Staff Reporters
Mar 12, 2020

How does a brand measure offline success through an online campaign?

CASE STUDY: How Tourism New Zealand and Google got a better handle on whether online ads resulted in real-world visits to the country.


Tourism New Zealand wanted to better ascertain whether people who were seeing its ads were actually acting upon them and visiting the country.


In a recent campaign, the brand partnered up with the Google Ads team to look for answers. Running display ad campaigns was not new to the brand, but this time, it needed an advanced tailored measurement approach to attribute what was happening in the real world to its online advertising efforts.

What proved doubly challenging was that this conversion type wasn’t exactly easy to achieve, as people had to actually pack their bags and travel to a different country. Plus, to abide by privacy laws, all data had to be anonymised and used at an aggregated level only.

Phase one of the campaign saw the setting up of two test groups in Australia: The control group was shown a non-promotional ad, while the exposed group was served an ad from the organisation's 100% Pure New Zealand campaign.

Phase two was a follow-up with visitors. This involved another display campaign launched in New Zealand to connect with people who had visited the country after seeing or clicking on either ad in Australia. The tourism board served these tourists an ad promoting responsible travel.


To measure incremental visits, Tourism New Zealand used Google's Campaign Manager to match each unique impression for its campaign in New Zealand to each unique impression for its campaign in Australia. Each match was counted as a country visit.

It then tapped the BigQuery tool to compare the number of visitors who came to New Zealand after seeing a promotional ad to the number of travellers who visited after seeing a non-promotional ad.

Initial findings showed that the promotional display campaign drove 11% incremental tourist visits that would not have occurred organically. Through continued and scaled experimentation with this measurement solution, the brand observed improving results when evaluated over a longer time span.

Plus, based on average tourism contribution when visiting, these incrmental visits delivered an overall ROI of 25:1.

Related Articles

Just Published

10 hours ago

Singapore introduces new laws to curb harmful ...

Singapore's parliament will debate the bill at the second reading in November.

11 hours ago

Kiwi life insurer raises the dead for a last ...

The work by Special New Zealand gives knocked-off drama series characters one last shot at acting, put to good use plugging Partners Life insurance.

11 hours ago

Women to Watch 2022: Emma Campbell, Tourism Fiji

Playing a key part in the revival of Fiji’s tourism, Campbell has built commercial success and a team of leaders while operating in a new country during the pandemic.

12 hours ago

CirclesLife's marketing lead on building a ...

The telco has moved past vanity metrics for its campaigns—such as clicks and viewable impressions—in favour of metrics that show a clear path to business outcomes, such as sales.