Carnival Cruise Lines Goes Facebook, Skips Web Site
It’s a great video. It’s fun, alive, upbeat and touches a travel nerve: It’s Carnival Cruise Lines new advertising campaign, “Hey America, Didja Ever.”
But the video is not on the cruise line’s web site, confirming, once again, that searches for authentic travel experiences are not found on search engines or on web sites, but on social media networks.
It’s here where people can question, connect and participate with real people in real time.
Since a vast number of American have never taken a cruise, (probably 90% ), Carnival’s chief marketing officer, Jim Berra, knows that the first -time cruiser is a huge market.
"How better to reassure those contemplating their first cruise than to let them experience, on Facebook, the experiences of other cruisers?" he asks .
Berra understands Facebook’s power, and that of social media, when he says that interacting with the brand on Facebook, “ lends an environment where you can talk to experienced cruisers and get unbiased information on Carnival.”
The video is on the Carnival Facebook page where their 455, 266 people who “Like” the page get a chance to see a video with real people, talking about the real things they’d like to do in life, from fly a plane to feed Llamas and deep sea dive or Parasail.
The implication of course is, why wait. Do it now!
Marketing messages? Do it all on Carnival.
And, make your own list and enter the “Didja Ever” contest, and possibly win a free cruise.
Industry publication, Travel Weekly, says this is yet another example of a major cruise line “being dedicated to social media,” and reports that the Facebook campaign is doing very well viz a viz Carnival’s competitors. As of last week, the numbers tell the story:
• Carnival Cruise Line, 455.266 Facebook "Likes"
• Royal Caribbean International, 230,365
• Princess Cruises, 73,942
• Norwegian Cruise Line, 48,058
It may be that these three lines are late to the social media table.
Travel Weekly reports that Berra has seen traffic driven from their Facebook account to their booking web page triple in the last 12 months, allowing Facebook to pass Yahoo as the second largest source of traffic to carnival.com.
For now, Google is still the number 1 traffic driver, but Facebook allows potential cruise-buyers to create initial, human connections, which Google and a web site can’t do.
The “Didja Ever” videos will appear on and off line, including Hulu, YouTube and Yahoo.