Increasing demand for one of NZ’s most famous tourism trailblazers.
Quirky, colourful and with an appetite for the unusual, Andrew Akers invented downhill ball rolling in Rotorua in the mid-nineties. ZORB was born soon after, taking shape as a unique tourism experience in Rotorua’s Ngongotaha Valley and later being set up as a franchise internationally; its bizarre uniqueness as an activity gaining notoriety all over the world.
Maverick Digital began working with the ZORB team under the OGO brand name, supporting them to firstly implement best practice across the board in the digital space, and then helping the brand to really push the boundaries of what’s possible online.
A multi-platform, holistic digital strategy – covering everything from SEO optimization to tactical paid media, conversion path improvements, EDM guidance and data-driven campaign segmentation – has seen ZORB see record levels of online sales growth ever since.
+46% increase in organic traffic
+61% increase in online revenue
When an acquisition inspires a completely new approach to digital
Driving awareness and demand for the OGO brand within paid media was, initially, somewhat of a challenge when the bulk of the target audiences knew the experience itself as ZORB (and as a verb, not a noun!) To combat this, we undertook clever brand campaign activity that focused on highlighting what made OGO a different experience, without infringing on specific legal vernacular rules that were in place.
When OGO bought out ZORB, we focused on completely overhauling all consumer facing digital activity. The brand no longer had a direct competitor, and as such, we were able to move higher up the funnel with campaign activity.
Focusing on demand creation for downhill ball rolling – rather than trying to inspire people to choose one operator over another – is where ZORB’s digital strategy has really come in to its own in terms of direct sales growth.
Maverick has become an invaluable extension to our sales team – they just get us! We were a bit sceptical and wary when we first began dabbling with digital marketing but now 18 months on the results are undeniable and continuing to grow every month. Alex and the team have been cool, calm and collected throughout all the curve balls we have thrown at them including a full re-brand while challenging us to continue to push the boundaries.
Moving to full-funnel activation
Right place, right time is our mantra for creating and converting demand for the ZORB offering. We’ve worked hard to implement clever SEO practices across the board – including implementation of the Topic Cluster approach to content creation – with ZORB being rewarded with a 46% increase in organic traffic in 2019, compared to YOY.
This increase in organic visibility has maintained ZORB’s positioning as an NZ Must-Do, driving awareness overseas before international visitors have even left their home country. This is reflected in ZORB enjoying one of the longest booking lead times across all of Maverick’s clients. Audiences are committed to the ZORB experience well ahead of time, removing the chance for them to get distracted by other activities before they reach Rotorua.
We layer Zorb’s databases within social advertising, creating lookalike audiences and A/B testing messaging targeted at different segments, at different times in the travel research and booking process.
While FIT activity remains our core focus, we also support ZORB with targeting other market segments, including corporate activity and event-focused promotions.
In 2019, ZORB was named the Small Business Operator of the Year by NZ’s Tourism Export Council – something that recognizes the company’s commitment to a truly unique, memorable and special visitor experience.
While ZORB’s sales growth and market dominance is fantastic to play a part in delivering, it’s often the people associated with a company that really cements our passion for what we do. The energy, enthusiasm and blue-sky approach of Anna, Melissa, Charlotte – and the wider ZORB team – makes us excited for what the future holds in the digital space for this seriously special brand and group of people.