With radio, Reflections bought within key markets, building relationships with DJs and embarking on giveaways, breakfast team campaigns, plus spots and dots media buying. With TV, it bought into peak times.
“In regional, you can afford to for a start, but it puts your brand among great company and gives you peak audiences. We supplemented with BVOD,” Chapman says. Activities also included major sponsorships, such as naming rights sponsorship of Surfest, a major World Surfing League program run out of Newcastle.
Complementing a regional-first media plan was a repositioning of the brand nationally to celebrate the outdoors more, distinguishing Reflections from other holiday park operator brands. Creative and messaging was underpinned by the consistent brand platform, ‘Life’s better outside’.
“What we found to be successful is you build the same kind of creative idea and creative platform, which should be laddering up to a higher, human truth. But the way you place and frame it in regional markets is different,” Chapman says. “That becomes more of a media discussion than a creative one. Sometimes, it’s about creative use of media.
“For instance, in the metro markets in radio, we might buy peak periods and traffic reports because we’re trying to get people on holidays. The great insight there is those consumers will be most frustrated with their busy city lives when they’re sitting in traffic. We wouldn’t do that in regional New South Wales. But you might serve really similar creative.”
Nuanced media placement doesn’t deliver a big ‘Tada’ moment in itself, Chapman admits. “The lack of severity of differences between audiences is where the story is,” he says.
“There’s an argument to say for certain products you might change creative. But just because someone in Bathurst isn’t driving a Ford Fiesta through the city streets, it doesn’t mean they don’t want to go and buy one to say something about the kind of person they are. In the same way a Mum on the Northern Beaches is not driving her Volvo in the Swiss Alps.
“We call it looking from the ‘outsight’, which is the opposite to an insight. Many brands frame up regional life in a really unauthentic way, and it misses big time.”
Brand health work, which Reflections segments down to Statistical Area Level 4, provides further insights granularity when connected with other data sources like coded sales data, shared with its media agency to feed into Helix and Mosaic tools for profiling and segmentation. Chapman also stresses brands should better ensure the mix of customers they’re talking to reflects Australia’s make-up. By overindexing on regional people it talks to, Reflections has statistically significant numbers to drill down into data more effectively.