Experiential ad campaigns that engage participants have a double impact, both in the flesh and later watched online.

This week’s travel ads roundup includes three videos that show an overview of real-life campaigns that surprised, pleased, and motivated their participants. Train company SNCF, the City of Oslo, and Hyatt Hotels all hit home runs and we can’t help but smile along.


The best ambient ad of 2013 comes from European high-speed train company SNCF.

A single door was placed in the middle of city plazas around Europe, each with the name of different city in a nearby country. The citizens who dared to open the door found a live video chat set up with people in the destination marked on the door. There was a street performer in Milan, dancers in Barcelona, a painter in Brussels, a rowboat in Geneva, and a bike ride in Stuttgart.

The music tied with the delightful surprise on participants’ faces makes the video complete, especially when connected to the campaign slogan: “Europe. It’s Just Next Door.” The ad was created by French ad agency TBWA.

Hyatt Hotels took its “stay refreshed” branding quite literally with this real-life marketing project. Hotel employees took to the streets of Santa Monica to hand out fresh orange juice to pleasantly surprised pedestrians. The idea behind the experiential campaign can be summed up with this quote from the video:

“Serving up our own brand of cool, we kept the people of L.A. moving. Because in a Hyatt world, we think energy and smiles are worth spreading.”

This new Ibis Styles ad says a lot with few words. It uses images of properties, graphic icons, funky music, and dancing to set the tone of the brand while promoting comfort, unique designs at different properties, and all-inclusive packages.

The Ibis brand is constantly uploading new videos to its YouTube account so we talked to brand executives to find out why, and what the videos impact are, here.

The City of Oslo launched a social media campaign last month to get people as interested in recycling their food as they are in taking photos of it. The campaign encouraged people to tag their food pics with #grønnpose, which means ‘green bag.’

Each hashtag moved an actual bus 12 meters with the goal of getting the bus from the first to last stop. The campaign more than achieved its goal with 4,000+ submitted photos, a 17 percent increased in food recycling among the target group, and a 75 percent increase in the city’s Facebook “Likes.”


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Tags: hyatt, marketing, norway, skiftadsweek, sncf

Photo credit: A scene from train operator SNCF's creative ambient ad campaign, "Europe. It's Just Next Door." TBWA PARIS

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