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Merlin Entertainments

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The Challenge

The ski-season in Australia is brief, and competition among resorts for the customer dollar is fierce. Merlin Entertainments’ Mt Hotham and Falls Creek sites needed to meet aggressive online sales targets in a market where the customer is king and online discounts and deals are abundant.

The Solution

Capturing The Experience

Getting customers to choose Mt Hotham or Falls Creek was as much about inspiring them as it was the final click. We used newsfeed video ads to capture the experience of being on the mountain and build affinity with existing and new audiences. Audiences could purchase straight away, or they could lose themselves in a winter daydream for a few seconds.

 

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Social Media Starts The Customer Path To Purchase

We integrated Facebook advertising with search to expand Falls Creek and Mt Hotham’s share of voice along the entire customer journey. For example, video footage right from the mountain, delivered to the news feeds of existing and new audiences gave potential customers inspiration and insight before purchasing the product. We also ensured every post included a functional 'Book Now' option to drive website clicks and sales conversions.

Mobile First

Initial A/B tests revealed a 70% increase in engagement from mobile only audiences. This became a focal point for the rest of the campaign, introducing new audiences and creative across this mobile-first approach by allocating over 95% of advertising budget to target mobile only newsfeeds.

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Hyper-specific Audience Targeting

We extended our understanding of the ski-season audience by building psychographic profiles of different types of existing customers: from families to university students to seniors. We then used this data to create newsfeed content that was optimized for each audience set.

The Result

The numbers in the Falls Creek/Mt Hotham campaign speak for themselves. A massive $77K in socially attributable value was achieved across the ski season, with reach of more than 200K for newsfeed content and click-through rates as high as 2.2% (well above industry average 0.26%).

28,232

Website clicks during campaign

1,263,163

People reached during campaign

1.10%

Total average click-through rate

ARN

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