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Expedia Media Solutions grows marketing partnerships with Destinations Worldwide

Expedia Media Solutions, the ad sales division of Expedia, Inc., continues to gain momentum as a key marketing partner for destination organizations around the globe, creating highly effective campaigns that have proven to increase tourism and hotel bookings for their partners’ destinations. In 2009, Expedia celebrated successful campaigns for more than 350 destination marketing organizations (DMOs), including Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau, VisitDenmark and San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau, which recently named Expedia its "Partner of the Year." Additionally, in the first two months of 2010, Expedia Media Solutions has signed partnerships with several tourism boards, such as Tourism British Columbia, South Africa Tourism and Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions.

"Collaborating with Expedia on European campaigns has given us an unparalleled level of cooperative exposure to travel shoppers across Europe," said Andrew van der Feltz, Director UK and Ireland, Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions. "The Expedia Media Solutions team uses their expertise and in-depth knowledge of online consumer travel behaviour to create integrated, strategic campaigns to meet our key marketing objectives. We leverage Expedia’s brand and marketing reach to further drive interaction using relevant and insightful content about Holland’s cities, events and attractions."

Expedia, Inc. is the largest travel company worldwide, and the Expedia Media Solutions team offers destinations the ability to promote their brands across multiple channels, including Expedia’s more than 70 global sites, offline platforms and more. Destination campaigns have included integrated homepage takeovers on several Expedia sites, prominent ads at points of sale, dedicated microsites that give significant information to Expedia shoppers, and StorePoint Expandables, a new interactive advertising product that features rich content, such as embedded video, audio, interactive maps and imagery, to offer users deeper engagement within the ad so they get a stronger understanding about a destination. In addition, unlike other marketing partners, Expedia has the capability to develop deals with its transportation and accommodation suppliers surrounding a destination’s campaign to offer consumers greater travel options at competitive rates.

"Expedia Media Solutions has a unique ability to provide destinations with an unparalleled level of exposure to in-market travel consumers at all points of their planning lifecycle – a key reason DMOs choose to market with us. Many travelers come to the Expedia sites to research destinations, which can be front and center with relevant, insightful information during this prime decision making period," said Doug Miller, Global Vice President of Media Solutions for Expedia, Inc. "Our campaigns have proven to grow bookings for our destination partners and help shift share from competing destinations during both the peak travel times and the shoulder seasons."

Expedia Media Solutions offers global experience with destination partners around the world, from TurEspana and Malta Tourism Authority, to Mexico Tourism Board and Visit Jamaica. Current major partnerships include a first-time campaign for Egyptian Tourism Authority that will run on five international Expedia sites in the US, UK, Germany, France and Italy, a multi-market creative partnership with South African Tourism, and a three-year contract with Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions. DMOs in Puerto Rico, Barbados and Palm Springs also recently signed partnerships signed with Expedia Media Solutions.

Expedia’s work with South Africa Tourism includes a fully integrated campaign called the Ultimate Experience that provides a dynamic blend of content from South Africa Tourism and TripAdvisor®, giving the user comprehensive travel information to help plan the perfect trip. The Ultimate Experience hub focuses on three key themes: adventure and wildlife, culture and nature, and entertainment and leisure. Each tab features TripAdvisor’s top-rated attractions, photos, videos, and exciting content about South Africa.

Following two years of collaboration with Expedia Media Solutions, the recently-signed three-year partnership with the Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions focuses on increasing visitor numbers to Holland and driving awareness of secondary destinations in the Netherlands. Expedia Media Solutions will serve as the exclusive OTA partner for their City Breaks and Cool Breaks campaigns until 2012, which will run on nine points of sale that include Expedia sites in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Belgium and sites in Norway, Sweden and Denmark.

"We find that the Expedia marketing partnership allows us to emotively interact with customers to encourage a visit to Holland during the trip planning cycle," said van der Feltz. "Expedia has also impressively demonstrated an ability to convert those interested travelers into actual Holland visitors. It is this combination of inspiration, engagement and conversion that has been key in aiding our strategy of maintaining and strengthening market share."

Expedia also serves  as a key marketing partner for destinations in North America. In January Expedia Media Solutions was named Partner of the Year by the San Diego Conventions & Visitors Bureau and was recognized as a top advertising platform and major sales channel for San Diego hotels. Expedia’s partnership with San Diego CVB first began in 2007 as a strategic initiative to increase the city’s room night bookings and shift share from competitive destinations. In 2009 the organization increased its partnership level with Expedia to create larger, more integrated campaigns.

"As a promotion partner, Expedia not only grew San Diego’s room nights year-over-year by 26 percent, but in these tough economic times they were able to grow revenue by 11 percent – exceeding ROI estimates and generating a significant return on investment of 125 to 1," said Joe Terzi, President and CEO of the San Diego CVB. "Serving many different consumer segments-from families booking a summer vacation to individuals arranging a quick weekend getaway-Expedia gives us a highly effective way to share San Diego’s message to a broad audience of travel shoppers and potential visitors."

In addition to its work with destination organizations, Expedia Media Solutions offers numerous options for travel and non-travel brands to reach shoppers on Expedia’s global online travel marketplace, including StorePoint Expandables, the latest product launched in September 2009 that combines rich media functionality with engaging microsite content. Other solutions include PassportAds, an offering that targets users after they leave the Expedia sites; TravelAds, a bid for placement product for hotel suppliers; banner ads; sponsorship opportunities; promotional activities; and placement in Theme Stores, among others.

This complete collection of solutions represents the company’s efforts to help its travel suppliers and advertising partners reach the 64 million worldwide monthly unique visitors that visit  Expedia, Inc. Web sites.

Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.