Following the record breaking press and social media coverage of Arvia’s amazing naming ceremony, the P&O Cruises team have been maximising the opportunity to encourage new guests to enjoy a P&O Cruises holiday.

As part of a variety of initiatives to support this, the brand has launched a new email ‘Welcome Journey’. We caught up with Beth Bond, Director of Guest Acquisition and Retention, to find out more…

Launched on 17 March to coincide with the incoming wave of will-be cruisers, this new industry-leading Welcome Journey uses cool interactivity and API technology to create a tailored experience for each new guest that joins us – to a level very few other brands are currently doing.

Not only does this allow us to get to know our guests better in the short term, personalising their welcome Journey to hone in on their perfect P&O Cruises holiday, but it also enables us to capture data for future campaigns, ensuring further communications deliver a seamless guest experience – which we hope means an uplift in conversion and reduced booking lead time.

“What kind of cool interactivity?” we hear you ask. It all starts with one simple question in the first of five emails – ‘Have you cruised before?’ If they have, we focus further content on why P&O Cruises is the right brand for them. If they haven’t, we ease them into the extensive world of cruising in general.

In our second email, we want to learn a bit more about the type of cruise our guest might be interested in. We provide a selection of holiday types – matched to the P&O Cruises website – which allows each guest to delve into the one that most inspires.

Now, here comes an extra clever part: from here on out, the imagery in our emails is tailored around what our guests have told us. Did they indicate a love of relaxed beach holidays? Then that’s what they’ll see.

Email three brings in a really awesome bit of interactivity. As mentioned, the world of cruising is extensive, and so is the breadth of experience P&O Cruises can offer. We found a neat way to condense all that information into a small space that guests could explore at their own leisure – word clouds, tailored to what our guests have told us so far. So, to go back to our relaxed beach holidays example, they see words like ‘Swimming’, ‘Sunbathing’ and ‘Cocktails’ – which they can expand to see further imagery and concise content specific to those interests.

Next up is email four – and this one is all about storytelling. We’ve created ‘build your own adventure’ interactivity, which uses evocative copy to really place our guests on board, with multiple choice options for what they’d like to do next. When they’ve eased through each simple scenario, we provide a summary of their day, with actions to explore specific venues or excursions related to their story!

And finally (for now), email five, leading on from email four with the subject line ‘Let’s make your story a reality’. This email is a summary of everything a guest has told us so far, with a reminder of our recommendations, and an invitation to explore something new if they’re still undecided.

Also in the pipeline is a sixth email – this will be a questionnaire for those who, after the first five communications, still haven’t booked. It will find out if there is anything we can do to tempt them over the line…

And there we go! A personalised, engaging and easy email journey to help our guests love their P&O Cruises holiday – all while collecting data which ensures future comms can do the same.”

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