How Cox & Kings’ #ForeverYoung re-positioned Thailand as a women-friendly destination & generated leads for its women-only tours

Case study by Cox & Kings and Xebec on the launch of its women-only tours under the categories: 'Influencer marketing',' B2C Brand Building', 'Offline-Online Integrated' for LI Digital Awards 2017

Cox-Kings-ForeverYoung

The Client

Cox & Kings Ltd., set up in 1758, is one of the longest established travel companies. Headquartered in India, the holiday and education travel group has subsidiaries in the US, Canada, the UK, Netherlands, the UAE, Japan, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. Cox & Kings Ltd. has operations spread across 22 countries and 4 continents. Historically, Cox & Kings Ltd. has been an army agent, a travel agent, a printer and publisher. Its core activities now include the sale of packaged holidays for leisure travel.

The Agency

Xebec is one of the leading integrated marketing agencies of India. We develop and employ the best digital marketing strategies and creative technology solutions. With offices all over the country, our reach is far and wide, as are the categories our work has spanned. We enjoy working with clients who broaden our scope and deepen our insight and practice of the business of brands that truly engage. Just like a Xebec which is a three-sail ship that moves fast ahead of the rest, we aim to partner with you to make your brand a forerunner. Relevant to both sailing and advertising, our motto is ‘surf on’.

Problem Statement

The Thailand Tourism board had a problem. Overtime, Thailand has built a certain reputation. While it was driving in tourists, it was also alienating some sections – especially women travellers, in groups or solo. Preconceived notions about the destination deterred women travellers from indulging in certain experiences such as spa and wellness.

Thailand has an amazing array of Spa and wellness services, either standalone or as part of hotel establishments which are safe, luxurious and provide a top-notch experience. Yet, these were not fully utilized by women travellers, including those from India. Thailand desperately wanted to change perceptions, let women travellers know about all that it has to offer and above it all, pitch it as a safe destination for women to indulge their senses.

Identified Objectives

We identified key objectives that could later be measured to determine the success of the campaign:

  • Portray Thailand as a safe destination for women travellers
  • Create awareness about its spa and wellness offerings catering to women travellers
  • Create the right buzz amongst women looking to plan their travels abroad
  • Create a sustained buzz about the destination
  • Influencers to drive campaign thought
  • Generate Leads

The Strategy/ Execution

The Idea

The idea was very simple. It was born out of a confluence of insights, lifestyles and the need to  change. We combined travel dream destinations of women with their most engaging activity on social media to come up with a differentiating campaign and re-position Thailand as the perfect country for indulgence.

Confluence of insights

The campaign drew insights from our women-only social media campaign #TravelLikeAGoddess where women travellers named ‘Thailand’ as their preferred destination to go to ‘abroad’. However, women also mentioned that ‘safety’ was their top most priority.

Additionally, women indulged in fashion and beauty more than any other online category. Women spend their maximum time online, watching fashion and lifestyle videos, especially by bloggers. This gave rise to an interesting proposition.

What if we position Thailand, not like a destination, but like a beauty product.

The questions still remain the same – Is it safe to use? Is it expensive? Is it for me? Are other women using it too? So why not marry them both? What if we pitch Thailand as a beauty product? Sell it like a beauty product. Design it like a beauty product. Talk about it like a beauty product. And what do beauty products aim to do? Keep you looking and feeling forever young. Thus was born our #ForeverYoung campaign.

The Launch

So how do we launch the latest beauty product in the market? We give it to beauty and fashion bloggers of course! We engaged 6 of India’s top fashion bloggers to try out the latest beauty product in the market. These bloggers were chosen basis their influence and their popularity. Some, popular within beauty blogger segments, some hugely popular on Instagram, some rocking Twitter and Facebook. Each, with their blog of their own, their own readership, their own network of followers.

These 6 bloggers, set out on a month long excursion to Thailand, one after the other, trying out the various aspect of the ‘latest beauty product’ in the market. Bloggers reported live from Thailand, they tweeted, instagrammed, blogged about their experience and how this latest crazy will truly help women look forever young!

Microsite

The product itself was launched like a beauty product. It had its own microsite which spoke about the various benefits the product had to offer to women, the various beauty regimes that women could follow and be on the path to being forever young.

cox&kings foreveryoung miracle product

Our travel packages were integrated within the microsite as a beauty regime, various activities and spa visits were pitched as beauty spots in Thailand.

Social Media and Other digital platforms

Social media was abuzz, with beauty bloggers talking about the ‘latest’ beauty product in the market so as to create real pull towards the launch of ‘Thailand as a beauty product’. The bloggers set the tone, created the right premise for the campaign to flow as a ‘FMCG product launch’ rather than a travel product. We were able to keep Thailand on top of people’s minds through bloggers.

Cox&Kings ForeverYoung posts

Once the audiences realized that the beauty product was in fact a destination, we revealed our campaign on our own social networks and other digital platforms. Besides bloggers, we also promoted the latest beauty product across social media channels, display networks, content market push, YouTube and more.

The 360 degree campaign was to create the right buzz in the market in a bid to start changing perceptions and make Thailand more women-friendly.

The campaign ran for 3 months where we were able to get women to interact with the brand consistently, inquire about the latest beauty regimes and sign up for a beauty treatment package (aka travel package) to Thailand.

Results

  • The high-decibel campaign generated immense buzz for the brand.
  • The campaign helped generate leads for our women-only tours and also for Thailand throughout the campaign duration.
  • We garnered close to 210 million impressions across platforms.
  • Over 100,000 views on the blogger content, published on our microsite. Even more on their own blogs.
  • Worldwide trending achieved for the brand. This helped the tourism board since Thailand’s problem was worldwide and not just restricted to tourists from India.
  • Re-position Thailand as a women-friendly destination.

Observations

We observed that using real influencers, who are thought leaders in their respective category, can have a positive impact on the audience and help the brand achieve its objective.