Many people see Europe as a continent divided. When a major football competition like UEFA EURO 2020 rolls around, tensions can run high and historical rivalries come to the forefront. However, while there’s always a high level of enthusiastic banter among European football supporters, those rivalries stay on the pitch. But while any brand can make that statement, only Booking.com can prove it. How? With their data.
As the Official Accommodation Partner of UEFA EURO 2020, the Booking.com team wanted to prove that travel opens minds and changes preconceived notions surrounding other nations, even those who we consider rivals. And what better scenario to put this theory to the test than the biggest sports competition between European nations, and the first UEFA EURO tournament in history to take place in 11 different venues across the continent.
In collaboration with creative agency Officer & Gentleman, the team studied the data regarding all the competing nations and analysed the relationships between them when it comes to travel by looking at the number of trips, scores, reviews and endorsements that travellers from each one of the countries left on the site after their trips within Europe. The results were surprising, because they revealed that the countries that are considered the biggest 'rivals' are, in many cases, actually each other’s biggest fans - demonstrating that something as rational as data can reveal powerful emotional insights which, when put into context, shed a new light on rivalry between football fans from different European nations.
We’re all familiar with some of the biggest rivalries in European football, but you might be surprised to learn just how good the relationships between these nations are when we take a look at their travel data:
⦁ France is a favourite destination for German travellers, who rate their trips with an average of 8.3.
⦁ Belgians rate their Dutch hosts as “Very Good” with an average score of 8.3.
⦁ Italy is a favourite destination for Spanish travellers, who rate their visits with an average (8.5).
⦁ England is the number one destination for Scottish travellers.
⦁ The average rating by European travellers within the continent is “Fabulous”.8.8
⦁ “Love” appears in 1.4 million reviews by Europeans travelling within Europe.
⦁ "Friendly” has been mentioned over 2.5 million times in reviews
⦁ London is the most visited capital by European travellers.
⦁ 62% of European football fans have travelled to enjoy the beautiful game.
This creative platform was brought to life in the form of a TV/online spot, bumpers, social assets and YouTube pre-rolls, amongst other formats such as in-stadium and fan-zone screens and print.
The creative platform has been brought to life with an advert featuring a series of scenes shot in different parts of Europe combined with some of the most iconic moments in the history of the tournament. In it, the brand shows how football plays a relevant role in our trips: not just as something we share in common with Europeans, but also the main reason why many of us travel and discover other countries and their people. And what better example of this that the EURO: an event where people from different nations, even in difficult times like these, can come together to celebrate their passion for the beautiful game.
The spot also uses data-backed conclusions to support the message, showing the pivotal role of the brand in proving the positive statement that closes out the ad: They say we’re rivals. We know we’re friends.
The spot was produced by Caviar Brussels and directed by Thomas Ralph.