Tag: travel advertisingView All Tags
Long-time Jaunted readers are familiar with our rants about advertising flak who use douchey lines like "now you can travel without traveling" or "now you can see the world without ever leaving your home" or something equally horrible.
Traditionally the topic in question has been virtual reality technology: Google Maps and Google Street View and so on. The idea isn't horrible - it assumes that experiencing new places is important - but you can't really get those experiences from technology. We've had cause to express our irritation about any implication otherwise (see here and here and here for examples).
Turns out, we never knew how good we had it with the "virtual travel equals real travel" crowd. Those folks are veritable Edmund Hillarys compared to the PR geniuses who sent us a press release about the new Old Spice's new Fresher Scents collection.
Actual line: "guys can finally escape the urban jungle, and experience the calming effects nature smells have on the mind and body - without having to rub tree bark under their armpits."
Holy sh*t. Armchair travelers, meet Old Spice's Armpit Travelers.
It seems like everyone in travel advertising these days is trying to tug on heart strings. Expedia regularly makes ads about how travel can bring families and lovers together. Their late summer campaign even managed to rope in Throwback Thursday nostalgia. A little while ago the Enjoy Illinois campaign made an ad that was almost too cutesy, but had so much charm that Buzzfeed described it as "honestly, the best state tourism ad ever created." KLM's recent puppy Lost & Found ad made people melt. Even when attempts go spectacularly awry - as so famously happened with Sinagpore's grating couples ad - the intent is still there.
The one consistent exception has been Kayak, which does in a very technical sense produce ads that have to do with families, though not the way you'd think. But that company has a long history of posting videos produced by people who were seemingly tripping balls, so no one really counts them.
Expedia's been on a bit of a roll with sentimental travel advertising lately. Over the summer there was this one about how you can find your true love by vacationing abroad. The problem with that ad was the twist at the end. The first 90% of the video had the woman talking about how she went to Paris, found her true love, and lived a life filled with joy - and then she revealed none of that ever happened, because she never took that one big trip. Presumably her lack of travel caused her to wallow in loneliness until she died, unloved and unremembered. So while it undeniably emphasized the importance of traveling, it was also a bit of a downer.
This new Expedia ad runs exactly the opposite way. The first 90% of the video is about how awful travel can be and how it separates you from your family. You see the dad leaving over again, you see him video conferencing with his daughter from various hotel rooms, and then you see him coming back home with a stuffed animal. Every time, over and over again, a stuffed animal. Then the last very bit - when he uses his rewards points to do stuff - reverses everything in a good way.
Videos / Travel Ads / Travel Advertising / Expedia / Google / Paris Travel / France Travel / → All Tags
A few years ago Google published an ad about finding love in Paris, which ended with a guy...well, finding love in Paris. The purpose of the spot was to highlight all of the different things you can find by using the search engine (information, flights, locations) and it was widely acknowledged as a successful bit of advertising that left everybody with a nice, pleasant feeling.
This new video that just came out from Expedia Mexico is the opposite of that. We're not saying that it doesn't workit definitely makes us want to travel to France, as France-themed travel advertising ought to dobut it's not exactly designed to generate warm fuzzies. Crushing regret is closer to what this commercial seems to be aiming for.
Travel Advertising / Singapore Travel / Singapore / Tourism / Tourism Boards / Bad Ideas / → All Tags
This is being described as the "most embarrassing tourism ad ever," and also as "so bad it will go viral," and also as "cringe-worthy," and also as a bunch of other similar things. We've watched it - once, and only once - and those are all fair descriptions. It might literally be the worst bit of travel advertising we've ever seen. It's so bad that it goes around to being good, but then it comes back around to being bad, and then it gets stuck at bad. It's painful to watch.
The source of this travesty is the Singapore tourism board, and the backlash they faced was very immediately and very public. In what might be described as an understated public climb-down, the board admitted that the video "was not resonating well with audiences" and that "some aspects of it could have been done better." So of course they took it down, and of course you can find one of its many online copies embedded below.
Airports / Travel Advertising / Travel Politics / TSA / Airport Safety / Airline Safety / → All Tags
To the 3 of you who obsessively follow our travel politics posts: apologies, but content is going to become increasingly sparse as we enter the silly season of an off-cycle election. We just can't take it. We're not sure what exact second we snapped, but the story responsible was this "TSA unions support armed guards" nonsense. We've already written extensively about the dishonest bait-and-switch that was used to install TSA unions. We've already written extensively about how TSA tries to protect ill-thought policies with hastily-thrown together band-aids. We've already written extensively about how politicians grandstand against TSA but won't give the agency the resources to do things right.
