Bing Travel partners with NFL star Dhani Jones — fumble or success?
Does it fumble the celebrity partnership or do an effective job?
The NFL star, who co-authored the book, The Sportsman: Unexpected Lessons from an Around-the-World Sports Odyssey, provided Bing Travel with his 10 Favorite Places (from Russia to New Zealand) and Travel Wish List (Israel, Turkey, Philippines etc.), and submitted to a Q&A: Traveling the World with Dhani Jones.
The 10 Favorite Places slideshow has a social media tie-in. You can add one or all of the 10 destinations to the Bing Travel Wish List on Facebook app.
Then there’s a three-part series of YouTube videos, Travel Tips with Dhani Jones, replete with some nice destination clips. For example, here’s part one:
Uploaded to YouTube some time July 19, part one had three views as of this writing.
As outlined in Bing’s Travel blog, Bing then gets highly self-promotional.
“We asked Dhani to share his favoirte Bing Travel tools that can help you make your travel dreams into a reality…” according to the blog.
Paraphrasing the linebacker, these are Jones’ favorite Bing Travel tools:
- Searching on Bing (“Stop searching and start finding”)
- Bing’s Price Predictor,
- Bing’s hotel rate indicator, and
- Connecting to Bing through Facebook to see which friends live in a particular destination.
A very convenient and not-so-original list.
So, it’s a trendy marketing strategy for a company to partner with a celebrity and to use that person’s renown to drive traffic.
Bing’s effort with Jones on the surface has all of the seemingly required efforts — a celebrity name, a destination slide show, video clips with Jones on YouTube featuring inspiring destination images, and integration with a Bing Facebook app.
How good — or bad — a job has Bing Travel done so far with its Dhani Jones partnership?
Is it a model for other travel companies to follow or are there some shortcomings?
Dennis Schaal was North American editor for Tnooz.