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The launch of Marella Voyager (Bon Voyager)

Entered in Launch Campaign


In May 2023 we launched Marella Voyager as part of a strategic vision to continually modernise and grow our fleet of cruise ships. It was our first ship launch in four years, and so we wanted to mark the occasion in style. We celebrated golden hour as the sun finally set on the dark days of the pandemic. It was our flag in the sand to say we’re back, a celebration of both Marella’s and the cruise industry’s return to a place in the sun.

The primary objective behind the digital marketing strategy was to generate significant noise around the launch, in doing so increasing brand awareness. In a competitive industry we set about re-imagining our communications and marketing approach; maximising social media activations and focusing on our customer centric brand qualities, and engaged communities, to generate significant cut through on an organic level:

Our social media campaign objectives were:


In preparation for the launch of Marella Voyager, our small team set about holding numerous brainstorms and analysing the competition to develop an in-depth strategy, focusing on creating innovative content ideas that would both excite and inform.

Every touch point was carefully considered, and as a result the launch campaign was split into two phases. The first phase was targeted strategically around generating buzz and anticipation, with the social team sharing behind the scenes glimpses of the ship’s transformational progress.

Additionally, bucking the industry trend of inviting celebrities to be the Godmothers of our new ship, we focused on what our customers love about a Marella cruise, our friendly service. This isn’t a coincidence. It’s in our DNA. We’re a family. For that reason, we choose long-standing, loyal family members to christen our ship – our Chief Purser and Senior Destinations Services Operations Manager, who have racked-up around 40 years’ service between them!

The second phased moved into the physical launch, where we welcomed Marella Voyager into our fleet with the party of a lifetime. To amplify awareness. we invited a big-name headline act – Becky Hill, along with our glamorous godmothers, and sky full of stars.

The brand also invited cruise and travel media onboard for event, so that they could experience the product and help maximise earned media opportunities.

On social we again looked to activate our best asset, Marella Cruises loyal customers. We took a reactive approach, taking cues from our community about what new venues and experiences they wanted to see across our socials. This helped to drive reach, sentiment, and engagement.

For example, we produced:


The launch campaign was a huge success – our biggest and best yet! The results speak for themselves with a total of 260 pieces of media mentioning Marella Voyager between 30th May – 30th September. Including 5 national print reviews and 35 pieces of regional coverage about Becky Hill.

Meanwhile, on social media the KPI’s set were dramatically exceeded with the overall campaign reach totally over 4.3 million oranically. Organic engagements topped 350,00 in total, with every single piece of content exceeding the industry standard reach engagement rate (1.39%). For example, our sizzle reel had a reach engagement rate of 17.75% on Facebook and 4.33% on Instagram. Meanwhile, two pieces of content organically reached over 1 million each.

Taking a community first approach to the campaign also drove fantastic positive sentiment, which maintained at 99% across our owned channels.

The campaign also drove a notable web search uplift, with organic traffic up by +14.9% and visits to the Marella Voyager ship page increasing by over 111% WoW.


Video for The launch of Marella Voyager (Bon Voyager)

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Marella Cruises


Entry Credits