Lonely Planet Encourages Tourism With India Unexplored Campaign

Ever so once in a while you come across a brilliant campaign. This is one such initiative taken up by Lonely Planet and Sky Scanner. Enabling travelers to share their experiences and win prizes of many forms. These experiences could be places to shop, stalls to eat, places to visit or activities to try out!

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Objective

  • Inviting avid travelers to share their shopping, food, activity and sights on the destinations they are visiting to win exciting prizes.
  • Enabling users to vote for their favorite discovery through Facebook or Google+

This campaign is about inviting frequent travelers across our great country to share their travel experiences so that others can enjoy them too! This campaign is set to run from the 4th of October to the 17th of November, 2014 during which an array of prizes are up for grabs.

Execution

The idea behind this campaign is simple. When most people travel, they tend to explore new things that adds to the entire experience of having travelled. Whether this is a destination that has incredible food to savor, a new or different activity like adventure sports or even shopping locations in the destination. All these are usually shared by the traveler on social media in some form or the other. This campaign enables the traveler to also vote for their favourites and thereby enabling a winner to arise.

The campaign was initiated with teaser posts made before the launch of the campaign on social media mediums like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

Lonely Planet India even changed their cover image graphics to generate interest and raise curiosity among their fans and followers.

The approach on Twitter how ever was a lot more personal, with each individual fan or follower being tagged.

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The campaign also boasts of multiple micro-contests within the duration of the 6 week campaign on social media with prizes being given out individually!

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Positives

Well built micro-site

The carefully built site tries to convey that the brand guides its customers not only to the best but also to some off-beat travel destinations across India. The site has a typical Indian appeal to it. With Indian festivals & budget travel articles, the site is designed to cater to each festive mood & interesting activities Indians can do, by keeping it relevant.

Travel being a popular topic on social media

When travelling, people always look at clicking photos and record videos of the amazing experiences they have during the travel & stay. People on social media are even more eager to share what they did during the trip with friends, family & other enthusiasts. This campaign enables people to share the location of the activity, food, shopping or place so that others can visit it and enjoy it too.

A deep sense of gratification arises in the traveller to be able to contribute to someone else’s holiday too. Giving a traveller the opportunity to contribute to someone else’s holiday and experience makes them feel gratified. A gratified person is definitely going to talk about you. Great idea for brand promotion.

Building conversations for the brand

This campaign does not simply help people find places and things to do when on holiday but the unseen fact is that a lot of places that people enjoy during trips are the small ‘kiranaas’ and tapris for food and the little knick-knacks on street corners that are usually hard to find. By putting this on the map, these little shops will certainly have a lot more traffic and thereby encouraging tourism and business.

I think this is a great idea for a brand to build conversations around the campaign. A brilliant idea to encourage indirect tourism considering its always the smaller places that are more fun and have better stuff to eat or buy and there’s no one really to help promote them.

Brand Recall

With all said & done, this campaign by Lonely Planet strives to build a strong brand re-call. With the activities that the campaign demands, the online community is asked to share photos of the flavorsome food they’ve tried sometime on their trip or different activities like adventure sports or even shopping locations they have been too.

By involving each travel enthusiast in this activity, Lonely Planet tries to penetrate in the minds of the online community. So the next time the user explores something new on his / her journey, the thought of sharing it with Lonely Planet hits the mind.

Prizes are always important

What the campaign doesn’t mention on their site is details about the prizes to be won. During campaign, most brands motivate user and contestants with the prizes to be won. Although the mega prize promises a holiday for 2 to an offbeat destination, the special theme prize, early bird prize, shutterbug, move maker, and best trekking discovery prizes are just mentioned as ‘exciting’ prizes. That’s not very motivating. People always love to know what they could possibly win, even if its something small.

What’s more important is the fact that people know what they’re winning rather than being disappointed after they win.

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Conclusion

This initiative is certainly for the explorer in you, looking to find new places to visit and new things to do. A really great way to encourage travellers to be a part of this campaign launch and generate interest. The interest and curiosity this campaign will generate is probably a lot more than they may expect. Considering every 20-something in our country has taken up travelling as a hobby. Perhaps being more clear about the prizes to be won would make it a bit better but overall, a really great idea and campaign!

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