We were delighted to be announced the winners of the Ideas Guernsey Hackthon this weekend. Our Guernsey and Jersey offices came together in mind, body and matching t-shirts (!) to participate in the Hackathon at the Digital Greenhouse in Guernsey.

The event was held by VisitGuernsey and Hewlett Packward Enterprise Services (HPES) with the workshop posing the challenge:

‘How can technology promote the Island to visiting cruise liner passengers?’

In 2016, Guernsey welcomed more than 130,000 cruise line visitors. Approximately 70% of them used wi-fi on island and 80% of that group used apps on their smartphones. After our morning debriefing, we aimed to tackle the following problems for VisitGuernsey:

  • How can Guernsey initially reach cruise line visitors as potential consumers?
  • Once engaged how can Guernsey encourage visitors to explore and spend on the Island?
  • How can this digital solution be beneficial to both the visitor and Guernsey businesses?
  • How can this digital solution be supported with a viable business model?

Unlike a traditional hackathon involving development and coding, this was a predominantly conceptual event where the four participating teams were asked to use the HPES tools provided to create a business model and wireframe for their digital solutions. 

Suitably caffeinated and working with a team mentor, the majority of our morning was taken up brainstorming ideas. We were also given the opportunity to discuss ideas with useful advisors and professionals including members of the HPES team, Sure and a cruise representative. The remaining hours of our day were fairly hectic, wireframing our mobile app and putting together our final presentation to deliver to the judges.

So… What was our final product?

An integrated digital solution that:

  • Engaged users in their port research phase (marketing)
  • Ensured visitors access to island wide wifi (partnership with Sure)
  • Enhanced the visitor experience while on island (mobile app)
  • Provided a platform through which local businesses could increase revenue and profitability (mobile app)
  • Provided monetisation via marketing opportunities for local businesses and access to visitor activity data (mobile app)
  • Built a data profile of visitors for VisitGuernsey (mobile app)
  • Ensured opportunity to remarket to visitors in future (data capture and remarketing)

We realised that this challenge would need much more than downloading an app to fulfil VisitGuernsey’s objectives. We needed marketing to initially encourage visitors to get our app and once downloaded, ensure the app had connectivity across the island.

The mobile app itself included an itinerary planner, drag and drop diary planner, interactive map, ‘hot spot’ locator, share your experience social media incentives and the ability for visitors to book online and receive special offers.

We also felt it integral that our digital solution created opportunity for VisitGuernsey to contact visitors once they had left the island. A port stop in Guernsey is a great taster of what the island has to offer and we wanted to ensure that visitors could be targeted with the incentive to come back on holiday and get the full experience of what Guernsey has to offer.

Watching the final presentations, we realised the standards were set high with all of the teams pitching great concepts. Considering the tight competition, we were delighted to be announced the winners and look forward to seeing where the concept may be taken by VisitGuernsey in the future.