Bringing 2.2 million extra tourists to the UK

In 2012 there will only be one place to be. With the Olympic and Paralympic Games coming to London next summer, the greatest show on earth is about to arrive in one of the world’s greatest cities. We are determined to make the most of this unprecedented opportunity to ensure we deliver a lasting economic legacy that will benefit the whole country.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron, 2011

The challenge: Win the biggest single brand pitch ever for Yahoo, the 2012 £5m Visit Britain digital campaign. Then deliver on it, by bringing an extra 2.2million visitors to the UK. And after that, retain the business over Google and Facebook. For the following four years.

The big idea: hire influential, UK based bloggers and editors originally from the target markets: France, Germany, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, China, Japan, Australia and the USA. The launch bespoke digital magazines featuring the bloggers, within Yahoo’s key verticals; Travel, Sport, Fashion and News. And make all of the digital ads for Visit Britain in 2012, in all of the markets.

The result: over-delivered on all editorial and content targets in 2012. What stood out was the performance of the digital ad campaign. With an average click rate of close to 1% across all markets, we drove vast amounts of traffic to Visit Britains websites. Also, won the pitch every year for the next four years. A few highlights:

  • 2012: launched a Flickr group that provided VB with 72k photos to use across their websites
  • 2014: created an award-winning Tumblr site, hitting 70k followers within six months
  • 2015: Yahoo EMEA’s largest ever branded video campaign, driving millions of video views globally
  • Maintained an average click rate of 1% for all five years of the campaign, across all digital advertising, across all markets

Contribution to the project: the original idea that won the pitch in 2012, and strategy and creative direction for all the websites, content and digital advertising for the five years of the project.

The video above shows the scale of the offline activity. We created and delivered most of the digital brand advertising from 2012 to 2017.