As difficult as it is to creative advertising that stands out in the crowded marketplace, that can sometimes feel like the easy part. When it comes time to prove the value of marketing campaigns, it can be difficult to figure out exactly what to measure. - See more at: http://www.mercurycsc.com/blog/2013/10/24/measuring-roi-integrated-media-campaigns/
Welcome to our webinar— Advertising Effectiveness and Measuring ROI, featuring Montana “There’s Nothing Here.”
Our contact information is on this slide– feel free to get in touch and we will be happy to address any questions or comments.
And a little background on myself, I work in the consumer research department designing both custom and syndicated research for clients across the industries we serve…we offer a full range of consumer research, both qualitative and quantitative on a broad range of topics including brand equity, conjoint/choice modeling, market sizing, ad awareness, concept/ad testing and what we’re here to discuss today: ROI measurement!1 This is me taking a break from analyzing research to enjoy riding and camping in the mountains.
Leisure Trends Group is a full service market research company and market expert on leisure time, fitness, travel and recreation. Leisure Trends Group tracks retail sales across the major recreation industries and offers customer relationship management.
Hello everyone - We are based in Bozeman, Montana and have 20 people on staff.I like to say that all of us have been around the block a lot more than once or twice. Or… as they say in Montana, this is not our first rodeo.
Our focus is connecting brands to people who value travel, outdoors and community. We also call them the Geotraveler. I'll spend more time later today talking specifically about this target audience. We take a holistic, brand-first approach to working with our clients – who are primarily in the travel and outdoor industries. The work we do starts with insights so that we can then better communicate with our clients' target audiences – and achieve their marketing objectives and outperform industry benchmarks.
We are going to talk today about three things. 1. why it's imperative to truly understand your target audience through qualitative research – and 2. by understanding that target audience you then have the insights to develop award-winning creative. But – finally – the third thing we are going to discuss is that having award-winning creative is only going to get you so far if you can't measure it for its effectiveness. All of these pieces must work together.
The case study that we will speak to takes a look at the work we've done with the Montana Office of Tourism and when MercuryCSC first began working with Leisure Trends Group. If you're like me when I'm listening to a webinar, you may have already started to check your email by now. Be sure to click back to the webinar screen now because I want to show you some pretty fantastic imagery.The Montana Office of Tourism is responsible for building awareness of Montana and all that it has to offer. A few years ago,MercuryCSC worked with the Office of Tourism as it was undertaking a brand discovery process. The Office of Tourism was charged by the Governor at the time to come up with a cohesive Montana brand that everyone in the state's tourism industry could get behind and support – whether they were in the eastern part or the western part of the state. Through the brand discovery process, we defined three key components of the Montana brand.
First – Montana offers more spectacular, unspoiled nature than anywhere else in the lower 48. (My apologies to those of who may disagree and live in other beautiful parts of the U.S…)(This is what inspires people to come to Montana.)
Second – Montana's vibrant and charming small towns serve as gateways to its natural wonders.(And this gives people a sense that there are places to go – but that these towns aren't necessarily destinations in of themselves – they may just be starting points to adventures.)
And third – Montana offers breathtaking experiences by day and relaxing hospitality at night. (This gives them an idea of what they could experience in Montana.)Depending on the marketing tactic, all three of these were key components in telling the Montana story and attracting more visitors to Montana.
As we began planning with the Montana Office of Tourism for its 2010 marketing campaign:The travel industry outlook for the nation was not super promising – the demand for lodging and travel was down;
For Montana specifically, 2009 visitation levels were down and the percentage of hotel rooms sold had decreased in 2009.Based on previous research studies, we had a pretty good idea that awareness of Montana as destination was pretty low but we didn't know current awareness levels. But we did know that Montana didn't have the spending power of many other state tourism offices so we needed to be hyper-focused.What we recommend to our clients is that in order for them to be hyper-focused, then they must thoroughly and truly understand their target audience.
