How TUI used the scale of YouTube to unveil a new travel brand

January 2019

When the traditional British holiday provider Thomson rebranded to TUI, the result was a global brand capable of providing more flexibility, choice, and availability to customers. Aiming to “make TUI famous fast”, TUI and Mediacom worked closely with Google to develop a multi-format rebranding campaign on YouTube to generate awareness and demand at maximum pace.

About TUI UK

UK-based travel operator

Subsidiary of TUI Group

Headquarters in Luton, UK


Generate awareness of the new TUI brand

Create demand in key trading period


Ran YouTube campaign using multiple formats: Masthead, TrueView, Bumpers, and TrueView for Reach


Over 100% increase in brand searches from users exposed to TrueView

TrueView ads achieved 46% view-through rate versus 24% industry average

Bumper ads produced 28% average uplift in ad recall and 14% average uplift in awareness

TUI and Mediacom faced a huge hurdle. Before the rebrand, Thomson had 56% spontaneous awareness while TUI was at just 5%. Aimed at all adults in the UK, the “Hello TUI” launch campaign needed to be literally unmissable.

As a way of introducing TUI to the British public, achieving efficient reach, and driving demand in the brand’s key sales period, the team turned to a smart combination of YouTube formats.

Here's the approach they took:

  • A Masthead ad on YouTube ran shortly after launch to help make TUI the centre of attention. No other digital takeover could have offered an equivalent unique reach and been as visible to so many at so efficient an eCPM. 
  • To ensure the new brand maintained stature, scale, and impact in the weeks following the launch, TUI served TrueView ads, including the new TrueView for Reach format, to all adults on YouTube.
  • While TrueView helped sustain the awareness message, the team added Bumper ads to increase reach even further, remind the audience of the main ad, and drive brand recall through frequency.

Intelligent tactics produce a surge in awareness

The rebranding campaign was hugely successful, producing an over 100% increase in brand searches from users exposed to the TrueView activity.

TrueView for Reach was very efficient, coming out at two times cheaper than standard TrueView, while standard TrueView produced higher engagement – the 30-second ad achieved a 46% view-through rate versus the 24% industry average. Bumpers drove really strong ad recall, with an average uplift in ad recall of 28% and an average uplift in awareness of 14%.

The success of TUI’s rebranding campaign shows that YouTube can be a powerful platform for getting a message out quickly.

Key takeaways

Consider these guidelines to help your brand build fame fast:

  • Customise formats and messaging according to the user’s stage in the funnel. 
  • Measure the campaign’s impact beyond YouTube. TrueView can also help drive uplifts in search activity on Google.
  • Select suitable formats to tackle different KPIs. Gain reach with formats like Mastheads and TrueView for Reach, drive engagement with standard TrueView ads, and use Bumpers for ad recall.
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