Destination Canada, inspiring millions with YouTube

Destination Canada, inspiring millions with YouTube

Goals

  • Inspire German travellers to make their next holiday adventure a Canadian one
  • Tell an engaging story about Canada as a destination

Approach

  • Launched an emotive YouTube campaign with YouTube creators sharing their Canadian holiday adventures
  • Integrated YouTube traffic data into DoubleClick Bid Manager so Destination Canada could remarket to viewers using TrueView

Results

  • YouTube creator videos achieved over 17 million views
  • Canada experienced an 11% increase in German visitors in the first half of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015
  • Destination Canada used the campaign’s approach to target other markets
  • The campaign won two M&M Global Awards for Smart Use of Data and Best International Growth Strategy

Destination Canada asked its agency OMD International to change the mindset of German travellers from “Canada someday” to “Canada today.” An emotive YouTube campaign achieved over 17 million views and Canada saw an 11% increase in German holiday makers in the first half of 2016. The campaign was based on four YouTube creators’ Canadian adventures, using DoubleClick Bid Manager to ensure cross-device reach.

Getting to the top of the wish list

Canada’s national tourism marketers, Destination Canada, had long targeted adventure-loving German travellers. When research revealed a slowdown in bookings to Canada, despite it being high on many Germans’ holiday wish lists, they decided to inspire their audience.

YouTube captured the spirit of adventure

“It’s an expensive media market, and we were having trouble breaking through,” explains Destination Canada Executive Director of Global Marketing, Gloria Loree. "Canada has a great story to tell, and we knew we needed a new way to tell it."

In 2015, Destination Canada decided to launch a new kind of campaign based on the experiences of four well-known German YouTube creators and invited them to visit Canada, experience its immense beauty and culture, and share videos of their adventures on YouTube.

These videos were then hosted on YouTube with their creators sharing them, giving German viewers a rich visual experience to help them imagine their own Canadian adventures.

Viewings were good, but bookings were even better

Destination Canada used DoubleClick Bid Manager to help target interested travellers as they planned their next adventure.

OMD used traffic data to compile lists of people who’d viewed the creators' YouTube channels. They then integrated this data into the DoubleClick Bid Manager suite. This allowed Destination Canada to effectively remarket to the viewers using TrueView.

If a viewer had seen a YouTube creator’s video of British Columbia, Destination Canada would send that viewer a relevant British Columbia travel package via online display ads.

"Using data from Google products like DoubleClick Bid Manager allowed us to reach consumers with the right message at the right place and the right time," explains OMD International Digital Account Director, Brooke Steinberg. "We wanted to make sure we were sharing this amazing content and then sequencing it in the right way. Google helped us do that seamlessly."

With over 17 million views of YouTube creator videos, the campaign has exceeded all expectations, and still generates thousands of views each month even after the paid ads ended.

"Using data from Google products like DoubleClick Bid Manager allowed us to reach consumers with the right message at the right place and the right time." OMD International Digital Account Director, Brooke Steinberg