Years back, National Geographic and the U.S. Travel Association conducted an extensive study and through this study defined people who visit destinations that have… as Geotravelers. During the Montana brand discovery process, Geotravelers were identified as a likely audience who would be most interested in Montana for what Montana is. But the only information that existed about the Geotraveler was quantitative data that told us that, sure, they visited these types of places, but the research didn't tell us why. We wanted to know what inspired them, what was important in their lives, and ultimately how to best engage them. We believed that if we conducted qualitative research – and really got to know these people through one-on-one conversations and online discussion forums – then we would walk away with key insights that would allow us be hyper-focused and help solve the state's challenges of decreasing visitation.
I could spend the next hour talking about what we have learned about this target audience through our Geotraveler Research Panel, so I'll keep it to a top-line overview of some their key attributes. They want to localize as much as possible. They are interested in real places, real people and real experiences. They focus their spending on selective consumption of meaningful goods that provide them a high degree of utility, saves them time and gives them knowledge or expertise. And they desire to live on a healthy planet.
But at the end of the day, the most important aspect about this target audience that we have learned through MercuryCSC'sGeotraveler research panel is that they are seeking three things: Authenticity…push against homogenizationShared humanity…connecting with other people and having meaningful experiences with those people.Personal awakening…looking to get out of their comfort zone...and experience things that push them so they can learn something about themselves.And the combination of these three things are what makes an experience for them truly great. They don't always get all three in every travel or outdoor experience that they have, but when they do, it's a rush, it's like a drug. Like a runner's high. And they do it again and again… Because of this feeling, they spend money on travel – not only spending money traveling to a destination where they can hike, mountain bike, ski, etc. but also spending money making sure they have the right gear for those outdoor experiences. Travel is not just something that a Geotraveler does, but it also defines who they are.Making them more likely to keep traveling despite a topsy-turvy economy. A perfect audience for the Montana Office of Tourism as it was looking at the bleak 2010 tourism industry forecast. Our next steps was to determine how best to reach them and attract them to the state. So let's talk about that now.
Montana has nothing. Or so some people think.Initial brand discoveryresearch indicated that some people thought there was nothing in Montana and there was no reason to travel to Montana. These people were not Montana's target audience. But through our qualitative research, we knew that "nothing" is indeed "something" to the Geotraveler. Working with the Montana Office of Tourism, we created a marketing campaign targeted to the Geotraveler that capitalized on Montana's mystique, its big skies and wide-opened spaces – and that misconceived perception that Montana has nothing to offer…
…by calling out "there's nothing here."Now, let me take a moment and say that proclaiming there's nothing here wasn't necessarily very popular with the Office of Tourism's stakeholders – with all of the tourism-related businesses across the state. Some were concerned about making a potentially off-putting statement – when we were trying to increase visitation. So, before we launched the campaign, we tested the concept with our Geotraveler research panel. Based on their response, the Montana Office of Tourism was confident that the creative elements worked together, conveyed the brand in an unexpected way and didn't try to appeal to everyone.
We worked with the Montana Office of Tourism and our media partner, Spark Communications of Chicago, to bring Montana to life and leverage all the state had to offer.For national print ads, we used Iconic wildlife and untouched landscape images with that bold intro line, and a simple, editorial-like layout that helped break through the clutter while supporting Montana’s brand of spectacular, unspoiled nature.
A key component of the Office of Tourism's advertising campaign was focusing on key markets-marrying the big creative idea with big compelling out-of-home advertising. Using scale, being unexpected, big and bold and everywhere allowed the creative to showcase Montana and all of its “nothingness”. Folks in Chicago (start clicking), Minneapolis and Seattle witnessed stunning Montana scenery engulfing a double-decker bus. Or breathtaking, larger than life landscapes and wildlife.
Inspired—or provoked—by Montana’s advertising in Chicago, a Chicago Tribune columnist issued a call to arms to her fellow Chicagoans with a cheeky “Take THAT, Montana” photo contest that ensued over several columns and involved the Missoula based newspaper as well – All in good fun and bringing added awareness to the campaign.
