Visitor numbers to Switzerland were falling every year. Switzerland as a ski destination was considered expensive and out of reach. We realised that we needed some mechanism by which we could help consumers re-appraise Switzerland as a ski holiday destination.
There are 5 main ski regions in Switzerland, each with its own character and beauty. We couldn’t afford to take people out to Switzerland to experience Switzerland for themselves, but we could bring a bit of Switzerland to London! We created 5 giant ice blocks and dropped them into high profile sites across London. By reaching out and (literally) touching a piece of Switzerland, consumers could win discounts and prizes that were suspended in the melting ice. Ambassadors handed out leaflets which directed people to a campaign website, where you could read more, play an online game, and win further prizes. Bloggers spread word of the Ice Block drops and each one was preceded by local press announcements.
By not creating a traditional ‘outbound’ piece of communication, we were able to engage with consumers rather than preach at them. In a way, we’d created the most ambitious ‘sampling’ event ever. Consumers were keen to be seen next to the hunks of ice and to publish their own pictures. The energetic scenes at each venue gave an immediate, and a much warmer, aspect to the brand personality.
The ice blocks were experienced by 250,000 people, 21,000 people visited the campaign website in two weeks and 180,000 people were reached by our bloggers. Most significantly, visitor numbers to Switzerland increased for the first time in four years.