Barbados Meets Latin America

Overview & Challenge

Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc (BTMI), the island’s official tourism board, enlisted CIIC as its PR agency for Latin America to launch a multinational campaign that would position the island as a top Caribbean tourism provider for the region. CIIC was tasked with promoting Barbados in five key markets leveraging the launch of a new Copa Airlines direct flight from Panama to Barbados in July 2018 that would connect the island to the rest of Latin America. This was to be the first route between both territories and would create more accessibility for Latin Americans to visit the destination.

Based on marketing analytics, the agency focused on creating a plan that would zone in on markets with high-income levels and potential business growth and investment, including Panama, Argentina, Colombia, Brazil, and Chile. In these markets, our strategy was to capture the interest of travelers, families and cultural enthusiasts interested in sports, romance, gastronomy and multigenerational travel. Our objectives included successfully launching the Copa Airlines inaugural flight to Barbados and positioning the route as the first gateway from Barbados to Latin America; emphasizing the history between Barbados and Panama and spreading awareness of the island's cultural bona fides; attracting new Latin American travelers to Barbados through the new route, creating an ongoing relationship between traveler and destination; highlighting Barbados' unique landscape, cultural activities and amenities with the specific Latin America traveler taste in mind.


With strong ties in the Latin American markets and knowledge of their respective interests, we worked to identify the best contacts at the major lifestyle and trade publications on behalf of the BTMI. To maximize impact, we planned a week-long press trip beginning in July with the inaugural flight launch in Panama, leading to multiple days in Barbados, detailed with an itinerary including key destination selling points. We created a custom hashtag to encourage attendees to post on social media. Because traditional travel agencies are still the preferred option for Latin American travelers, we included key travel agents in our campaign activities and created a Barbados sales training video in Spanish. The launch event, managed alongside Copa Airlines, included a press conference and interview opportunities with top Barbados tourism officials. Prior to the inaugural flight, the agency planned a 100- plus guest event and press conference in Panama to showcase local gastronomy and offer media and industry a preview of the new Copa partnership. The event featured Barbados’ top Chef and Mixologist, both recognized in the Caribbean region for their multiple accolades, Bajan entertainment star Rupert Clark (known as Rupee) and one of Barbados’ top steel pan players. We created a vibe that was authentically Bajan.

In addition to the launch event, with Argentina being one of the top organic markets for visitors to Barbados in Latin America, CIIC crafted an experience around FIT, the country's leading tourism fair. The activation included a Polo Night event with top media and movers and shakers in which Argentina Polo Day, the country's leader for the exclusive sport, curated a friendly match with Barbados.


  • Secured coverage in 7+ daily newspapers and newscasts

  • 3 million+ media impressions from more than 30 features

  • 872.2k+ Social Media Impressions from Influencers