To bring the campaign to life online, we created a co-branded ad in a unique format with the Discovery Channel. Half of the banner is Montana messaging; the other half Discovery Digital.
Once a user rolled over the banner, it expanded the content for both partners. Montana’s real estate provided rotating images, copy, and a call to expand the banner further. Discovery’s share featured videos and articles on Montana
And this is what it looked liked when the user expanded the Montana side.
And even more content was revealed… all proving wrong the provocative title of there's nothing here.
Before the campaign launched, the Montana Office of Tourism outlined three marketing objectives that were fairly aggressive given the uncertain economy and a limited budget:
Increase the target audience’s awareness of the Montana brand by three percentage points.
Increase the target audience’s intent to travel to Montana by two percentage points.
Support Montana tourism entities’ goal of increasing their revenues.In order to establish solid benchmarks and measure success, we looked for a marketing research partner that had access to large samples of people who could be screened for their Geotraveler tendencies and then could measure that target audience's awareness and intent levels. Our immediate choice and recommendation to the Montana Office of Tourism was Leisure Trends Group.
As you’ve seen MercuryCSC and the Montana Office of Tourism had all the ingredients for success-focused target audience, a powerful big idea, bold creative and impactful media plan. As we started working together we had confidence the campaign was going to be very effective-but how do we prove that? It was imperative that we measure what the advertising achieved and quantifiably answer whether their marketing objectives were met or not.
To do this, 1 Leisure Trends Group designed custom quantitative brand and advertising awareness studies to establish benchmarks in February 2009 and May 2009 prior to the FY10 campaign launch. 2 While designing this research we needed to take into account all of their specific objectives and measure each individual piece of their marketing plan.
To accurately measure results, it was vital that we survey the right people-the Geotravelers who the advertising campaign was aimed at. Leisure Trends Group’s Most Active Americans panel was the perfect place to find Geotravelers. They are far more active than general population, are educated, affluent, extremely engaged in their activities, and are influential trend setters who purchase at twice the rate of the general population.
LTG used demographic and psychographic screening to ensure the respondents of both phases of research represented the Geotraveler target audience.
Leisure Trends designed research to benchmark awareness of Montana as a potential travel destination, measure awareness of Montana’s advertising and intent to travel to Montana in the near future. This study was fielded before the advertising went into effect. 1 and was available to influence the target audience. 23 Then the study was repeated.
It was imperative that the research capture what was happening in each of the media markets. To accomplish this, LTG included a representative sample of Geotravelers from all three key markets (Seattle, Minneapolis and Chicago). The pre-wave was then conducted in these cities prior to the Ad campaign going live on March 15th, 2009.
Ads go up in these three markets on March 15th including out of home, radio spots and online advertising .
and in May, at the height of the ad campaign, the Post-Campaign wave was fielded. This was identical to the Pre-Wave in terms of targeting the Geotraveler and asking the exact same questions.In this manner, differences seen between the two waves could then be attributed to the advertising campaign’s effect or lack thereof.
LTG also included a national sample who were not exposed to the metro market advertising, to serve as a control group.
Once both waves of research are conducted, what’s next? What specifically are we looking at to determine if the advertising has been successful? First I’ll introduce you to all the metrics and then show you how the ad campaign performed on each one. 1 The first thing we look for is significant changes from the Pre-Campaign wave to the Post-Campaign Wave-if they exist, they can be attributed to the advertising as the only thing that changed between the two points in time. 2 The next thing we look for is a difference in the media markets in comparison to the national control group. Any changes here show that the advertising has been noticed by the target audience.3 A third thing we do is cut the data by those aware of advertising versus those unaware of the advertising, to see what differences there are. If those who are aware of the advertising are more familiar with what Montana offers, if they have a stronger association with key Montana attributes that were highlighted in the advertising, we can definitely state that they are affected by the advertising. 4 Most importantly, if those who are aware of the advertising are significantly more likely to travel to Montana compared to those unaware, we know the advertising is making people want to visit Montana! Which is after all, why we came to the party.
