Hotels.com is extending its Clay Yourself digital avatar campaign with a social entertainment experience to woo Facebookers to engage with the brand.
Billed as three wild nights and featuring b-list celebs, the mildly risque “Trip Your Face” experience combines elements of the OfficeMax Elf Yourself campaign, Perrier’s digital tease with Dita Von Teese and ties into pre-Hangover 2 buzz, without being overtly related to that movie’s plot or characters.
The Expedia-owned site’s new Trip Your Face website is the hub for an interactive journey that starts when visitors select one of three destinations (New York, Paris or Las Vegas) and upload their Facebook photo plus profile photos of up to three friends to participate in the fun.[more]
After choosing which actors to superimpose their faces onto (after a bit of technical fiddling), the action moves to a screen that features a hotel room in New York, Las Vegas or Paris.
As in The Hangover, each hotel room and a trashed hotel room (a video flashback button helps fill in the backstory). The Paris hotel room features retired NBA star Dennis Rodman with some scantily clad women; Las Vegas features Vanilla Ice; while New York’s gangster-style getaway is celeb-free.
Users can then tag their friends and give them a preview of the trip, and the trouble they got into, through their Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts.
“We wanted to produce something where people could put their faces into live action, which I don’t think has been done in a campaign before, and it certainly hasn’t been done in our category,” commented Vic Walia, senior director for North America brand advertising at the Expedia-owned Hotels.com, to the New York Times.
“Since they are a digital company and digital brand it’s important for them to invest in new and emerging technology, not just for the e-commerce site but also for the way in which they market and brand themselves,” said Matthew Witt, director of digital production at Young Rubicam.
“People post vacation photos on Facebook, so we thought of Facebook as kind of helping us seize this idea,” YR creative director Sonya Grewal added. “We thought, ‘How cool would it be if you created these videos that happened in hotel rooms, and you are a part of it and so are your friends?’ ”
The Times notes that even though the online travel agent category was down 9% in March compared with a year ago, “according to comScore, Hotels.com traffic rose 9%, to 4.9 million unique visitors.”
“This is taking it up a notch and saying we can make this look more realistic and more lifelike,” Vic Walia commented on the brand’s biggest digital foray to date. “The bar is higher now, and consumers are more and more tech-savvy and we need to give them credit in that area.”
Below, check out some of the pre-superimposted Trip Your Face video scenarios: