Erica Bray
A digital marketing pro with storytelling chops.
MARKETING-megaphone-reduced.jpg

Content Marketing

Branded journalism. Content marketing. Native Advertising. Whatever you want to call it ... this is my forte. I lead teams to conceive, produce and optimize programs that bridge business objectives with effective storytelling.

A few highlights are below.

"Featured Destination" Program

"Featured Destination" Program

Opportunity:
Strategically tap into the growing digital marketing budgets of tourism boards so that Travelzoo readers could be inspired to travel to these global destinations.

Solution:
-  Co-created a customizable digital media program for tourism boards that fused inspirational stories with tactical (ROI / cooperative) opportunities for partner hotels, airlines, cruises, tours and entertainment.
-  The digital syndication of these programs included a combination of targeted emails, social media, website placements and PR (ultimately a combination contingent on objectives and budget).
-  This was the first program of its kind for tourism board advertisers with both regional and global reach.

Result:
- Our division grew into a new, multimillion-dollar vertical business for Travelzoo.
- The tourism board business grew more than 100% year over year for three years in a row, transforming into a consistent revenue stream for the company with repeat clients ... and amazing destination profiles for our readers.

"I Am" Video Series

Opportunity:
Elevate new “not-com” domain choices owned by Donuts Inc. (such as .coffee, .life, .today) as relevant, meaningful and effective with startup and small business communities.

Solution:
-  Developed a video series that spotlighted innovative businesses across the country using “not-com” domains to build their brands. The series fused company objectives with compelling human interest stories.
-  Executive produced (and reported/produced) in collaboration with a team of producers, videographers and editors.
-  Videos were digitally targeted to the entrepreneur, tech and small business communities.

Result:
-  Videos achieved more than 30 million views via digital syndication in less than two years, with a call to action that took users to a “not-com” domain registration page, increasing education, awareness and purchases.
-  Click here to watch the complete series on YouTube, which features businesses on domains as unique as .camp.coffee and .fitness.

 

MyRescue.dog / Petfinder Foundation Campaign

MyRescue.dog / Petfinder Foundation Campaign

Opportunity:
Promote the release of the .dog domain, a fun subject that could bring attention to the larger Donuts Inc. portfolio of “not-com” domains available to the public.

Solution:
-  Co-designed a month-long digital promotion pegged to the launch of the .dog domain, timed with National Dog Day on Aug. 25.
-  Partnered with Petfinder Foundation to create a .dog website (www.myrescue.dog) that celebrated rescue dogs.
-  Users could upload pictures of their rescue dogs and cast votes for their favorite. The dog with the most votes won $100,000 for the rescue organization or shelter of her choice.
-  Campaign received targeted syndication over social media and nationwide PR.
-  Baked into all messaging, editorial and creative: the celebration of new “not-com” domain portfolio, including .dog.

Result:
-  Registrations of .dog were among the highest of the year.
-  Awareness and engagement KPIs were through the roof: 1) Nearly 40,000 social media shares; 2) 550,000+ votes; 3) Average time spent on the website: 2:15 minutes.

YAHOO: Illinois Tourism Partnership

YAHOO: Illinois Tourism Partnership

Opportunity:
Illinois Tourism wanted to reach Yahoo Travel readers to inspire travel to the state ... but not just to Chicago.

Solution:
-  Collaborated with Yahoo Travel Editor-in-Chief on appropriate story angles and creative to promote Illinois to a global audience, to inspire travel to the state.
-  Produced a series of stories for this partnership based on several road trips and multiple interviews and consulted on social media targeting.

Result:
-  Content was syndicated across the Yahoo Travel website (14 million uniques monthly), including the Yahoo main page, and and social media channels, netting millions of clicks and even more impressions for Illinois Tourism.

"Wow Deal Destinations" Annual List

"Wow Deal Destinations" Annual List

Opportunity:
Create an annual “Best of” list that would: 
1) creatively inspire consumers to travel
2) stand out from other travel lists populating the Q4 calendar
3) align with Travelzoo’s mantra of the “travel deal”
4) elevate Travelzoo in the eyes of tourism board clients (current and prospective)
5) generate a PR splash for Travelzoo

Solution:
-  Launched the “Wow Deal Destinations” annual spread that highlighted the best destinations in which to find travel deals for the coming year, as predicted by Travelzoo editors.
-  Oversaw the internal curation and selection process; production of promotional website and editorial; tourism and travel partnership opportunities; and coordination with PR.