Let’s take each one of these in turn. Did we see significant shifts from Pre-Wave to Post-Wave?
Yes! Unaided ad awareness……Doubled in Seattle (9% to 19%)
tripled in Minneapolis
and increased 17 times in Chicago!Each of our metro markets saw significant increases from Pre-Campaign to Post-Campaign in measurement of unaided advertising awareness.
The next thing we were looking for is a difference in the media markets compared to the national control group (same demographic/psychographic target-The Geotraveler, same survey, same time frame).
Unaided advertising awareness among the national control group was flat. So we can see that the advertising clearly had a big impact on Geotravelers in each of the media markets.
Another key consideration in tracking advertising and brand awareness is that much work is done incrementally, over time.
Aided advertising awareness of Montana was 8% in the first Pre-Wave of the research conducted in February of 2009.
It rose to 14% in Wave 2, the Post-Wave, although that was not a significant shift.
However, during the off season, this momentum was not lost, even though summer advertising was not in force. Wave 3, the Pre-Wave study conducted in March, 2010, before the Summer 2010 campaign launched, registered aided advertising awareness at 15%.
The Post-Wave conducted in May, 2010 shows significant improvement over all prior waves. In many respects this incremental rising over time of the baseline number is as important to observe as the dramatic shifts pre and post advertising because it shows the progress that can be made and held with a consistent marketing strategy. Going to the same metro markets, year after year with similar budgets, allows awareness to build effectively.
Each Wave, Leisure Trends Group divides the respondents into those who are aware of Montana’s advertising (1)and those who are unaware (2) and compares them against each other. This will show what affect the advertising has on Geotravelers…no point increasing awareness of the advertising if it doesn’t make them think and do what MTOT wants them to do! 3 Familiarity with Montana, Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park is significantly higher for those aware of the advertising.
Those aware of the advertising are significantly more likely to associate Yellowstone National Park
and Glacier National Park with Montana than those not aware of the advertising.
They are also more likely to associate with Montana the key attributes featured in the advertising such as Offering a sense of discovery.
and spectacular, unspoiled nature.
Additionally those aware of the advertising are more likely to say they plan to travel to Montana in the near future. 1 In fact, they are 2.5 times more likely to travel to Montana.
As Maclaren outlined earlier we had key objectives to meet, and the research showed that we had exceeded all of them.
Awareness of Montana as a travel destination increased from 11% in May 2009 to 15% in May 2010, a significant increase over 2009.
We needed to show the advertising made people more likely to travel to Montana
Intent to travel to Montana was 13% in 2009
And in 2010, intent to travel nearly doubled, increasing 10 percentage points!
For the third measurable objective, Support Montana tourism entities’ goal of increasing their revenues. We monitored shifts in Montana’s overall visitation, national park visitation and lodging occupancy/revenue.
Glacier National Park experienced a record visitation year with 2.2 million visitors, an increase of 10% over 2009.**
Yellowstone National Park reported a record-breaking year in 2010 with 3.6 million visitors, an increase of more than 300,000 visitors – approximately an 8% increase over 2009. A majority of those visitors came through the West Yellowstone, Montana entrance.** Now a quick note about Yellowstone National Park and why we promote the park and monitor visitation to it. Three of the five entrances to YNP are located in Montana, and Montana has the only entrance that is open year-round. So, even though Montana shares YNP with its Wyoming and Idaho neighbors – and the rest of the nation and the world, we do promote it as it's one of the major reasons why people come to Montana.
