Thomas Cook has brought back its ‘Don’t just book it, Thomas Cook it’ strapline in this year’s turn-of-year campaign with one of its two TV adverts a nod to its popular ‘shark boy’ clip.
The Man, set to I Am The Cool by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, clocks the faces of daunted-looking hotel staff and guests as something behind the camera makes its way around the poolside. It turns out to be a young girl in armbands ready to make a splash as she confidently struts towards the water.
The advert is reminiscent of Cook’s ‘shark boy’ advert from two years ago which depicts a boy with a fin strapped to his back dancing before diving into the swimming pool to the tune of Be Bold by Tam Cooper.
Thomas Cook’s UK marketing director Chris Chalmers said: “It was born out of our insight that kids really grow in confidence on holiday, and do things that you wouldn’t expect them to do when they’re on holiday. Abigail [the girl in the new advert] is a really good example of that and the advert is really emotive. We are really excited to see how it lands.”
The Man, which debuts on December 23, is one of two adverts to be released this Christmas by Thomas Cook.
In a brand-focused advert called The Chase, out on Christmas Day during the advert break in Coronation Street, a couple is seen running after each other through one of Cook’s adult-only own-brand hotels in Rhodes.
“It gives a clear narrative,” said Chalmers. “It’s targeted towards couples and has real intent in terms of its connection.”
The ads, separately, are designed to help children grow in confidence and help adults rediscover their youth. Both can be tracked via smart phone app Shazam, which recognises the advert is Thomas Cook and offers users the chance to look at the own-brand hotels in a 360 degree virtual tour on their smartphones.
On the return of the strapline ‘Don’t just book it, Thomas Cook it’ for the first time since 2013, Chalmers said: “It was a conscious decision to bring it back and make it a considered part of our strategy. Holiday makers are looking for a more personal experience and the line really fits with the mantra that there’s more to a holiday with Thomas Cook than just booking it, such as our recent new features like Choose Your Room and guaranteed room on arrival.
“The strapline was never sunsetted. The campaigns that followed had their own strap lines that really underlined the campaigns but its really important we build on previous campaigns.
“Last year’s campaign was more generic and didn’t as clearly reference points of our branded hotel concepts as we have this year.”
The new campaign, will run across 15 markets and multiple channels, including TV, social, digital and in store throughout next year. The Man will launch on thomascook.com on Saturday December 23 before airing on TV during the advert break of the Secret Life of Five Year Olds on Holiday on Thursday 28th December.
The adverts will be run in 60-second and shorter 30-second versions.
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