Tourism Australia’s push into virtual reality pays real life dividends with 64% higher engagement

Tourism’s Australia’s push into VR and 360 advertising on Facebook has paid immediate dividends with the number of Americans intending to visit jumping significantly on the back of the launch of the campaign.

Ronson says VR push has been a huge success

Ronson: Using Facebook as a platform for the 360 ads has lifted engagement to new levels

The innovative videos allow people to experience Australia via VR using Google Goggles or other VR devices, launched in New York on Australia Day.

Since the campaign launch there has been more than 10 million views of the broadcast ad and the 360 films, and a 64% increase in engagement on, with time on site averaging more than eight minutes.

And the tourism body has signalled it intends to deepen its relationship with the social media platform.

The campaign was anchored in a traditional ad starring Australian actor, Chris Hemsworth, but also featured a number of 360 videos that allowed consumers to immerse themselves in a range of destinations.

Tourism Australia chief marketing officer, Lisa Ronson, said the VR campaign has helped push the tourism market to record levels.

“This is about giving US consumers and potential travellers to Australia a deeper, more immersive experience of our destination. The response, so far, from the activity we’ve rolled out in the US has been fantastic,” Ronson said.

A Nielsen survey carried out immediately after the Facebook campaign revealed intent to visit amongst Americans viewing the video clips was three times higher than the industry average for similar travel and tourism campaigns.

Ronson said that using Facebook as a platform for the 360 ads has lifted engagement to new levels.

“It’s a fantastic platform for our 360 video footage and based on the engagement we’ve been getting to our posts, it’s definitely providing the inspiration for potential travellers to take that crucial next step towards booking a holiday to Australia,” she said.

At the recent Mumbrella Travel Marketing Summit, Ronson warned that virtual reality content needed to be engaging and that marketers should not get dazzled by the technology.

Simon Canning


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