Canada uses Google to encourage tourists off the beaten track

Canada uses Google to encourage tourists off the beaten track

The Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) and DDB Canada (the CTC’s agency of record) today unveiled an innovative approach to online advertising: the result of a collaboration with Google Maps and Street View that virtually transports travelers onto real Canadian city streets with the simple click of a mouse. This unique DoubleClick Rich Media ad highlights key places and experiences in Canada, and is part of a much larger, integrated campaign currently running in key European markets. To view an example of these ads, visit:

“With the vast majority of people researching their travel online, the objective of these online ads was to give people a real and authentic glimpse of Canada, bringing our city streets directly to interested travelers by harnessing the power of Google Maps and Street View,” said Ernst Flach, Executive Director of Global Marketing for the CTC.

DDB Canada contacted Google with the idea of making Google Maps and Street View work directly within an online ad so that travelers could not only locate a destination on a map, but could also explore things to see and do at each location.

“What makes this execution so effective is that it utilizes a technology that the target audience already uses to research destinations, but it introduces this technology within a new context to offer inspiration in a whole new way,” said Cosmo Campbell, Creative Director, DDB Canada. “It was a great experience collaborating with Google – discovering new ways to adapt their technology to work in unexpected places.”

Each online execution ends by directing travelers to additional location-specific information on the Keep Exploringcampaign site where they can further explore what each destination has to offer, including special deals on partner sites. The campaign site also allows travelers to share information with their social networks, provide comments, and ask questions about each destination.


Broadcast, print, QR codes and social media cultivation also direct travelers to the Keep Exploring site and round out this highly integrated campaign.

The campaign is currently running in Germany, France and the U.K., with OMD Vancouver in association with OMD International in London responsible for the media buy.