Destination Expedia Group

#talentattraction #brand #website #video #social #hyperlocal

For the past nine years, Expedia Group Japan (EGJ) has attended the Boston Career Forum to engage and recruit Japanese students (fluent in Japanese & English) for their Market Associate Internship. It was expensive, but worked. Our challenge was to prove to senior management there was a better way, but with the finite target audience spread all over the world and brand awareness in Expedia in Japan almost non-existent, we had our work cut out for us. But, as you know, that’s the kind of challenge CA3 & Crunch (our media partner) love!

EGJ had already undertaken a huge amount of internal and external research before this project began, but it wasn’t happy reading. Brand awareness amongst target audience in Japan was extremely low, with only 5% of students aware they were a local employer. 79% of students said they would not apply; 21% may or may not. Sobering stuff.

On the plus side though, the research also highlighted what Japanese students truly wanted from an internship. They wanted a role that will give them a sense of achievement, with frequent training opportunities and a friendly, open culture. A good work-life balance is important (historically Japanese companies don’t offer this), as is the ability to ‘be myself’ in the workplace – they couldn’t have described Expedia Group better.

CA3 & Crunch work hand-in-hand on large projects like this, so while we developed a hugely compelling creative campaign (Destination Expedia Group), Crunch mined Big Data to build a clear profile of the target audience (identified as three core segments – students based in Tokyo, Regional Japanese universities and English speaking countries around the rest of world) and the best way to reach them.

Our final campaign tailored its messaging to suit each of these audiences, and involved a bi-lingual, multi-channel approach, supported by a dedicated campaign microsite full of intern-generated content. The programmatic media strategy utilised a suite of channels to reach students at different times and in different ways, and hyperlocal targeting was used to engage and attract Japanese students at key feeder universities and career fairs – including (of course) the Boston Career Forum.

Winner of the RMA for Recruitment Effectiveness (and the Grand Prix too!), Destination Expedia Group was a momentous success. Brand awareness amongst the identified target audiences increased massively with 8 million impressions over the life of the campaign, generating 70k clicks.

In Japan specifically, there were 3.23 million impressions helping to raise the profile of Expedia Group as a local employer. 480k of those impressions used hyperlocation to reach students at key feeder universities in Tokyo and the regions.

The campaign generated a total of 1,118 applications, at a cost of £32.66 per application, and a qualified applicant rate of 17% (3% above Expedia Groups global benchmark). We can also happily report that EGJ did not go to the Boston Careers Fair to recruit interns.