Result:
-  The editorially directed spread generated more than $1 million in media and publicity value each year, including appearances on the TODAY show and CNN.
-  The campaign continues to forge new tourism partnerships and strong ROI (and media) for participating travel clients.

Inc. + Fast Company: Native Content Program

Inc. + Fast Company: Native Content Program

Opportunity:
Advance the credibility of “not-com” domain choice, specifically the Donuts Inc. portfolio, by aligning with brands relevant to and respected by entrepreneur communities.

Solution:
-  Partnered with respected business publications such as Inc. and Fast Company to produce stories to integrate the “not-com” message into its stories.
-  Worked closely with editorial team to produce and syndicate a microsite hub that highlighted business stories and advice that included the Donuts Inc. message.

Result:
-  Produced more than 25 “custom content” stories in partnership with Inc. and Fast Company. This included regular email blasts and full-page print story.
-  All stories incorporated key messaging with call-to-action and were digitally syndicated with audience targeting. 
-  Articles (including Inc. hub) received more than 119,000 clicks.
The microsite hub remains live and continues to receive organic traffic; stories are still used in Donuts Inc. content marketing and sales efforts.

Name.Kitchen: consumer brand + channels

Name.Kitchen: consumer brand + channels

Opportunity:
Raise awareness and education of new “not-com” domain choices owned by Donuts Inc. (such as .coffee, .life, .today) with startup and small business communities.

Solution:
-  Launched a sub-brand for Donuts Inc. that became the B2C and B2B voice championing the “not-com” message to the small business and startup community: Name.kitchen.
-  Led a team in creating everything from scratch: website; social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram); YouTube channel; and aligning with appropriate digital syndication channels.
-  Managed staff, freelancers and agencies to produce content to support all syndication channels.

Result:
-  The microsite, social media channels and video syndication channels spread awareness and education of the “not-com” message with strategic storytelling, thought leadership and creativity.
-  The combined impression count exceeded 500 million in less than two years, with a 67% VCR and CPCV of $0.04 (videos) and $0.75 CPC (articles / more than 30 seconds time spent).
-  All story pages included a link to a widget with the option to purchase a “not-com” domain, which saw increased activity YOY.

  Opportunity:  - The parent company of Orbitz (Expedia) acquired HomeAway, a vacation rental competitor of Airbnb. By late 2016, Orbitz editors wanted to find a way to promote the new, unique inventory now available to book on the Orbitz site -- as most people only associate Orbitz with offering traditional hotel rooms.   Solution:  - Worked with editor to launch the "7 Incredible ..." series, which would promote and educate users to the most unique categories of accommodation available on Orbitz. - Worked with Orbitz and HomeAway to get a robust data pulls for all new inventory by geography, accommodation category, star rating, etc. This data serves as a baseline against additional research to uncover editorially relevant categories and the best properties (and photography) to highlight, aligned with audience interests and geography.   Result:  - These stories are scaleable and multipurpose, raising awareness to a host of new offerings. - Stories appear on the Orbitz blog, social media and email messaging, as well as served up against keyword and destination searches on the Orbitz website. (No hard data to share yet.)

Opportunity:
- The parent company of Orbitz (Expedia) acquired HomeAway, a vacation rental competitor of Airbnb. By late 2016, Orbitz editors wanted to find a way to promote the new, unique inventory now available to book on the Orbitz site -- as most people only associate Orbitz with offering traditional hotel rooms.

Solution:
- Worked with editor to launch the "7 Incredible ..." series, which would promote and educate users to the most unique categories of accommodation available on Orbitz.
- Worked with Orbitz and HomeAway to get a robust data pulls for all new inventory by geography, accommodation category, star rating, etc. This data serves as a baseline against additional research to uncover editorially relevant categories and the best properties (and photography) to highlight, aligned with audience interests and geography.

Result:
- These stories are scaleable and multipurpose, raising awareness to a host of new offerings.
- Stories appear on the Orbitz blog, social media and email messaging, as well as served up against keyword and destination searches on the Orbitz website. (No hard data to share yet.)