Helen Whitley | Business Director

Haven Holidays own and operate 38 award-winning family holiday parks throughout England, Scotland and Wales. However, despite being Britain’s largest provider of domestic holidays, research had highlighted a decline in non-customer consideration that posed a risk to future demand for Haven Holidays core offering.

Quite the challenge

While consideration was falling, business growth targets were increasing. Therefore, the Bourne Leisure-owned company tasked MediaCom with not only driving new people into their holiday homes, but attracting more of the right people.

With a significant portion of the overall marketing budget needing to be delivered through search channels, the challenge was to execute a consumer-centric integrated PPC and SEO strategy that could work alongside ATL channels to inspire more new people to consider booking a holiday with Haven. All whilst growing search driven revenue by +5% YoY, with the same search budget as 2016.

A three-pronged approach

Our expert SEO and PPC analysts set about producing a strategy that could deliver right across the holiday planning & booking journey. First, this prioritised reducing the reliance on brand keywords. Our team paused brand activity for anyone who had visited the Haven website within the previous 180 days, allowing organic results to capture returning users.

With budget freed up from brand PPC, we implemented a location strategy for generic search terms. This was executed through geo-targeting broad generics terms, focus on increasing visibility on key regional terms and using PPC data to identify key areas for organic optimisation. We layered in technology to increase efficiencies; with an intent-based RLSA (remarketing lists for search ads) and ROI bidding scripts.

Finally, we engaged in a collaborative identification & testing approach for our target keywords further up the funnel – using PPC to test effectiveness, then help focus & prioritise SEO optimisation.

Surpassing expectations and objectives

Collaboration, strategic-thinking and client bravery paid off. The integrated PPC & SEO strategy not only hit our 5% target but surpassed it by a further 2%. All for the same combined search budget used in 2016.

As we expected, reliance on brand PPC terms dropped significantly. In fact, while brand terms accounted for 61% of total PPC spend in 2016, in 2017 it only accounted for 36%! And this still continues to decline today.

It’s fair to say that our client was very happy with the execution of our strategy:

“Our Search marketing model had been successful, but working with our agency we knew a fresh approach was needed if we were to continue to see year on year gains. This campaign delivered against our objectives in spades. Marketing mix modelling undertaken since then has cemented the strategy as the right one for Haven, and we’re working closely with MediaCom in Leeds to see how we can push it further in 2018!” said Sarah Chapman, Head of Sales & Marketing Haven Holidays.