Caledonian MacBrayne | Direct Mail

Go West with CalMac 

In 2009, uncertainty over the global economy was beginning to bite and the weakness of Sterling made holidaying abroad significantly more expensive. In addition, the airline industry had been quick to respond with a glut of cheap flights. Amidst this uncertainty, CalMac recognised the need for a more targeted Direct Mail campaign and we were briefed to develop and produce this. We had already produced Direct Mail for CalMac in 2008 as we had designed and developed a communication piece that promoted the launch of CalMac Connects. This was mailed to 50,000 households and generated new bookings revenue of £94,691, from a spend of around £34,000. 

For the spring 2009 Direct Mail campaign, we approached it from an entirely new angle. First of all we gave our spring Direct Mail piece the title Go West.

The project investment of £34,000 on Go West with CalMac paid back over four times with £138,414 of new bookings revenue generated. 1,626 new bookings were made which equated to a conversion rate of 3.2%. The percentage of CalMac passengers citing ‘holiday/short break’ as their reason for travelling rose from an average of 40% to 68%. As bookings increased, so too did the onboard sales of food, drink, magazines/newspapers, books and souvenirs.


Last of the summer unwind

Following on from the success of the previous Go West with CalMac Direct Mail, we were briefed to create a Direct Mail piece that would encourage visitors to the islands during the late summer and autumn period of 2011.

Our creative proposal focuses on the west coast islands being the perfect place to visit in late summer to experience deserted beaches, peaceful walks and stunning landscapes and seascapes. We developed the creative concept around our Last
of the summer unwind
title and the copy content and photographic images communicate all the benefits of travelling to the islands at this time. We also feature the services and facilities available on the ferries and the choice of tickets available, ranging from a standard return ticket to CalMac’s range of Island Rover and Hopscotch tickets. Recipients were also able to enter a competition to win prizes, including free ferry travel and hampers containing products and produce from Scotland’s west coast islands. 

Last of the summer unwind was mailed to a 50,000 database and the response levels to the competition have been excellent at over 9%. The prize-winners are delighted with their prizes and we look forward to analysing how many of the recipients have visited or are intending to visit the Hebridean and Clyde islands.