In Spite of Corona — International Press Trip was Followed by 17 Articles in Premium Media
How do you write a pitch to a foreign journalist that would truly encapsulate Estonia – one of the most digital countries in the world, where one can find as much nature as great ideas, smart people and unique opportunities to invest on every corner? Last spring, the idea of a press trip came to light in cooperation with our dear client Enterprise Estonia (more specifically, Invest Estonia, e-Estonia, e-residency, Trade with Estonia and Visit Estonia). By the end of the day, even a country with great charm and newsworthy content like Estonia is difficult to condense into a mere email. Then why not just show instead what this country, where so many unicorns have sprung, is all about?
Why not just show instead what this country, where so many unicorns have sprung, is all about?
The circumstances were tricky – while in summer of 2021 Estonians were experiencing a life with little to none restrictions, most other countries did not enjoy the same privileges. When we made our first contacts with foreign press in early July, we were met with astonishment – is someone really organizing a press trip right now? Some foreign journalists had only been writing down their thoughts between the walls of their homes for quite a while now. But when restrictions are created, so are opportunities to operate within them, aren’t they?
Thus, in August, 10 international journalists arrived in Estonia, later writing up 17 articles that were published in international premium media.
- How can we build a captivating program that sparks interest in journalists of different fields, while also ensuring a safe trip for everyone?
CREATING A COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM
To ensure the safety of the participants, we were strict with the rules: we expected participants to be vaccinated, made masks mandatory, despite not being required in Estonia at the time – all in order for those coming from different countries to feel safe even in the midst of a global pandemic. We made sure that people always had space to distance in every part of the program, and offered journalists the opportunity to participate online. 10 journalists from the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Latvia physically attended the press trip, and one journalist joined the press trip online.
The program created in cooperation with Enterprise Estonia covered several different fields. The common denominator of the journalists was business lifestyle, which allowed us to invite journalists from technology, startup, travel and lifestyle publications – the program was also built having this target group in mind.
In this way, journalists got an overview of the developments of our digital society, business opportunities, startups and the business environment, while also getting a glance at the local life here – our nature and urban space.
MEETINGS WITH SPEAKERS FROM PUBLIC SECTOR REPRESENTATIVES TO TECHNOLOGY EXPERTS
Over the course of three days, we introduced Estonia’s unique combination of digital and natural – hence the title of the press trip “Digitally Wild”, the concept which would have been difficult to explain to foreign journalists simply by e-mail or telephone call.
During the trip, we took journalists to a sauna, created an opportunity to have a chat with President Kersti Kaljulaid over a cup of coffee, listen to Prime Minister Kaja Kallas’ thoughts on the concept of a digital country and working out, order kama chocolate with Starship robots, discover the Estonian startup landscape in both Telliskivi and Ülemiste City, dine with ministers and taste dishes prepared by top Estonian chefs. The cherry on top was an unexpected meeting with a living legend, composer Arvo Pärt, in person.
The courage to adapt to the circumstances and the ability to find opportunities in the context of limited conditions paid off.
The courage to adapt to the circumstances and the ability to find opportunities in the context of limited conditions paid off. The press trip brought together journalists from publications such as The Economist, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, Forbes, Sifted, Computer Weekly, Tech.eu, ID Connect, US Today, Handelsblatt and others. Our guests praised both the exceptionally interesting program and the high level of organization. A big round of applause to all the guests and spokespeople, who were keen to follow the agreed special restrictions.
ARTICLES IN PREMIUM MEDIA
spokespersons from public sector to high-tech companies and start-ups