La Perle is Dubai’s first resident show, housed in a purpose-built 1,200 seat aqua-theatre starring 65 of the world’s top acrobatic performers – created by legendary Cirque du Soleil Artistic Director Franco Dragone. Five years in the making, La Perle needed to sell-out several months’ worth of tickets pre-launch in September 2017. Yet none of the normal creative assets were available. No photos or film – as the top-secret rehearsals were still underway.
The campaign converted this massive obstacle into an advantage. It turned the mystery of the show into a mythology – like all the world’s great stories – one built around the pearl fishers who founded the city of Dubai. A myth brought to life by a media strategy that would touch everyone in the city, supported by programmatic media buying leading directly to ticket sales.
Starting with an outdoor domination along Dubai’s main highway and contextual display on entertainment and lifestyle sites, the pre-launch myth building started a buzz around the city. Dragone himself was interviewed by the regional press and magazines. Short-form social videos were released of the set designs, the rehearsals and the performers themselves. Radio stations ran promotions for tickets.
Top local influencers received exclusive content and invitations to the gala launch.
The marketing plan delivered with more efficiency every day. Integrating with responsive display media, La Perle’s performance campaign (a combination of online video, social, SEM, SEO and programmatic re-targeting) resulted in over 500,000 unique online users visiting the site and 120,000 visitors in the first four months. Powered by always-on data-driven optimisation, the campaign achieved a conversion rate 123% higher than the category average with a 700% ROI. Proving that marketing can still make myths – and myths make magic.