Marco Polo, Vasco da Gama, Christopher Columbus. Much of our history is based on the courageous and adventurous acts of a few who set out in to the unknown to explore new lands. Today technology has made travel accessible to all and we can collectively share in the experiences of others. However, Expedia needed to reclaim its position as pioneer of online travel and communicate the benefits of its new innovations, particularly its new mobile itinerary.
Expedia needed to find an engaging journey where an app would play a key role. Although technology has changed the way we travel, our longing for adventure lives on. I t’s this hunger to discover and share new experiences that encouraged Expedia to reinforce the link between epic travelers of the past and the behavior of today’s Modern Explorer.
Today preparation is online and on the go. Modern Explorers scour useful blogs and are focused in their quest for the best travel choices. They share their experiences through social media; inspiring friends, family – and even strangers – to follow in their footsteps. Expedia decided that four lucky travelers would get to recreate one of the most iconic trips in human history: retracing Vasco da Gama’s epic route starting in Lisbon, traveling through the Canaries, around the Cape of Good Hope, up to Mozambique and finishing in Goa, India.
In partnership with Microsoft, an integrated solution for Expedia was created across Bing and Skype. One of the campaign’s most innovative solutions was a shareable map. This custom Bing Map allowed users to click on all of the countries they have visited. By using the data provided, users were then served suggestions of places they hadn't been to yet, with a call to action to discover more on the Expedia website.
Microsoft also set up a Skype Q&A session, where users could send in their Skype video and Tweet their questions, and the Modern Explorers could then answer users back from the trip. The Q&As were then cut into videos so all could benefit from finding out where the best beaches were in Lisbon or best bars in Cape Town.
The Modern Explorers campaign succeeded in reinforcing Expedia’s association with inspirational, rewarding travel experiences enhanced by technology. Over 7 million people were exposed to the campaign resulting in 1.8 million page views of Modern Explorer content and more than 300k visits to the campaign hub. Nearly one in ten people who visit the hub come back for more content. The map challenge has been undertaken by over 7K people, with 1 in 5 of those clicking on Expedia ads.