When I’m planning a trip, I skim guidebooks, brochures and websites for information on a possible destination. But I also go to a very valuable source – someone who has already been there.
A person who has visited the place I have in mind often can offer very helpful and honest information. They can give me a first-person account of their experience.
So a new national advertising program now being inaugurated by Carnival Cruise Lines is very interesting to me. Called “Moments That Matter,” the campaign features unforgettable and memorable vacation moments experienced every day by the cruise line’s millions of guests.
Those experiences are captured through the camera lenses of guest passengers. The campaign includes thousands of real vacation photos and videos from past Carnival cruisers, collected through social media.
“For more than 41 years, Carnival has been creating the backdrop for lasting vacation memories for more than 60 million guests and we know there is no one more qualified than them to tell the authentic story of what a Carnival cruise is really like,” said Jim Berra, chief marketing officer for Carnival Cruise Lines.
“This campaign features real guests of all backgrounds and ages having fun and making great memories together.”
The campaign is part of a fall marketing push by Carnival Cruise Lines to stimulate consumer interest in the brand. More than $25 million in total will be invested across broadcast, radio, digital and direct mail between September and December 2013, and, while that does not represent the brand’s total annual advertising spend, it is substantially higher than what the company normally invests during the fall time period.
“We found those looking to book a cruise are much more likely to listen to recommendations from previous cruisers,” said Pete Johnson, executive creative director of Arnold Worldwide, which developed the campaign in partnership with Carnival.
“There’s a level of trust there that can’t be fabricated,” Johnson said. “That’s one of the reasons we decided to showcase meaningful moments experienced by past guests. It’s a way to create a real representation of the memories that can be made while cruising with Carnival.”
When Carnival put out the call, past guests submitted more than 30,000 pieces of “cruiser-generated content,” ranging from small moments like lounging poolside to larger-than-life moments like marriage proposals. Each piece reflected people’s most treasured vacation memories.
The new TV spots will debut on Monday, September 23, 2013, and will air on major primetime network shows including, How I Met Your Mother, Parks and Recreation, Big Bang Theory and The Voice, leading cable networks including Bravo, TNT, TLC, ABC Family, TBS and Food Network and online on Yahoo! and YouTube.
The new campaign will continue during the first quarter of 2014, a critical reservations period for the cruise industry known as “wave season.” Within the call-to-action at the end of the spot, consumers are encouraged to contact their travel professional, part of the cruise line’s ongoing effort to drive more traffic to its travel agent partners.
Carnival Cruise Lines has 24 ships operating three- to 16-day voyages to The Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, New England, Europe, Panama Canal, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, Norway, the Baltic and the British Isles. The company’s 25th ship, the 135,000-ton Carnival Vista, is scheduled to enter service in 2016.