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Real time boosts Royal Caribbean

News, 13 July 2016

CANNES: Royal Caribbean, the cruise operator, has successfully used real-time content to help alter negative preconceptions which some consumers – and especially millennials – have about taking to sea for their vacation.

"There's an old saying in cruising, unfortunately, and that's that cruises are for the 'newly-wed, the nearly dead, or the overfed'. So these are the misconceptions that we need to change," said Kara Wallace, VP/North America Marketing at Royal Caribbean International. (For more, read Warc's exclusive report: Real-time content helps Royal Caribbean reach millennials.)

As part of its "Come Seek" campaign, the company turned to Periscope, the livestreaming app, to broadcast in real time from several exotic Caribbean locations, as well as its newest ship, straight to digital billboards in New York City.

More specifically, the "Come Seek Live" program saw hand-picked travel influencers explore various destinations and engage in a diverse range of activities that together showed off the full extent of what the Caribbean has to offer.

"What we're trying to do, really, as an organization is to build cruising for the next generation of cruisers," Wallace reported.

"They think that cruising today is void of adventure, lacks cultural authenticity, and that the Caribbean is a one-size-fits-all experience, when, in fact, that's not what it is."

Royal Caribbean's ships embody this ideal by introducing robot bar tenders, skydiving simulators and other innovative technologies. And its marketing efforts with agency MullenLowe aim to replicate this principle in communications.

"We need to take that into our marketing. So, with Mullen, we have a filter for ourselves: to create marketing that's as innovative and adventurous as the product itself," Wallace said.

Alongside generating millions of social impressions, the Periscope initiative attracted attention from media titles such as Mashable and Fast Company, helping confirm Royal Caribbean's status as a marketing innovator.

"When properties like Mashable and Fast Company and Creativity start picking up the work that we're doing for a category that isn't known for being as innovative, it really is a testament – and a proof point – to the fact that we're living up to our filter of being as innovative and as adventurous as the product itself," said Wallace.

Data sourced from Warc