Which is the most well self-promoted country across the social world? You guessed right: Switzerland.
On November 2011, we posted on YDL an article talking about Obermutten, a tiny Swiss village (79 inhabitants) which prints and displays the profile pictures of its Facebook fans around town. Currently the little village’s Facebook page has over 17,000 fans and counting.
The campaign was a real success: more than 60 million people worldwide have now heard of Obermutten and traffic to its website is up 250%. This video explains the impact of the Obermutten Facebook campaign:
Today I will talk about Switzerland and social media again, as they are doing very well. And also because the promotion of tourism via social media is evolving at a very fast pace: just think about Conflict of Pinterest – a Pinterest and Twitter based campaign created by the UK based travel agency First Choice.
All the countries in the world has been put into a crowdsourced competition, to determine which one is the “most beautiful” according to social media users… with very interesting results!
Back to Switzerland, in 2009 the local tourist offices launched on YouTube the campaign ‘We do whatever it takes to make your holidays perfect’. The protagonists are two Swiss dairy farmers, Sebi and Paul, who do whatever it takes to make your experience in their country perfect.
In the 2010 campaign, Sebi and Paul worked hard again in order to make Switzerland an ideal place for tourists.
I know, the majority thinks ‘mountains’, ‘chocolate’ or ‘banks’ when someone says ‘Switzerland’… but trust me, Switzerland is much more than this!
That’s what the two old farmers wanted to show, therefore they came back in 2011 to continue the campaign. In the video they visit Geneva and have great time finding out there are fancy restaurants, casinos, nightclubs and hot lingerie shops. It’s very funny to see Sebi and Paul discover new and exciting things – trying to fit in an international, fancy and cosmopolitan city.
After the (amazing) video series, the ‘alpine duo’ went so viral that the country’s tourism office decided to set up a whole online campaign. The title is quite self-explanatory: Holidays Without Internet, developed by agency Spillmann/Felser/Leo Burnett, was a contest to win a trip to somewhere in the Swiss mountains with no Internet or mobile reception.
The campaign was targeting ‘online addict’ and ‘Facebook junkie’, underlining how today people spend too much time online instead of enjoying the real beauty of the world.
Entering through Facebook Connect, users could see Sebi and Paul taking a look into their profiles, and commenting that they should take a break from their intense online life and spend more time with their ‘real’ friends.
As I mentioned on my last article on this blog – What’s behind anti-social media campaigns? – there quite a few companies and organisations that started inviting us to take a break from our “social” life. This campaign is another good example of this trend.
Also, we are talking about an anti-Facebook-addiction campaign that runs… on Facebook! This led to a short temporary block of the campaign by Facebook itself, and to a lot of local and international media coverage.
Here’s a video that shows the campaign, and tell us more about Holidays Without Internet’s results in terms of figures:
The country is getting ready for summer 2012: this year, Sebi and Paul are still the protagonists of the campaign where they claim again to do everything for their guests to enjoy the season.
The new ad has just been released and the main topic is water (lakes, waterfalls, rivers, etc). In the video, the farmers prepare the landscape for the tourists by cutting grass, cleaning rivers and stones, giving to some San Bernardo dogs life jackets instead of the typical barrels… the protagonist even wax other farmers to become aerodynamic lifeguards!
In case you’re planning to visit the country, the Swiss tourism office just launched a free app called “MySwitzerland”, which provides valuable information to plan a holiday in the country. You can follow it on Twitter, together with other 6K+ followers.
The Swiss tourism office is using social networks and sense of humor to promote the country: they make fun of all its clichés, and they have been able to consistently and continuously use mascots – a strategy that usually belongs to traditional media (e.g. advertising characters).
I have to say I am a big fan of Sebi and Paul. But after you watched the videos, how can you not be?