|Title||A NEW NEW ZEALAND|
|Product / Service||COASTAL PACIFIC|
|Category||A07. Travel / Leisure|
|Entrant||DDB NEW ZEALAND Auckland, NEW ZEALAND|
|Idea Creation||DDB NEW ZEALAND Auckland, NEW ZEALAND|
|Media Placement||OMD WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND|
|PR||DDB NEW ZEALAND Auckland, NEW ZEALAND|
|PR 2||MANGO Auckland, NEW ZEALAND|
|Production||DDB NEW ZEALAND Auckland, NEW ZEALAND|
|Additional Company||KIWIRAIL Wellington, NEW ZEALAND|
|Damon Stapleton||DDB Group New Zealand||Regional Chief Creative Officer|
|Brett Colliver||DDB Group New Zealand||Creative Director|
|Mike Felix||DDB Group New Zealand||Creative Director|
|Adam Barnes||DDB Group New Zealand||Art Director|
|James O'Sullivan||DDB Group New Zealand||Copywriter|
|James Blair||DDB Group New Zealand||Lead Business Partner|
|Amy Harrison||DDB Group New Zealand||Business Manager|
|Julz Lane||DDB Group New Zealand||Agency Producer|
|Sheetal Pradhan||DDB Group New Zealand||Digital Producer|
|Melissa Ching||DDB Group New Zealand||Social Producer|
|Nicole Dekker||DDB Group New Zealand||Senior Mac Designer|
|Claudia McDonald||Mango||Managing Director|
|Eleisha Balmer||Mango||Senior Account Director|
|Charlotte Caines||Mango||Senior Account Executive|
|Katy Hughes||Mango||Senior Account Manager|
On paper our job was to sell train tickets. But people won’t buy train tickets to a place the media has told them is destroyed. So our job was actually to manage Kaikoura’s bad PR. But we didn’t just manage it, we flipped a destroyed region into a magical new landscape. The journalists who wrote the original quotes were then invited on the first train journey to see how their words were helping the region. Following this they wrote positive articles, generating free PR and tourist interest.
The 2016 Kaikoura earthquake was one of the most reported natural disasters in New Zealand’s history. The Coastal Pacific railway, an icon of the region that relies heavily on tourism, was severed, causing an estimated loss of $63 million for the area. It took two years to repair the track and in 2018 when Kiwirail was ready to reopen the line, we had to challenge the perception the local media had painted of the region, turning it from a wasteland into a destination worth visiting.
Amongst the destruction, the earthquake had uplifted 80km of coastline, uncovered amazing new geological features, and even created an entirely new alpine lake. So to draw New Zealanders back to the region we took quotes straight from the original news articles. Words that had previously described the destruction. We paired them with striking photo-journalist images of the new landmarks and they were then placed back in the original publications, recontextualising the journalists’ words and asking the public to both rethink and revisit the region. The journalists who wrote the original quotes were then invited on the first journey to see how their words were helping the region and compelling them to write positive articles for local publications, generating free media and increasing tourist interest.
Our strategy was to challenge people’s perceptions of the area by showing them that Kaikoura hadn’t been destroyed, it had actually been turned into a stunning new destination.
The campaign ran from 9th September to 25th November 2018, with 9 insertions in newspapers nationwide and targeted the regions most likely to travel on the Coastal Pacific Train. 3 of the placements were full front page wraps in New Zealand's biggest newspapers. All of the headlines ran in the same newspapers they originally appeared in following the earthquake.
On paper our job was to sell train tickets. But people won’t buy train tickets to a place the media has told them is destroyed. So our job was actually to make Kaikoura seem like a magical place to visit. And that’s exactly what this campaign did. So far 23,466 seats have been sold this season, which is actually 17% more than before the quake. Kaikoura’s annual visitor spend was up 89% in 2019 and AirBnB named Kaikoura it’s number 1 trending destination.