Costa Cruises, an internationally well-known cruise line, is challenged with a lack of brand awareness in the US. They needed to find a way to get their brand in consideration with the larger North American cruise players that had significantly higher marketing budgets. The goal was to drive people to their site to register and request brochures to learn more about the Costa experience.
Developed a pay-per-click search campaign strategy, in order to get Costa into consideration in the North American online travel research process and drive accountable results from a modest budget.
Beginning in June 2007, Costa committed to a PPC search campaign. The campaign was launched with both Caribbean and Mediterranean sub-campaigns, and both branded and unbranded terms. The campaign was optimized over a period of twelve months, through keyword optimization, campaign and bid management, and the creation of additional sub-campaigns for testing and insight.
A call tracking effort was implemented with the campaign that tracked 800#s in the search copy as well as tracking the phone calls driven from site visits originated through search.
The campaign drove a significant amount of site registrations and brochure requests on a monthly basis, as well as online and estimated offline cruise bookings. For each dollar spent, the Costa Cruises PPC campaign delivered an ROI of $1.89.
In the first six months, the cost per action attributed to the campaign dropped 60%. Over the course of 12 months (June 2007 - May 2008), the campaign has seen an overall average click through rate increase by 125%.
Costa achieved a 41% share of voice in generic Mediterranean cruise terms on Google in Q1 2008.
The PPC campaign is Costa’s most accountable marketing effort, not only identifying the registrations, brochure requests and bookings that are drawn from the campaign, but also identifying call volumes driven by search activity.