Case Study – WAYN-Joburg Tourism

Objectives of campaign

Joburg Tourism wanted to promote the City as a visitor destination by leveraging its hosting of the 2008 Miss World event.  Key to the success of the campaign was positioning Johannesburg as a vibrant, modern and dynamic cosmopolitan city, with great places to eat out, sites to visit and places to stay.  Joburg Tourism was also aware that they needed to address negative perceptions about the city.  The marketing brief also required a platform whereby future communications could be sent to members interested in finding out more about Miss World and ultimately in visiting Johannesburg.

The Strategy

Joburg Tourism decided to partner with the travel and lifestyle social networking community website (Where Are You Now) to develop a campaign that would both change perceptions and create endorsement for the City as a major international traveller destination. In a first for both parties, Johannesburg Tourism and WAYN devised an all embracing strategy to reach and engage WAYN members and visitors.  The campaign, which launched on November 17 using the strapline “Joburg – a world class African city”, celebrates the South African capital hosting Miss World and forthcoming international events like the Confederation Cup, Lions Tour and FIFA World Cup.

The Solution

The outcome was a multi-dimensional approached which engaged travellers, built user generated content, boosted site traffic and promoted brand awareness and as well as addressing negative perceptions.

By building a profile on WAYN, JoburgTourism was able to interact with a worldwide audience of 14 million people across 193 countries in a fun and dynamic way. Key elements included member’s surveys; a holiday prize competition; newsfeeds about Miss World, banner ads; a newsletter and internal communications promoting the JoburgTourism profile to WAYN’s huge community of members across the globe. 

WAYN was able to include specific components in the profile to help achieve the objectives including:

* A fully branded ‘clickable header’ driving traffic back to JoburgTourism site
* Personal intro to the profile and its content
* Miss World Competition content, all clickable to drive traffic back to the site
* Features on Johannesburg’s people, places and sites
* Photos and videos available for comment and rating by WAYN community
* Member comments

All new members joining WAYN were assigned the JoBurg Skin as their initial background to their personal profile.  Over 400,000 members acquired the Skin.

Two newsfeeds on the Miss World Competition were launched during the 7 week campaign, visible for 10 and 5 days each.


Results to date have been highly impressive. Over seven weeks from November 17 the pre and post survey showed a significant change to highly positive perceptions of the City and it becoming a top destination of choice. 

Mean while the increase in site traffic resulted in jumping 150,000 places*; advertising generated 9.5 m. impressions and nearly half a million WAYN members acquired the JoburgTourism skin to their profile and generated 650 new traveller reviews and opinions. 


Lindiwe Mahlangu, chief executive of Johannesburg Tourism, said: “These results have been outstanding and exceeded our very best expectations. We wanted to exploit and integrate the unique range of tools that the social media environment offers and deliver a real and tangible ROI. We set WAYN some tough objectives and I am delighted to say that they delivered on all fronts.  We are especially pleased about how well the social medium worked in persuading people to re-assess their perceptions about Johannesburg and how user generated content can be leveraged to endorse our messages.   

WAYN joint chief executive and founder, Jerome Touze, said: “Johannesburg is fortunate to have one of the most innovative and forward thinking DMO’s in the industry. Johannesburg Tourism has demonstrated how imaginative use of social media such as WAYN can go way beyond simple brand awareness and how an integrated strategy can be used to deliver both marketing and sales objectives.  Through their work Johannesburg Tourism is well on its way to placing South Africa’s capital on the premiere list of must visit destinations.  This is a very exciting partnership and we look forward to developing more integrated and bespoke campaigns for Johannesburg as a world class destination.”

More information:

* Joburg Tourism

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