The National Caravan Council had been running outdoor lifestyle events for 8 years – the Motorhome & Caravan Show and the Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show. We were invited to pitch for the campaign concepts for both shows alongside the TV ads.
They told us their visitor numbers had been consistent for 10 years and were looking for a fresh approach. Their advertising had traditionally been a montage of manufacturer footage and images and very left-brain in its thinking. This was something they were open to be challenged on and so we got to work.
We know from the research and analysis work done by Les Binet, Peter Field and Orlando Wood that right-brain advertising (appealing on an emotional level) is more effective at long-term growth – based on 18 years of IPA data it’s hard to argue with. It builds memory structures and brand salience, ultimately increasing ROI and brand growth. But more so than that, it has also been proven to improve the effectiveness of short-term activation. A perfect marriage for the NCC shows.
Our research showed that staycations and eco-tourism were on the rise and helped us define audience profiles for each of the shows. We pitched campaign creative that really honed in on the emotion of getting outdoors, positioning the predominantly leisure vehicle focussed Motorhome & Caravan show as for ‘the biggest of adventures’. Britain has some breath-taking landscapes – from the dramatic to the picturesque – and it only felt right to hero these in the imagery.
After years of promoting their show and its offering in a left-brain, literal way, NCC really embraced the new direction.
The campaign incorporated specialist press, radio, TV, OOH and exhibition design. We partnered with Method In Motion to make the tight TV budget work and – with the weather gods shining down on us – we shot the ad in one day on Lake Buttermere. Space had been booked on the M5 and M6 digital billboards with the ability to change the creative at different times of day. We decided capturing the same scene at different times of day and displaying them to match in real-time would be a nice idea. Verity Milligan shot the stills – literally into the face of a thunderstorm and in the aftermath the following morning. Landscape images of Britain were curated for the press, digital ads and exhibition graphics, and radio was recorded by the hugely talented Brian Savin.