lowcostholidays.com reaches new audiences and drives brand awareness with YouTube
This year lowcostholidays.com, a global online travel agent, wanted to drive awareness of their brand in new European markets. They turned to YouTube for innovative advertising options. ‘We wanted to reach our audience at a different stage of their research, particularly at the top funnel stage, and measure their engagement with our brand,’ explains Claire Goodenough, Marketing manager at lowcostholidays.com.
What did they do? They utilised two distinctive advertising options on YouTube: a bespoke TrueView ad and a Homepage Takeover.
TrueView ads are pre-roll videos that run on content across YouTube. As the ad starts, the user is presented with a choice of skipping or watching the ad and advertisers are only charged when a user chooses to watch. Consequently users who choose to watch are likely to be more engaged.
The 30-second video that lowcostholidays.com produced was designed specifically for TrueView, in order to take advantage of the features that the ad format offers. In the opening few seconds, the ad invited the viewer to participate in a quiz to win a voucher code applicable to a future holiday. Once ‘hooked’ the viewer was then presented with a range of enticing holiday photographs, and at the end could guess the destination of the photos to win the discount. Annotations appeared throughout the video to encourage users to complete the quiz. lowcostholidays.com tested various targeting options and ensured they were targeting a relevant audience.
In addition, lowcostholidays.com ran a Masthead Lite on YouTube’s homepage for 24 hours in Ireland, affording massive reach in a concentrated time period. The ad unit consisted of an image banner as well as a video. Careful scheduling helped lowcostholidays.com maximize results. ‘We were able to pick what we deemed the most relevant day in terms of YouTube visits within our market and how it was aligned with our usual visitor behavior calendar,’ Claire explains. ‘Taking over the YouTube homepage for one day allowed us the broadest YouTube reach possible.’
An astonishing 80% of the Masthead’s traffic was from new visitors. ‘This was our aim,’ explains Claire, ‘to get broader targeting and reach people who hadn’t heard of our brand before.’
The TrueView campaign also produced excellent outcomes. ‘Our initial objective was to drive brand awareness, which was achieved: our TrueView ad saw a much higher new visitor rate than we normally see,’ reports Claire. ‘Also, it was great that we achieved sales from TrueView at a CPA similar to some of our Search campaigns. Seeing conversions was certainly a bonus. The effort we put into targeting and making bespoke videos for TrueView paid off.’
lowcostholidays.com are extending their reach by testing engagement ads as well as Mobile Roadblocks. Claire adds, ‘after the success we’ve had with YouTube, it’s something we would definitely keep as a constant on our annual marketing plan’.
Article by Anna Tong, Industry Manager for Travel
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September 23, 2013