The convergence of those topics kind of short-circuited our brains. You probably don't want to read about the internal politics of labor plus safety plus electoral considerations. We certainly have no desire to write those posts. It's a shame because the story is actually really important both as a substantive matter and as an illustration of how the way we talk about aiport security is broken. And yet.
Instead, how about a video where someone tries to sell you chocolate by dancing through various parts of an airport?
Denmark is objectively an awesome place to live. The United Nations has officially declared that it's literally the happiest country on Earth. It has a strong economy, a robust social safety net, and people who are on the whole gorgeous (don't forget that last part, because it's about to become important).
There's only one problem, apparently. Not enough of those gorgeous people are making new gorgeous people. We presume there's lots of sex going on - how could there not be - but it's not productive sex, in the traditional sense. The country is actually facing the possibility of a demographic collapse, in the sense that it's becoming a real national problem that serious people discuss.
The folks at Danish travel company Spies Rejser think they've got an idea for reversing the decline. The video, which opens with the question "can sex save Denmark?," describes a campaign that Spies is calling "Do It For Denmark!"
Kayak's newest 30 second spot is designed to highlight how it's much faster to search the aggregator site than to search multiple individual sites. This message in no way distinguishes the new ad from any other Kayak ad. The joke in the commercial is kind of wacky and surreal and designed to make minimal sense. These characteristics, again, are hallmark of Kayak's travel advertising.
So naturally people are outraged because, if you kind of tilt your head sideways and squint, you can take the video seriously and then it becomes a knock on old people who have trouble climbing up stairs. We'll spare you our usual "when did this happen; when did we collectively become such annoying whiny obnoxious little babies" rant, and instead go right into describing the video. We've also embedded it below if you want to take a look yourself.
We're going to describe this contest in as straightforward and nonjudgmental a way as we can. Then we'll leave it up to you guys to decide whether it's a piece of clever travel advertising or whether it's... something else. There are certainly some arguments in favor of the notion that it's clever travel advertising, most obviously the facts that we're writing about the competition and you're about to read about it. But then on the other side of the argument is... just about everything else.
DDB Stockholm - which has been described among other things as the "world's most interactive agency" - seems to have been contracted by Lufthansa to promote the airline in Sweden. The agency creatives put their collective heads together and came up with a winner-take-all contest for Swedes of both sexes. Whoever gets past the finish line first gets a trip to Germany, an apartment in Berlin, transportation in the form of a bicycle, and - quote unquote - "a new life courtesy of Lufthansa."
To win, all one has to do is legally change their name to Klaus-Heidi, and then to prove it somehow. So if someone uploads a passport with a legal name of Klaus-Heidi on it, they win.
How about something light for a dreary Friday afternoon. Buzzfeed's headline described it as "honestly, the best state tourism ad ever created." It's not the most magical piece of travel advertising we've ever seen - the winner of that particular prize is probably this Widerøe ad - but it's certainly very well done.
And frankly, given the usual stupidity that revolves around state promotions, this ad deserves some kind of medal.
Spirit Airlines / Travel Advertising / Mexico Travel / Travel News / Anthony Weiner / Airline News / → All Tags
Spirit Airlines recently posted an ad about the ongoing fiasco that is the Anthony Weiner New York mayoral campaign. They did this, first, because they're tactless tasteless douchebags and, second, because they're tactless tasteless douchebags.
Just to be clear. We don't object to the Internet's inherent and inalienable right to make fun of Weiner or his campaign. Gawking at political trainwrecks is why Al Gore invented the Internet in the first place (that's a fact; you can look it up). And it's not like this is even the most tasteless Spirit ad specifically about marital infidelity. This one was probably worse.
Holland Travel / Holland / Amsterdam Travel / Amsterdam / AMS / Travel Advertising / Tourism Boards / → All Tags
The tourism board responsible for getting you to spend your money on Holland travel undoubtedly has a lot of options. There's food, and shopping, and music, and fashion, and culture, and sex, and drugs, and sex, and sex. In an era where all targeting is micro-targeting, how's anyone responsible for travel advertising supposed to drill down into just one topic?
The answer is you don't. As New York's Mustache Agency realized - while working with a host of Dutch institutions familiar to Jaunted readers, including KLM and the Amsterdam Airport - is that you take a bunch of them and wrap them up into one complete package. Thus did the agency arrive at one of the most basic but effective messages in the history of advertising: Holland is cool, and if you go to Holland, you'll be cool too.