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Campaign Business Media Brand of the Year 2020
Travel Media Awards Trade Publication of the Year 2020 - Print & Online

Marketing insight from the Travel Marketing Awards winners

What makes a truly standout marketing idea? Abra Dunsby catches up with four winners from this year’s prestigious Travel Marketing Awards to find out

The Secret Life of Five Year Olds On Holiday was a winning marketing idea for Thomas Cook
The Secret Life of Five Year Olds On Holiday was a winning marketing idea for Thomas Cook

Be a team player

Laura Stone, senior marketing manager at Princess Cruises, won the Tomorrow’s Travel Marketing Leader award.


What inspired you to choose a marketing career?
I loved the appeal of a job that would allow me to pull together my creative and organisational skills.


Marketing highlight?

As part of our GDPR preparations last year, we worked with agency VideoSmart to create personalised, emailable videos for re-permissioning our database. The videos used data about the guests’ previous holiday with Princess Cruises to create a sense of nostalgia and included a call to action to opt back in, so as not to miss out on future offers.


What were the results?

The campaign not only produced great opt-in results, but the video also went viral on LinkedIn.


What qualities do you need to be a marketer of tomorrow?

Creativity and innovation – the marketing landscape is constantly changing and consumers have decreasing attention levels, so achieving standout for your brand is paramount. Being a team player is key – very few marketing campaigns can be achieved alone.

Stone's top trends to look out for in 2019

1. Keep up to date. Influencer marketing will continue to grow but become a lot more regulated and measurable.
2. Go interactive. This type of video is still fairly new, but I see more brands engaging their customers with it over the next couple of years, especially with the first interactive film recently airing on Netflix.
3. Get the message out. Automated communications are now expected by consumers, so marketing teams need the right systems to manage their customer data and messaging to the right person at the right time. It sounds basic, but in reality is hard to achieve.
4. Target. As more types of media become available programmatically, smaller brands can invest in the likes of broadcast or out-of-home in a much more targeted fashion on modest budgets.

Identify decision makers

Dentsu Aegis Network won the Innovative Marketing award for The Secret Life of Five Year Olds On Holiday for Thomas Cook.

Charles Reid, group business director at Dentsu Aegis Network:


What was the goal of the campaign?

The traditional peaks period provided Thomas Cook with an opportunity to do something different and drive awareness of its Sunwing brand, which, in 2017, was still relatively new to UK holidaymakers.



Our research identified mums were the real holiday decision makers. We needed to address this head-on and demonstrate that Thomas Cook holidays are a time
to create family memories that will never be forgotten, with kids gaining confidence from new experiences.


How did you approach it?

We decided to take kids from C4’s Secret Life of... on holiday with Thomas Cook and film the outcomes. Mums would be shown the youngest, but perhaps the most honest, set of customers putting holidays to the test. It would be a groundbreaking All4 originals project built around six mini episodes, with additions for us on social media and Thomas Cook Airlines’ inflight entertainment.


Channel 4 then commissioned a 30-minute version for broadcast in the middle of our key Christmas trading period, recommissioning it as an hour-long special last Christmas.


What were the results?

The programme was watched by more than two million viewers – the most-watched show on that day for the housewives with children sector, 58% up on its slot. On the evening of the broadcast, we were trending at number four on Twitter. Our clips have more than four million organic views on Facebook. Importantly, Thomas Cook saw an increase in interest for its Sunwing resorts from UK customers.

Reid's tips for keeping marketing creative and innovative

1. Encourage risk. Anything is possible. While some ideas may fall away, the process often leads to even more exciting opportunities.
2. Be agile. Ensure you can roll with the punches and make the most of opportunities.
3. Collaborate. You may have a great idea; however, you’ll always need the support of others to best realise it.
4. Be authentic. Who do you want to engage, and what matters to them? Marketers talk about disruption a lot. Disruption is fine if you want to get noticed but how do you engage? Use all data points available to make the best- informed decision.
5. Commit. Few ground- breaking ideas are easy. You may need to create a team to activate it, ensuring there’s enough resource. There’s no point in a great idea that has no ability to thrive.

Communicate effectively

Tui won the Brand of the Year award.
Katie McAlister, chief marketing officer at Tui UK:


What inspired Tui’s rebrand?
It was about transforming us from the UK’s number one to a global travel brand able to offer more choice – of destination, hotel, cruise ship, flights and holiday duration. It brought together the best of Tui’s expertise from across the globe with all the quality, trust and value you’d expect from a loved holiday company with 60 years of heritage in the UK travel industry.


How was the idea rolled out?
It was gradual, as we needed to take people on the journey with us. We adopted the famous Tui smile well in advance so people would become accustomed to it when we transitioned; we created a communications plan building up to the rebrand and official name change so everyone knew it was coming; and we instigated a high impact rebrand plan that reached 96% of the UK adult population.


What were the challenges?
Protecting the huge SEO equity from the Thomson brand and re-branding 600 retail stores.


How did you overcome it?
With a clear and focused SEO strategy that protected fall-off and re-branding 30 stores per night over a four-week period.


How successful was the rebrand?
It did exactly what it was intended to. Unaided awareness of the Tui name in September 2017 was 4% and our aim was to get to around 40% by April 2018. We’ve hit that target – consideration of Tui is now greater than for Thomson before the rebrand, and customer retention has been strong.


How important is it to innovate as a brand?
It’s critical. Digitalisation has transformed the way people shop and the way brands talk to their customers. Brands need to continue to innovate and evolve to stay relevant.

Strategy is key

Dec BBDO with Find Me and Get Lost for Promotur – Turismo de Canarias won the Digital Marketing Campaign award.
Dec BBDO’s creative director Aina Cortina:


What inspired the idea?
We wanted to show the nature of the Canary Islands in a totally different way, and looked at how On set at Find Me and Get Lost we could merge different artistic disciplines with nature. We opted for body art, and discovered the work of Leonie Gene. Then we looked for a photographer with a special sensitivity for nature – the Instagrammer @kpunkka.


What was the video’s success?
The campaign reached 10 international markets on social media. It achieved 6.8 million views, 6.9% engagement on Instagram (34.5 times higher than the average) and 27.4 million impressions.


What makes a standout digital marketing idea?
Creativity, with an intelligent strategy to reach the target accurately.

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