Royal Caribbean Breaks TV Ads

Royal Caribbean has unveiled a national TV push from Arnold Worldwide designed to drive customers to its Web site for a taste of “virtual cruising.”

A series of 30-second spots from the Boston agency use the percussive pop song “Lust for Life” as a soundtrack behind colorful, quick-cut images of vacationers having fun aboard the client’s cruise ships, swimming in the ocean with stingrays and enjoying the sites of Copenhagen. The commercials close by directing viewers to the Web site.

The campaign breaks this week and will run through year’s end.

Though the effort’s “Get out there” tagline has been used in Royal Caribbean ads in the past, that positioning is emphasized in the breaking commercials, which eschew the “Like no vacation on earth” theme Arnold coined last year and continues to employ in print efforts.

The campaign’s overall goal is to convince consumers to book cruises, online or otherwise, by giving them a multi-layered experience of what a cruise will be like, said Pam Hamelin, executive vice president of Boston-based Arnold.

The spots provide “a very brief taste” of that experience, which is reinforced at the Web site, where the actors who appear in the commercials are featured in different vacation scenarios, Hamelin said. At the site, consumers can also take a virtual sample of cruise activities. Such content was developed by Arnold’s interactive unit; sister shop handled back-end technology chores.

“They can really experience what a cruise is all about,” said Dan Hanrahan, senior vice president of sales and marketing with Miami-based Royal Caribbean.

Arnold has handled creative chores and media planning for the client since 1999. Broadcast buying is done by The Media Edge, New York. Royal Caribbean spent $30 million on advertising its namesake brand through the first nine months of 2000, according to Competitive Media Reporting. Spending will increase slightly in 2001, Hanrahan said.