The success of Tourism Australia’s renowned Dundee ad campaign was down to the brand’s willingness to go against the grain of ad norms in its sector, Lisa Ronson, Tourism Australia CMO, told a Spikes Asia 2018 audience this morning.
Taking the view that tourism advertising is all “pretty much the same, and pretty shit really,” Ronson said the whole audacious notion of creating a fake movie and showing its final twist during the Super Bowl was something “that only we could do” because of the uniquely Australian traits that US consumers associate with the nation.
“The saying in the US is ‘a party’s always better with an Aussie there’ and we obviously agree with that,” Ronson quipped. But she said taking such a bold idea was based on reams of media data that helped convince TA that Dundee was pitched perfectly for the high-value US audience it was targeting.
The fact that Americans still love Crocodile Dundee, that “everyone is obsessed with nostalgia and reboots”, she said, that credible voices were organically discussing and sharing the content, all of this was planned for. But, as Chris Colter, global strategy director at UM said, “you need the big magnetic idea, otherwise you’ll only engage people who already want to come to your country.”
Colter shared an ominous stat from the Ehrenberg Bass Institute that only 16% of all advertising is correctly remembered and attributed. “So effectively 84% of stuff we put out isn’t delivering what we want,” he said. “Far too many marketers are still not thinking about what the consumer wants first.”