Cathay Pacific tunes into Malaysian market with the ‘melody of travel’

Hong Kong-based airline Cathay Pacific is targeting Malaysian travellers in a new campaign aimed at capturing ‘The Sounds of Travel’.

The airline recently stepped up its subsidiary brand Cathay Dragon’s presence in Malaysia, increasing its number of flights to Kuala Lumpur to four, in addition to 10 weekly flights to Penang and five to Kota Kinabalu.

To capitalise on this expansion, the brand and its agency-of-record McCann Worldgroup created an ad with a theme tune composed entirely from sounds recorded when travelling around the Asia-Pacific region. These sounds included street food cooking in Osaka, crossing a busy street in downtown Hong Kong and attending a bamboo cutting ceremony in Kyoto.

These sounds were recorded and re-mixed at the music studio into one song, which was then added to a two-minute video showing a woman visiting these locations. The campaign will run online until the end of August in Malaysia.

“Travel ads tend to communicate using strong, colourful and exciting visuals — come see the wonderful sights and shiny bright lights of this or that city. We travel with our eyes. But what if we said you could travel with your ears to the same place, and have a totally different experience?” said Sean Sim, CEO of McCann Worldgroup Malaysia.  “We felt there was an opportunity to give our travellers an interesting perspective, via sounds instead.”

Cathay Malaysia country manager Anna Choi added: “We went on an international journey to record thousands of audio moments and then crafted these sounds into one harmonious blend of rhythm and melody. We hope this will inspire our travellers to discover the beauty of travelling well from a whole new perspective.”

Cathay Pacific rebranded its largely China-directed carrier Cathay Dragon from Dragonair last November as part of an effort to create a more “seamless” experience between the two brands.


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