Off the back of helping Tourism Australia launch one of its biggest weeks of domestic marketing ever, Powered by Nine’s head of creative solutions, Caitlyn Brukarz-Smith, explains how dynamic media mix, trust, and an agile team sits at the heart of the most impactful media partnerships.
While the idea of a media partnership has been around for a long time, it quite often still requires the planets to align on strategy, targets and message to ensure a meaningful outcome is delivered. This is a process that can frequently involve multiple rounds of briefs, and meetings between multiple stakeholders spanning media owner, media agency, creative agency and client to get us to the finish line.
But when the planets do align, which they did in the case of Tourism Australia’s “Travel Takeover Week campaign”, you realise success doesn’t necessarily need the long-winded time investment we have all come to believe big campaigns take. It just needs a lot of trust from all parties involved, and it helps when you work with a partner who can bring all the key media assets together under one roof.
Time was never going to be a luxury when it came to responding to Tourism Australia’s brief. Based on the changing tourism landscape, we had to think fast and smart in the way we responded.
The brief came after what could only be described as one of the hardest years in tourism history, scarred by devastating bushfires and the global COVID-19 pandemic.
The client came to us just before a holiday period which was characterised by concerns about a new wave of COVID-19 strain, state border closures, and incessant hotspot lockdowns that continued to cast a cloud over not just international travel but also domestic travel.
Our challenge was to help boost confidence in domestic tourism and encourage Australians to make travel plans by showcasing the opportunity to holiday here this year.
Our response needed to speak to all Australians – whatever position they were in, whether that was ideating, planning or booking their next vacation. The campaign didn’t just need to inspire and encourage Australians to dream. Crucially it had to make them act and book a trip.
Tapping into Nine’s 9Nation consumer insight panels that aggregate feedback from our TV viewers, publishing readers and the conversations we have with our trusty radio listeners, our creative proposition was derived: we needed to draw upon the ideology that Australians have never felt so lucky to live where we do.
The rest of the world recognises us as a country living the dream, with a beautiful, vast and safe landscape surrounding us. Our opportunity was to encourage Australians to live that dream and book a holiday here this year. After all, we are the envy of the world and could all use a break.
A harmonious approach to creativity
This feeling was brought to life by a series of creative, cross-platform executions using trusted on-air talent as a call to arms. Each execution was created with the channel and its audience in mind.
An emotive commercial featuring trusted and much-loved talent ran in key prime-time programs on the 9Network and across 9Now. The “community service” style spots provoked a sense of Australian pride, and presented an authentic and emotive personalised story, delivering the “travel here” message with impact.
The TV campaign was complimented by an emotive radio schedule featuring local Nine radio presenters to ensure relevance across the country. One of our greatest strengths with radio is its ability to converse and connect in real time. So we also committed to asking on-air guests and contributors the important question: “We’re living the dream in Australia right now. If you could pick anywhere to travel domestically where would it be?”
"We’re living the dream in Australia right now. If you could pick anywhere to travel domestically where would it be?”
We implemented solus billboards and cleverly crafted messaging via pull-throughs across relevant, high-rating broadcast programming to ensure we didn’t just inspire, we aided consideration.
We used the storytelling power of print to launch an unmissable and informative four-page branded content wrap of The Sun-Herald. A blank map of Australia on the cover garnered eyeballs in cafés and homes across Sydney, encouraging readers to build their own travel itinerary. The double-page spread that followed included different ways to experience Australia, and featured QR codes to help the reader’s journey.
High-impact digital media across nine.com.au and publishing websites complemented native content from Nine’s travel experts, exploring different domestic themes and destinations.
All in all, from brief to execution, the campaign was turned around in less than four weeks, featuring multiple iterations of campaign creative running across Nine’s television, digital, print and radio assets.
It’s still early days for hard success metrics from one of Australia’s biggest domestic tourism pushes, but one thing already clear is that time is no longer the barrier for big creative thinking –you just need to invest in a partnership you can trust, and one that offers the right media assets to deliver success.
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