April 28, 2022

The Big Hoot Hemel Hempstead

Hemel Hempstead owl trail attracts families into town with help of high street app

Created on 25/04/22

What does the LoyalFree app do?

LoyalFree is a multi-award-winning place promotion app, designed to boost footfall and sales in town and city centres across the UK. App users can enjoy interactive trails, enter competitions, find local events, and discover digital loyalty cards and exclusive deals from their favourite independents, all on their smartphone! 

What is a trail on the LoyalFree app?

The LoyalFree app tours & trails feature works by grouping together businesses to make life easier for the app user. For example, a trail could see a group of businesses combined into one easy-to-access place which customers can use to complete their Mother’s Day shopping or discover a Gluten Free trail that promises to help those with dietary requirements dine out safely.

The Big Hoot Hemel Hempstead

The Big Hoot Hemel Hempstead was a free, fun, family-friendly art trail produced by Wild In Art, in partnership with Dacorum Borough Council and Hemel Hempstead Business Improvement District. This exciting trail saw 12 individually designed Big Hoot owls placed around Hemel Hempstead town centre, Hemel Old Town, Gadebridge Park and the Watergardens for everyone to see and enjoy. Each Owl was designed by a professional artist and had a story to tell.

The trail was live for 2 months, finishing just after the Easter period to ensure plenty of time for participants to enjoy the fun activity.

The results:

The trail attracted 6,756 views on the app

1,356 people Started the Trail

A total of 9,058 scans were collected across the 12 locations

The trail successfully encouraged the public to discover more of the town with an average of 10 locations scanned by app users. Over the course of the 2 months the trail was live, over 1300 new users signed up the LoyalFree app in Hemel Hempstead.

What made this successful?

The trail launched just before the February half term, offering families a free fun activity to take part in over the break. Installations were placed in locations across the town, the large, brightly coloured owls were guaranteed to peak the interest of passers-by. Paired with brilliant marketing both on social media and by distributing A5 leaflets around the town and also by endorsing the trail with an exciting prize, the trail managed to attract over 1000 people to Hemel Hempstead town centre! 

Informative and colourful plaques accompanied each installation, the plaques clearly sign-posted visitors to the LoyalFree app and featured a QR code to scan. The trail was endorsed by a competition – scan to check-in at all locations to be in with a chance of winning £100 to spend in one of the wonderful Hemel Hempstead businesses along the trail route. The prize incentive encouraged visitors to seek out every location along the trail with great success, on average, those who took part scanned at 10 locations.

Gail Buckland, from Hemel Hempstead BID said: “The Big Hoot Hemel Hempstead has been an exciting way for both locals and visitors to explore the town. LoyalFree has been a great asset by allowing app users to not only complete the trail but to also discover the wonderful independent businesses along the way, I would highly recommend using LoyalFree for digital trails.”

Alan Anderson, portfolio holder for planning and infrastructure said: “We are delighted with the success of the owls throughout Hemel Hempstead. It was very successful project that saw 1356 people start the trail, and we were so sad to see the owls had flown off when the project ended. Thank you to Wild In Art and Hemel BID for working with Dacorum Borough Council to create such a unique experience.”

If you’re interested in using the app in the town then download the app here: www.loyalfree.co.uk/download or by searching for ‘LoyalFree’ on the iOS and Android app stores. 

If you’d like to know more about how an app could support your area then please email [email protected] to request more information.