Travelocity’s ‘Live’ Gnome Sees Too Much

NEW YORK The traveling gnome gets an eyeful in a live-action television commercial, which broke on Monday, for Travelocity via McKinney + Silver.

The gnome, the spokescharacter for the online travel site since January, sits on the floor of a hotel room as two travelers become amorous on the bed, off camera. As a phone gets knocked to the floor, the gnome calls Travelocity’s 24-hour customer service desk to let them know the couple will need a later flight.

The ad focuses on the customer service desk because “I think there’s a perception of online travel, because you book it yourself, that once you hit book, you’re on your own,” said group creative director Lisa Shimotakahara. “It’s a perception a lot of people have. Travelocity’s customer service is great, there are real live people helping you.”

Hungry Man’s Marcos Siega directed the spot for the Raleigh, N.C., shop. He was tapped for his light humorous touch on ads for Doritos and Red Stripe, according to Shimotakahara.

It’s the first live-action TV spot starring the gnome. Previous TV commercials featuring him were created in a slide show format.

“We wanted to keep the campaign fresh and dimensionalize it,” Shimotakahara said about the change.

Executive creative director David Baldwin, group creative director Philip Marchington, art director Wes Whitner and copywriter Mitch Bennett also worked on the spot, which will run on cable stations including Bravo and Comedy Central.