Helping Hangzhou Better Understand European Visitors

Located just a couple of hours south of Shanghai, Hangzhou is the capital of Zhejiang Province and well known within China as a cultural hotspot and vacation destination. Once described by Marco Polo as “the finest and most splendid city in the world,” Hangzhou has become increasingly popular with travelers from outside China over the last few years. Visitors are attracted by the city’s cultural sites and outstanding natural beauty.

For the last few years, we’ve worked with Hangzhou Tourism Commission to raise the profile of the city to non-Chinese visitors and in August 2018, we launched an exciting Creative Partnership – the Hangzhou Pick ‘n’ Mix Service.


Developed by our Creative Partnerships team, the campaign encouraged travelers to interact with Hangzhou and ultimately, increase booking demand in the UK, France, Germany, and Netherlands. As an additional component of this campaign, we worked to help Hangzhou Tourism Commission better understand European visitors by delivering a bespoke report on traveler perceptions and preferences across all four of these markets.

We worked closely with Hangzhou to create a beautiful microsite where users are asked a series of questions about how they like to travel and the kinds of experiences they are looking for on their perfect trip. Based on these travel preferences, the Pick ‘n’ Mix Service produces customized and bookable itineraries, which provide unique insights into the wonders of Hangzhou, along with beautiful imagery and video content, designed to inspire travelers.


Aside from learning about all Hangzhou has to offer, visitors to the Pick ‘n’ Mix Service microsite can also book these itineraries through their local Expedia website. As an added incentive to interact, visitors are prompted to select five favorite attractions, cuisines, or activities to be entered to win a trip for two to the city.

During the campaign, the Hangzhou Pick ‘n’ Mix Service was promoted on Expedia’s local websites in the UK, Germany, France, and the Netherlands via a mix of promotional channels which included digital display advertising, PassportAds, social media, and dedicated newsletter content. The result was a highly successful campaign that attracted around 8,900 site visitors and generated over 3,500 competition entries during the campaign period.

Hangzhou-infographic - DMS amends (1)

Hangzhou Perfect Holiday Report

Post-campaign, we collaborated with Hangzhou Tourism Commission to produce our bespoke report, Hangzhou Perfect Holiday, which offered a comprehensive analysis of European traveler perceptions and preferences, based on campaign and competition responses, along with booking data. You can check out some the key findings below.

  • European visitors to Hangzhou most commonly travel with their partner, with 60 percent selecting this option. Cultural trips were the most popular with Europeans, followed by luxury vacations and then outdoor trips.
  • The top three cultural attractions among European travelers were named as Lingyin Temple, Hefang Ancient Street, and Thousand Island Lake. When it came to entertainment, the Grand Canal Night Cruise, West Lake Boat Cruise and Cycling and the ‘Impression of the West Lake’ performance were the most popular.
  • Interestingly, French tourists showed a preference for boat trips, while British travelers prioritized visiting Hangzhou’s many iconic landmarks. German and Dutch tourists were most interested in exploring Hangzhou’s enchanting corners.

The findings of the Hangzhou Perfect Holiday report will be used to optimize future campaign activity and by Hangzhou Tourism Commission to shape their tourism strategy for inbound European travelers. These insights will ensure that Hangzhou remains perfectly placed to welcome visitors from European markets; they will support Hangzhou’s continued development as a leading destination for international visitors from around the globe.

We loved working on this campaign with Hangzhou and unlocking the power of this partnership to not only engage with travelers, but also learn more about what makes them tick. Learn more about how our Creative Partnerships team delivers these unique and compelling media experiences across our global travel brands.