Last year, we were given the opportunity to partner with Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority – on a specific challenge: raising its profile with vacationers in the United Kingdom through an integrated marketing campaign using online, social media and outdoor advertising.
Almost everybody knows that Abu Dhabi – the capital of United Arab Emirates – is home to crystal blue skies, year-round sunny weather and warm sparkling waters. That’s because, over recent years, Abu Dhabi has put itself on the worldwide travel map with its high-profile golf tournaments, stunning sky-scraper hotels and gorgeous desert vistas. Building on this growing recognition, Abu Dhabi wanted to more firmly embed itself as a top-of-mind holiday option for travelers in the United Kingdom.
We worked with the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority to develop an integrated marketing campaign that would reach just the United Kingdom travelers. This entailed digital display and social media marketing as well as out of home advertising (featured on both the London Tube and Rail) geared towards weary working commuters, drawing attention to the allure of a sunny and distinctive Abu Dhabi holiday.
To get people thinking about amazing Abu Dhabi, thought-provoking factoids about the seaside desert wonderland were adapted into Expedia’s recognizable and ongoing “Travel Yourself Interesting” brand message. On social media, followers were asked to tag their “mundane” tweets with #TYI (Travel Yourself Interesting) for a chance to win a trip for two. Next, a bold online marketing campaign was launched on expedia.co.uk. The strategy here was twofold: For customers not ready to travel straightaway, advertising promoted the virtues of Abu Dhabi as the ideal destination for their next holiday; for those “ready to pack” travelers, messaging and functionality was designed to close the sale on-the-spot.
During the course of the two month promotion more than 3.2 million potential customers saw the online and out of home ads – producing an increase of more than 13,000 clicks directly to the Abu Dhabi landing page. The effort was also extremely cost-effective, with an Incremental Return on Investment (ROI) of 4:1, meaning each dollar spent on the campaign returned 4 incremental dollars in Abu Dhabi bookings directly from the target audience in the United Kingdom.
Using a mix of different channels can be a great way to drive home a message by reaching people with engaging content online while also connecting with them in “the real world.” Learn more about how social media campaigns drive outcomes.