How this Broome holiday resort found the perfect time to
3x their bookings
Key Results
Bookings increased
in December 2020 compared to 2019.
Return on Investment
in December 2020
Of all revenue
in January 2021 came from paid ad efforts, despite the industry suffering.
The Big Problem

Post-COVID, after a massive tourism slump, Moonlight Bay Suites was ready to get geared up for the next big holiday season. But how? The tourism industry was going to go hard in the race for bookings during peak season and advertising was going to be saturated with calls for spontaneous holidays, reminding people to reward themselves for suffering the lockdown.

There was also another issue to deal with. Third-party booking agencies, both a partner and a barrier for them. Consumers turn to these platforms to compare holiday options, which means more bookings for Moonlight Bay Suites and businesses like them. Unfortunately, they also take steep cuts of the profits.

What they needed was to find an edge. To do something the competition wasn’t thinking of and reach potential visitors in a different way.

They came to Dilate in October of 2020 looking to increase their direct bookings, even when the industry was experiencing a downturn. Our mission was to raise Moonlight Bay Suites’ brand awareness so that they would be top of mind for consumers, helping them stand out against competitor advertising.

A look inside the numbers
In December, no one really advertises holidays. And why would you? Most people are already about to head out, or preparing for Christmas with the family. No one is thinking about their winter breaks.

It'd be crazy to try and entice this distracted crowd... right?

We didn't think so. Dilate worked closely with Moonlight Bay Suites to understand their customer, the way they think, where they were hanging out digitally, and realised that there was a perfect opportunity to capture a larger share of the peak season market at amazingly low costs.

But it wouldn't be enough to just reach out at the right time. We had a hit them with the right message.

The key was figuring out the right hook. The right "why" for people to get excited.
People don't book holidays because it makes sense. People go on holidays because they want to, because it takes them away from the tedium of everyday life and closer to a sense of exhilarating escapism. Our ads needed to tap into that special feeling and give people exactly what they wanted.

We decided to launch a comprehensive paid ads strategy across Google and Facebook to try and get in front of potential visitors. The focus of these ads was to build on that emotional angle with compelling visuals featuring rich, crative imagery to connect to the market.

Here's how we did it.

Paid Google Search Ads

Google Smart Campaigns

YouTube Ads

Facebook Ads

Paid Google Search Ads

When looking for a holiday accommodation most people start with a search on Google, so we knew we wanted to take advantage of that prime real-estate with click-worthy ads. This was about capturing the people who were flying high on a recent holiday buzz and not ready to come down. We put out messaging showing the best of Moonlight Bay Suites and targeted these at people more likely to book by selecting keywords that showed that right intent.

Google Smart Campaigns

We used Smart campaigns to highlight the key features of Moonlight Bay Suites and capture interested, localised consumers across the Google network of platforms and partner sites.

This allowed us to reach people who weren’t necessarily directly looking for holiday bookings but could be convinced. The Smart Campaign also helped display the perfect image and message for each viewer, learning based on their Google profile and how they interacted with the ads. Powerful visual combinations drove a high amount of traffic straight to Moonlight Bay Suites’ website and significantly lifted brand awareness.

Managed well and monitored consistently, a Smart Campaign is a great way to tap into the power of Google and use its expertise directly to find new opportunities.

YouTube Ads

We knew engaging visual content would be hugely persuasive for people dreaming of their next trip. We used YouTube ads to show off some really great footage of the accommodation.

Pushing through the Google Display Network through its family of apps means greater brand awareness. While the main goal was bookings, we also needed to think ahead to the peak advertising period and start laying the groundwork to beat the competition at that point, and helping to stand out against third-party booking sites that take a large cut of profits.

Facebook Ads

We created highly engaging and targeted Facebook and Instagram ads and ran them over these super quiet months. The focus was visuals, to match the platform and audience, and highlighted the location’s selling points. The result? A really strong return on investment when the rest of the industry went down.

Saw 300% increase in bookings while the rest of the industry went down in what's typically one of the quitest months.
We encouraged them to buck the trend and keep up their ad spend during the off peak season - and it paid off with a 7.7 return on ad spend.
Taking things the extra mile, we looked at how they could expanded the strategy - for example, posting the ads across to Facebooks Groups.

The Power of Digital

Discovering this huge opportunity was a game-changer. The goal was bookings, which we achieved, but there was a lot more that came with it.

Moonlight Bay Suites got ahead of the game, doubling down an advertising during the quiet period so they could capture a large portion of the peak season market without peak spend. The lower competition meant the advertising budget was used more effectively, pushing down their spend and pushing up their margins.

But the real key was the connection to the audience. The right timing won't mean anything if you're not where your audience is when they really want to be spoken to. Having the right crative for the right platform was the biggest driver of success in this campaign.

The brand awareness generated through the Google Display Network ads was pivotal in really driving the traffic, and will push them to the top of mind in consumers' research phase to that they'll bypass third-party booking sites and go straight to Moonlight Bay Suites. Even during the peak period.

It also means they've got less capacity to fill going into the heavy adverising period, which will allow more flexibility in their strategy and higher yield for capacity, building on the brand awareness we created in the off peak.

At Dilate, we're stoked we could get such amazing results for the Moonlight Bay Suites and we're looking forward to taking it even further in the future. We're pumped to see them grow and scale up with the big increase in the bookings. An exciting facelift could be on the cards for Moonlight Bay Suites in the future - and we're pleased as punch to be on board helping them get there!

Want to scale your tourism business? Speak to the experts!

Get your business ot the next level and see bookings rocket up with carefully plan paid ads campaign across Google, Facebook and more! As proud Facebook and Google Premier Partners, we've got the experience, knowledge and expert access to get you the best result.

To get started, jump on a call with us today on 1300 345 283 or send through an enquiry.


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