Generating a New Generation of Visitors

2018

When it comes to tourism, the world is your oyster. There are 195 countries out there and you can go anywhere, see anything and experience everything. 

This campaign had a very specific target audience... Millennials, and a simple objective of increasing positive 'Scotland' brand perceptions among the 20 - 35 year old audience.

UK
w 5,647 People entered the competition A massive 5,647 people entered the competition – 70% higher that E4’s benchmark target.

THE CHALLENGE

When it comes to tourism, the world is your oyster. There are 195 countries out there and you can go  anywhere, see anything and experience everything.

How do you put Scotland at the top of the list? That was only half the challenge. The other was targeting Millennials.

A generation 23% more likely to travel abroad than their older counterparts, as well as one that seeks inspiration in a very different way. They are looking for powerfully connecting, authentic experiences and therefore turn to more credible and trustworthy influencers. We needed to showcase Scotland as a progressive, liberal and exciting destination.  A place that would deliver the experiences they were looking for – authentic connections in a world that is being driven by material matters.

Research insights emphasised that Scotland was a travel destination already on the millenial’s consideration list, but the challenge was encouraging them to escalate Scotland as a place to visit now. We needed to add a sense of immediacy and interactivity to our communications. We needed a campaign that would make them feel as if they were already there

THE STRATEGY

When it comes to tourism, the world is your oyster. There are 195 countries out there and you can go anywhere, see anything and experience everything.

Our strategy was to put real and live participation at the very heart of VisitScotland marketing. We knew from previous research that Scotland’s appeal is best told through storytelling. We needed to convey a genuine mix of warmth, welcome, sense of fun and camaraderie. So, it was fitting that such a diverse range of companies worked together to create this unique experience. This was a true collaboration not only between Dentsu Aegis Network brands such as Carat and The Story Lab – but also with the client, media owner and production company

We weren’t simply marketing a country, we aimed to inspire a national movement by delivering innovative content through an insight-led approach. We wanted to drive real-time conversations with millennials and target audience influencers, whilst staying relevant and on-brand.

Media partnerships formed a core strand of this strategy, allowing us to ‘rent’ the relationship media channels have with their audiences. When seeking to speak authentically to an audience, partnerships give you credibility. We briefed prospective partners and held competitive pitches to find the best fit with our strategic vision. Ultimately, we partnered with E4, based on the target audience and the strength of the idea.

The entertainment destination for a cutting-edge young audience. Its eccentric and witty persona and strong branding get people talking.

The Idea being to fill a campervan with 6 real life millennials, who take part in the opportunity of a lifetime and visit all the unique experiences Scotland has to offer.

Extensive planning was implemented behind-the-scenes with The Story Lab, Carat and E4, combining the collective wealth of experience to ensure this memorable multi-platform content was created smoothly.

To reach this audience we knew we had to do something ‘real’, driven by technology, social media and personalization.

We wanted to put control of the campaign back into the hands of the audience – to showcase the unexpected beauty of Scotland through a new generation’s eyes and make the experiences feel real with a live, impulsive element.

The ‘Tribes’ research also informed us that millennials responded more positively and engaged with content that had high production values. So, we chose to work with Oscar-nominated production company The Chase Films and award-winning directors Cagoule. However, a movie is nothing without a cast and location, so six millennials were recruited through a casting spot on E4 and invited to travel across Scotland in a camper van.

GENERATING A NEW GENERATION OF VISITORS

And this is where it got interesting. In a UK-first we gave E4 viewers complete control over a week on air, inviting them to choose the locations of the ads across the week using Twitter; which offered viewers the opportunity to vote for the next day’s activity through #ScotE4.

The Twitter poll, supported by E4 social channels, was live for 30 minutes after the ad. Once votes were counted, cast and crew moved to the winning location, ready to film the following day’s spot. Five commercials in 19 locations were shot and edited in just six days. Driving 868 miles around Scotland. On 11th September the E4 voiceover launched the interactive TV campaign with a Channel 4 branded break.

To ensure creative continuity the 60” spots were broadcast at the same time from Monday to Friday in Celebs Go Dating. This ‘live’ element and interactivity brought real innovation, immediacy and excitement to the shoot and campaign. We put millennials in the driving seat.

THE RESULTS

We placed Scotland on the map for millennials.

The interactive element of this campaign struck a chord with our target market who live for real experiences. A massive 5,647 people entered the competition – 70% higher that E4’s benchmark target. And in the five days we were live on TV we received 3,529 engagements on the hashtag.

VisitScotland tasked us with driving data capture with this audience, allowing them to keep up the conversation with an audience growing in importance – we delivered 2.8k in database additions. Post campaign research showed that 3 out of 4 of those who recalled the ads deemed them informative, exciting, entertaining and inspiring so we knew the campaign had cut through.

However, the key objective of the campaign was to drive consideration to visit with millennials. Research showed that Scotland moved from 4th to 1st on a list of competitor destinations with those who had seen the campaign. With a generation that traditionally puts off a visit to Scotland until their later years we moved Scotland to the top of their must-visit list. We were on top of the world

w 5,647 People entered the competition A massive 5,647 people entered the competition – 70% higher that E4’s benchmark target.
& 3,529 Engagements And in the five days we were live on TV we received 3,529 engagements on the hashtag.
E 1st Number 1 in Competitor Destination Research showed that Scotland moved from 4th to 1st on a list of competitor destinations with those who had seen the campaign.
O 2.8K Database Additions VisitScotland tasked us with driving data capture with this audience, allowing them to keep up the conversation with an audience growing in importance – we delivered 2.8k in database additions.

The E4 Partnership was ground breaking for VisitScotland. It was the right communication, delivered in a bold, innovative and campaignable way. It delivered brilliantly on the objective of changing the way young people feel about holidaying in Scotland. The project was not without its risks, but based on the results and the content it delivered, it was certainly a risk worth taking. What I am really delighted about is the way VisitScotland, Carat, StoryLab and Channel 4 worked in true collaboration as one team to deliver this trail blazing partnership.

Charlie Smith Director of Marketing & Digital, VisitScotland
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