Hi DCA18 judges, this is our lovely case for our client
Vacanceselect has over 30 years of experience in providing family holidays and is a pioneer and specialist in glamping: camping in nature, with the comfort and luxury of home. While for years the trend has been that people are less inclined to go camping, there is actually an increase in glamping, a concept that was created by Loek van de Loo, founder of Vacanceselect. When Dept was asked to help Vacanceselect spend their media budget more efficiently, we started looking at ways to intelligently use data in the entire orientation and booking process.
Nobody likes to be chased by irrelevant advertisements. Hyperpersonalization ensures that customers can see exactly what they are looking for and only those accommodations that are still available. To do this, we had to make more efficient use of Google and the data of Vacanceselect’s own platforms.
Timing is key
It’s all about showing the right ad to the right person at the right time. When someone has just started browsing, without a clear idea of what they want or where they want to go, they are shown generic information. People that are further along in their journey see relevant options for a specific location or type of accommodation. Relevant ads lead to a relevant landing page, that is adjusted to the needs of the (potential) customer. The focus lies not just on relevance, but also on availability for specific locations at specific times, which is shown in online campaigns. We take into account regional differences in holiday periods. With the help of artificial intelligence we are able to dynamically match available campsites to relevant profiles.
Linking database information to historic behavior allows for the creation of unique customer profiles and segment them based on relevant information like location preferences and family composition. This in turn allows us to more effectively target these groups through online advertising and database marketing.
Using smart profiling, Vacanceselect knows exactly in what phase of the buyer journey (prospective) clients are. Keyword tagging in Google searches provides information about the interests of people who are browsing for a holiday. Based on these data a dynamic landing page is automatically generated when visiting the Vacanceselect website. So when someone is looking for a ‘child-friendly’ campsite in Tuscany, they are shown a page with child-friendly accommodations in that part of Italy.
The media campaigns consist of 24 accounts with millions of keywords and ads. On top of that, Vacanceselect has over a million profiles and more than 500.000 opt-ins. Moreover, there are big differences between last-minute and early bookings. With the use of AdCore ad templates, ads are automatically adjusted to any specific query.
Not only was it the goal to serve relevant ads to (potential) customers in the present, but to also be able to say something about future prospects. Predictive modeling enables proactive adaptations of campaigns and landing pages, while website predictors on an individual level help to predict buying behavior.
At the same time we are able to use existing customer data to find new target audiences. To realize a higher turnover, it’s Vacanceselect’s goal to fill up their campsites as soon as possible. Historical data is used to create look-a-like profiles and target similar audiences early on, allocating more media budget to those groups that are most likely to book a holiday.
To target these audiences Dept created the E-mail List Importer (ELI): a smart tool that automatizes the exchange of customer data between different systems. ELI makes it possible to e-mail personalized offers to prospective customers and then upload these data to Facebook and AdWords, thus showing matching expressions across different channels.
Speaking of different channels: Dept also created a chatbot for Vacanceselect, giving people a mobile guide in helping them find their perfect holiday. By asking specific questions the chatbot is able to show relevant options, narrowing the search with each subsequent step, resulting in a personalized offer.
The challenge was to not only use data, but to use data by thinking about it logically. To work with technology efficiently and in a way that it could be handled by a machine automatically. For Vacanceselect this has led to a 31% increase in sales and a 2% decrease in media spending, more than tripling the initial goals of a 10% growth with the media budget staying the same. In recognition of this achievement the work was already awarded a Dutch Search Award in the category ‘Best use of search in travel and leisure’ .