Fans of the Emmy Award-winning PBS program Downton Abbey will now see an episodic series of commercials from Viking Cruises during the show this August. The eight commercials will individually display a single aspect of the things that Viking Cruises passengers can expect when going out to sea with the brand. By putting the attention on specific cruise attributes, Viking is taking a different approach with this campaign by throwing out the normal methods of general cruise advertising and replacing it with specificity.
While we have all seen a number of cruise commercials that show laughing families, people lying in the sun on a deck chair or the inevitable water slide, Viking's commercials should be a welcome departure for what we’re used to. The eight commercials—which have been deemed "The World of Viking”—will each launch during the new episodes of Downton Abbey, and will cover topics that prospective passengers may question.
According to Viking Cruises and in order of their planned appearances on the hit PBS show (which Viking has been a sponsor of since 2011), the ads have individual titles that refer to their specified topics: Discovery, Masterpieces, Great Performances, Privileged Access, Culinary Journey, Through New Eyes, Longships, and Discovery Finale.
In addition to the television campaign, Viking Cruises also provides guests with an opportunity for a closed-doors visit to Highclere Castle. This behind-the-scenes look at the setting of Downton Abbey is an optional extension available on either Viking's Cities of Lights or Paris & the Heart of Normandy cruises. This extension offers passengers a three-night visit to the castle and English countryside, giving them a special look at the history and beauty of the castle.
Whether or not the ad campaign works as well as Viking hopes, the cruise extension sounds like a great opportunity for anyone, including people who don't watch Downton Abbey.