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Travel Site Ads Promise Service

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C-K's Print Work for iExplore.com Seeks to Inspire Awe and Trust
CHICAGO--Cramer-Krasselt attempts to inspire travelers and grab their trust in its debut printwork for startup online travel service iExplore.com.
Ads for iExplore, Chicago, break in May issues of upscale magazines, including Outside, National Geographic, Gourmet and Condƒ Nast Traveler. Spending was not disclosed, but when C-K won the business in December following a review sources estimated the company would put $10-15 million behind the ad effort.
The agency's print ads use lush photography of exotic locales. Superimposed on the edge of each photo is a rendering of a tag like those found in pockets of new garments, "Inspected by expert #51." Those numbers refer to a specfic regional expert who is available to iExplore users.
"The idea is to accomplish two things: to inspire people and to instill trust in the company," said Rebecca Rush, an associate creative director at C-K, Chicago.
The photo is the awe-inspiring element, but it is also intended to "make you feel like you can put yourself in there," Rush said. "They're not just postcards."
The Web site is aimed at those who are after "adventure and experiential travel ... not the tour bus crowd," Rush said. At the same time, it's not for "those who are so far out there," such as younger backpackers who would prefer to feel they are traveling into territory previously untainted by outsiders.
"This is for the person who wants to do this, but it's a bit of a scary thing," Rush said.
Copy employs a typewriter typeface to resemble a dispatch from the field and suggests, "If you've got a travel dream, chances are we've lived it." The campaign's tagline is, "Come back different."
"A lot of sites talk about planning and going," Rush said. "This takes it a third step, about coming back and feeling changed and enriched."
The site, backed by Tribune Ventures, a unit of the Tribune Co., and Bear Ventures in New York, has travel information on 140 countries. K