-departments, as well as with the operational staff, including salt mine guides. We conducted a complex ethnographical study together with our partner, IRSOP. In addition, we visited all the key-sites of Turda Salt Mine, and we interviewed the Romanian and foreign tourists on the site.
As a result, we answered the company’s challenges with practical solutions and recommendations that would also support the achievement of its objectives.
The entire brand building and marketing strategy, starting with its pillars, up to the key-messages, were designed with the client’s perspective in focus. Our recommendations are flexible enough to adapt to external changes, which represents an important advantage for the success of the project.
03. Our solutions
An infinite source of health
Building the concept
When we launched ourselves into building the concept, we took into account the international relevance of the brand and its great potential to support the social and economical development of the region. Thus, the Brandocracy team decided to build a solid, yet flexible base-concept, that could easily be adapted and implemented, to serve the various objectives. This manner of working proves very efficient for communication purposes, especially in difficult times.
In order to build a strong, strategic foundation, we identified and agreed upon the strategic pillars that would support the brand: the unique Experience in a Spectacular natural setting, giving access to a precious, Healthy natural resource – the salt. At 120 m depth, where the Turda Salt Mine is set, the environment is so pure, that no bacteria can survive.
The entire strategy was built around the main element – the salt: the healing effect, the man-earth connection, and the environment. The reference points in our brand building were the salt and the miners who had previously worked in the salt mine, providing the three strategic pillars: Experience, Spectacularity, and Health. The approach of the Brandocracy consultants also redefined the values of the Turda Salt Mine brand. We saw how Spectacular this place in the depth of the Earth is, its uniqueness in the world. We learned what a fantastic journey it offers, full of unique Experiences, and how the salt mine is a natural source of Health and a land of Legend, full of magic and enchantment.
We defined the key messages and the principles at the base of the Turda Salt Mine concept. We also articulated the organizational mission.
In addition, besides the salt mine itself, we integrated, in the strategy, the technical equipment, along with the entertainment area and – very important – the natural elements, which offer real health benefits for the respiratory system.
The marketing positioning statement resulted from our entire analysis. The brand message emerged clearly: the Turda Salt Mine is the most spectacular underground, man-built site in the world.
The marketing strategy
The marketing strategy involved rethinking and integrating the different aspects related to consumer typologies and designed a communication plan that was both coherent and flexible when it came to implementation. For all this to be possible, we took into account the different behaviors of national and international clients.
We also recommended our client connecting the salt mine with all the other important tourist destinations in Turda, when designing the services and communication packages.
Creating and implementing the new www.salinaturda.eu website was a complex endeavor. We had to bring structure to the new brand elements while employing a modern design and integrating functions that would translate into a positive user experience. One of the website’s purposes is to also generate referral links and a positive impact on our client’s business.
We also provided copywriting for the web pages in Romanian, as well as the translation and adaptation of the texts in two other languages.
Research and delivery of the brand building and marketing strategy
Creating the modern, custom-designed website
In Romania, one can find tourist destinations and areas that are filled with historical relevance, art, traditions, and legends. All these elements render our country a special „something”, not found anywhere else in the world, while the natural environment completes and enriches the story.
We see the Brandocracy project for Turda Salt Mine as a personal contribution to the image of Romanian tourism, an open message, an invitation for tourists in Romania and around the world.