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Spur adventure with cracking creative

The verdict is that both performed strongly for each brand. One of the highest scoring images drove Cook Islands’ brand affinity, wishes-to-visit and searches for more information. For Traveller.com.au, strong imagery and a single call to action grew the brand while also achieving one of the highest scores for “searching online for more information”.

Cook Islands

Vibrant colours and “Cook Islands” stand out in this creative. A look into further detail sees a description of the activities the holidaymaker could enjoy there. It also features a one way flight price at $405 with Air New Zealand. In terms of call-to-action, the creative displays www.cookislands.travel and airnewzealand.com.au with the suggestion one could also visit a travel agent to book.


This advertisement is especially minimalistic, with an engaging image of a beach and the headline “The dreams continue” as the key motivators, along with Traveller.com.au and a longer form description of the benefits of the site – “Dream. Research. Plan. At Traveller.com.au, you’ll find the inspiration to make your next holiday a reality”

Strategic RoleMap

Six strategic advertising roles of newspapers have been validated both qualitatively and quantitatively by NewsMediaWorks, resulting in the creation of RoleMap. 

On the affinity metric of “gives me a good feeling about the brand” (Cook Islands 37 per cent and Traveller.com.au 36 per cent), both ads were in the Top 10 per cent of performances across the 400 advertisements tested over the years. At 28 per cent and 20 per cent respectively, they also significantly outperformed the average for all newspaper ads on “encourages me to think differently about the brand.”

Both ads performed largely to norm on other strategic metrics.


Newspapers are recognised as an effective medium for delivering a Call to Action. ActionMap, another proprietary newspaper metric, expands on this strategic role to provide an understanding of the types of action a newspaper ad inspires. 

Both ads performed strongly on prompting readers to find out more information. For Cook Islands, Searching on-line (27 per cent), Visiting a store (24 per cent), Making a phone call (8 per cent) and Tearing out the ad (10 per cent) were all more than double the benchmarks for the average newspaper ad.

Respondents clearly illustrated the advert motivates on call-to-action metrics.

  • “The photography is just stunning, beautiful and makes you want to jump on a plane and go to the Cook Islands immediately!”
  • “I would not have considered unless I had seen the ad, and now I would like to find out more about the deal.”

Traveller.com.au sought to drive on-line searches of readers. The ad not only achieved this but with 29 per cent saying they would search on-line for more information, the advertiser achieved just about the highest score across 400 tested advertisements – although not that all of them sought to drive that same outcome. Traveller.com.au also significantly outperformed the benchmark on Share the information on-line (11 per cent) and Tearing out the ad (12 per cent).

Respondents illustrated how the advertisement prompts research, the search for inspiration and visits to the Traveller.com.au site in particular:

  • “Newspapers help in researching holidays.”
  • “It catches the eye with the image then doesn’t overload with information, but invites the reader to search for more.”
  • “I have never heard of this site, so it looks good and I would probably look into it when thinking about a holiday.”

Brand Perceptions

Both ads performed strongly on the three metrics for brand equity. The chart above shows that Cook Islands performed significantly above the norm on familiarity/understanding, appropriate and different. Although less so for familiarity, Traveller.com.au was every bit as strong on these metrics.

Creative Diagnostics

This NewsMediaWorks’ proprietary newspaper metric, provides a set of creative diagnostics unique to the attributes of newspaper advertising.  They have been developed to help identify areas for improvement where results across other brand and advertising measures may require further analysis and interrogation.

Cook Islands delivered strongly on every metric for Creative diagnostics. Most notably, “a great photo/image” (62 per cent) was as high as any newspaper advert tested over the years – the picture really impressed; it caught the eye and contributed to successes on brand and call-to-action metrics.

Although not at quite the same high level, Traveller.com.au also significantly outperformed benchmarks on Creative diagnostics. Cook Islands did, however, distinguish itself on “easy to see what’s on offer” and “highlights an important feature” – whereas Traveller.com.au met benchmarks on these two metrics, the Cook Islands ad significantly overperformed.

Respondent comments capture the strength of the imagery and the role it played in prompting calls to action:

  • “I thought the imagery was very beautiful and eye catching. Right away, I had to google the website and look at flights,” said a respondent about the Cook Islands ad.
  • “It made me think about places I would like to travel to and it made me consider searching their page for travel inspiration,” said a respondent about the Traveller.com.au ad.


Cook Islands

Great imagery generated real enthusiasm, making readers keen to be enjoying the Cook Islands. The simple and beautiful imagery built the brand while the advertised airfare helped convert this into people seeking further information. The ad doubled benchmark performance on “great imagery” and all three brand equity metrics, while “good feeling about the brand” was especially strong. It also more than doubled benchmarks for call-to-action metrics – seeking more information online, in store or with a phone call.


Strong imagery and a simple website address succeeded in growing the brand and driving readers online for more information. On the whole, the creative achieved the same successes as Cook Islands, only not quite as strongly. It performed strongly on “great imagery”, doubled benchmark performance on all three brand equity metrics and matched Cook Islands’ strong performance on “good feeling about the brand”. On call-to-action, despite no specific offer or price, the creative was also just as successful at prompting people to seek more information online.




  1. Research conducted online by Ipsos Connect. Fieldwork conducted July 2018. Sample aged 18+, based in Sydney, n = 103 for Traveller.com.au; based in Melbourne n=104 for Cook Islands. Significance tests conducted at 90 per cent confidence level.
  2. Full details of methodology, Role Map and Action Map available on www.newsmediaworks.com.au.
  3. Ads sourced from Savvy Media Monitoring (www.savvymm.com).


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