Norwegian Cruise Line’s “Feel Free” campaign invites passengers to rid themselves of their busy schedules. // © 2016 Norwegian Cruise Line
Feature image (above): Celebrity Cruises’ new campaign makes use of the iconic X featured in its logo. // © 2016 Celebrity Cruises
Four major cruise lines — Celebrity Cruises, Holland America Line (HAL), MSC Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line — have announced dramatic new campaigns to spur sales, and they are using top talent to get their messages across.
MSC Cruises has unveiled its new global brand positioning, “Not Just Any Cruise,” which has been developed to support the company’s growth plans, which involve doubling capacity, with seven new ships in the next six years and an investment of about $5.7 billion.
“It’s important that we evolve our positioning along with this growth,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises.
Based on the results of a yearlong global consumer research study (centered in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S) on leisure travelers’ needs, the campaign emphasizes the line’s modern ships, comfortable accommodations, fresh and authentic food, award-winning entertainment, relaxation, impeccable service, expertise and elegant design.
MSC worked with strategic communications firm McCann Worldgroup and Oscar-nominated British film director Daniel Barber on the campaign. The soundtrack for its commercial is written by Ennio Morricone, who conducted the concert for the christening of MSC Orchestra in 2007.
The new message from Celebrity Cruises is “Modern Luxury Lives Here,” a campaign that makes use of the iconic X in the Celebrity logo to showcase what makes the line unique: its award-winning dining, extraordinary accommodations and service, rich destination experiences and travel to all seven continents in modern luxury style. Its new 30- and 60-second television spots employs the children’s game Marco Polo, as Celebrity staff members beckon like-minded travelers to answer the call of modern luxury. The fully integrated campaign is the first public result of Celebrity's collaboration with advertising agency Venables Bell & Partners.
"This is a recruitment drive," said Paul Venables, chairman of Venables Bell & Partners. "We are calling out to not just those who cruise, but to all modern luxury travelers. We have to break the usual category conventions.”
Holland America Line
HAL is evolving its image with a new brand campaign that introduces a refreshed logo, a new advertising campaign and a new tag line that invites guests to “Savor the Journey.” It is rolling the campaign out via local and national television commercials — a first in several years — as well as print ads, radio spots, digital advertising, direct mail and email.
Savor the Journey tells the story of today’s HAL cruise experience, from the line’s range of destinations to its classic style, gracious service, exceptional cuisine and onboard entertainment and enrichment programs.
“HAL is evolving, and we are certain that travel professionals are taking notice and will appreciate our extensive efforts to drive cruise business,” said Orlando Ashford, president of HAL. “We are committed to the agent community, and all advertising directs consumers to contact a travel professional.”
Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Cruise Line’s “Feel Free” integrated campaign, launched Jan. 4, uses national television spots, online video and social media to invite vacationers to travel free from rigid schedules, with the freedom to make the vacation their own.
Meg Lee, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Norwegian, calls this “a new day for Norwegian.” The campaign is hitting national television for the first time in many years, as well as online and in print. Lee says it made sense to increase investment in more than just key markets, as the company brings out so many new ships. Musical artist Pitbull, who was godfather to this year’s Norwegian Escape, created the soundtrack for the new campaign with a song called “Freedom.”
Lee says Feel Free is linked to Norwegian’s new “Free at Sea” promotion, which allows guests to choose from four free offers: free unlimited beverages, free specialty dining, free shore excursions or free Wi-Fi access, creating their own inclusive package.