We also looked at hotel occupancy rates, According to Smith Travel ResearchMontana had the highest hotel occupancy rate in the nation in July 2010 at 85.1%. And the second highest hotel occupancy rate in the nation in August 2010 at 83.8%
To also demonstrate thethird objective of supporting Montana tourism entities’ goal of increasing their revenues, Leisure Trends Group conducted a follow up study to all Geotravelers who stated they intended to travel to Montana in the near future. We discovered that 11% of these interested Geotravelers did visit Montana in the past year, and gathering their average spend of $992 per trip, LTG estimates that the campaign resulted in approximately $502 million dollars in incremental visitor spending in the past year.Based on FY2010 key market and national media spending (September 2009 to August 2010) of $3.2 million, LTG estimates that for every dollar spent on the advertising campaign $157 dollars in visitor spending was returned.1Compared to previous research conducted for MTOT that calculated $49 dollars in visitor spending returned for every dollar spent in marketing, a 300% improvement in Return on Investment was measured. In summary, the Montana Office of Tourism exceeded all of its marketing objectives
Real results led to real recognition. The Montana Office of Tourism and MercuryCSC, along with our media partner, Spark Communications, received an Effie – the advertising world's highest honor – for this campaign's effectiveness and creativity. Montana was the first destination to receive a Silver Effie in 10 years. The campaign has also received numerous other recognitions from the travel industry. Just this year – the evolution of this campaign received a Platinum Award from the HSMAI – the hospitality sales and marketing association international – among major brands with substantially larger budgets such as Hilton Worldwide and Ritz Carlton.
To wrap it all up, understanding the brand and the target audience provided us with the actionable insights to create a compelling –even risky – creative campaign that achieved great results. Being able to measure and prove those results was critical to not only receiving recognition but also enabled the Montana Office of Tourism team to share the campaign's success to its stakeholders, explain the importance of marketing to the right target audience, and demonstrate the potential for lost ground should budgets not be maintained/expanded. 1 At key points throughout this process, research plays a vital role. Using focus groups and other qualitative tools helps gather those insights and understand the target audience. Quantitative tools such as segmentation research can validate those findings and put true numbers around the size of the audience.2 Concept testing both qualitatively and quantitatively demonstrates that the creative is delivering the objectives and assures stakeholders that it will be positively received by the target audience3 As we outlined, quantitative research plays a vital role in measuring success.4 And Conversion studies help us determine the ultimate success of the ad campaign and calculate ROI.Since this research, the Montana Office of Tourism, MercuryCSC and LTG have continued to partner to track results over time, across new markets, and showcase the value of great teamwork.
WHAT WE DO – STRATEGY + MARKETING
• Connect brands to people who value
travel, outdoors and community
Integrated Communications Agency
• Research and insights
• Brand strategy
• Strategic planning
• Converged media
• Content strategy
• Social media and public relations
• Digital and mobile
• Film and video
6 / 75
RESEARCH AND MARKETING MUST WORK TOGETHER
• Qualitative research leads to insights
• Insights lead to breakthrough creative
• Quantitative research demonstrates success
7 / 75
People who visit destinations
that have retained their
historical, cultural and natural
authenticity of place
14 / 75
• Desire for personalization
• Mindful and attracted to simplicity
• Selective consumption of
• Want a high degree of utility
• Appreciate nature at its best
15 / 75
APEX OF THEIR NEEDS
16 / 75
MAKE SURE IT'S WORKING
USING BRAND AND ADVERTISING
• Significant shifts from pre to post
• Difference in media markets versus control
• Increase in familiarity, key associations and
intent to travel
41 / 75
SIGNIFICANT SHIFTS FROM
PRE TO POST MEASUREMENT
• Unaided ad awareness
42 / 75
SIGNIFICANT SHIFTS FROM
PRE TO POST MEASUREMENT
• Unaided ad awareness
43 / 75
SIGNIFICANT SHIFTS FROM
PRE TO POST MEASUREMENT
• Unaided ad awareness
44 / 75
SIGNIFICANT SHIFTS FROM
PRE TO POST MEASUREMENT
• Unaided ad awareness
45 / 75
DIFFERENCE IN MEDIA MARKETS VERSUS CONTROL
46 / 75
DIFFERENCE IN MEDIA MARKETS
47 / 75