I don’t get it. Why do so many destinations build specific websites for specific campaigns? Are they seriously thinking that consumers are only interested in the content specific to the campaigns theme? Let me give an example. Queensland has a campaign called Outback Holidays. It has a campaign website with a unique URL; adventureoutback.com.au. It has a lot of content about the Outback. This Dinosaur Trails information is really cool, for example.
Queensland also has it’s regular consumer website, queenslandholidays.com.au. It’s a great website with a lot of great information. But is doesn’t have the nice Dinosaur page I found on the campaign site. But it DOES lists all kinds of tourism operators including Lark Quarry Dinosaur Trackways, also very cool. This information didn’t make it on the campaign website though.
There is a link buried somewhere on the campaign website to the main website, but good luck finding it. I’m picking on Queensland because I happen to know their website well, but it happens everywhere and I-don’t-get-it. My assumption is that there is some co-op marketing deal where partners who buy in are featured exclusively on the campaign site. There’s probably also an agency involved who produces content exclusively for the campaign site.
Imagine Amazon building a campaign website to promote the new Harry Potter book without any references to its main website or other products. And you can only buy the book on the campaign site, and the campaign site is completely disconnected from the main Amazon website. It would never happen because it doesn’t make any sense.
I’m sure there are a lot of things we can do better on our website (and I’d love to hear it), but when it comes to campaigns, I think we’ve figured it out. Campaigns motivate a consumer to start learning about or planning a trip to British Columbia. There might be a campaign landing page to follow through on a specific call to action, but after that, we put the consumer at the best place of the website to start planning their trip. And what do we see? Somebody that responded to a golf message could be looking at our ski pages next, or at a spa operator, or whatever else is relevant and of interest to that consumer. Just because the consumer responded to a golf message, doesn’t mean she’s not interested in anything else. Limiting information based what motivated the consumer to visit is a missed opportunity.
I’m having an interesting Facebook wall-to-wall debate with my friend Liddie about mass marketing. I’m going to post my latest rant here for everybody to enjoy. Feel free to join in.
Mass advertising is like flinging things at a wall and hoping something will stick. That makes it too often an annoying, intrusive, obnoxious, irrelevant, unwanted waste of my time (with the exception of the mini-wheats commercial, they should make a show out of that).
Consumers go through every means to block, skip or ignore commercials. If I’m not looking for dish washing soap, I don’t want to hear about it. Companies should focus on creating great products instead of trying to sell crap with interruption marketing. People will tell each other about great products, that’s how you generate awareness.
Look at the fasted growing brand in the world: Google. Never ran any mass advertising campaign. Second fasted growing brand: Zara. Also no on mass. Fifth fasted growing brand: Starbucks, virtually no mass. Third and fourth fasted growing brands: Apple and Nintendo. They do run mass but that’s not the reason for their success; iPod and Wii are word-of-mouth phenomenas and so are Google, Zara and Starbucks.
Tourism British Columbia is looking for an online ski video host.
We have an exciting opportunity for a competent skier who is also dynamic on camera to host a series of mini documentary-style videos of three BC ski hills. The videos will appear online within a specific page on Tourism BC’s www.HelloBC.com site and potentially on other sites.
The role of the video host includes travelling with a videographer to three pre-selected BC mountains for between two and three days each, to ski while sharing information about choice runs and après ski activities with an online audience. They will also encourage consumers to submit their own photos or video footage. The host will be
sharing their ski hill experiences with a targeted online audience of 35 – 55 year olds who are affluent and enjoy skiing as a couple, with friends and/or with their children.
The host should be able to naturally adlib, while at the same time, include factual information about BC and each ski mountain, within their monologues. Mandatory key facts and information will be provided ahead of time to the video host. The host should have a passion for BC and enjoy sharing travel experiences with friends and family. In addition, the host must be a strong skier and will be required to ski on the video. Timeline & Compensation Travel dates are set between November 15th and December 19th 2007 and may fall on weekdays and/or weekends. In addition one video will be filmed inside locally prior to the travel dates. Compensation will be in the form of a project fee plus transportation, accommodation and per diems included.
Please submit, by email to kristine.potter at cossette.com, a 1-2 minute maximum video showing why you should be chosen as the 2007/08 Tourism BC Online Ski Host along with cover letter and resume. Please include “ski host audition tape” in your email subject line.
All submissions must be received no later than 12:00 noon, Friday, October 19, 2007.
It’s simple. Just set-up an RSS feed in Technorati for the search results of your product or brand and join the conversation where appropriate. I’ve seen plenty of examples where even CEO’s are monitoring blogs and posting comments.
My prediction is that all big travel brands will have a dedicated Social Network PR person on staff soon. But when you join the conversation, do in a transparent way, or you’ll end up being called on it just like Beatrice from Mobissimo.