Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Case Study

Paid Search can be a powerful marketing tool.

The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is a colorful, exciting part of our nation’s history. It has been in continuous operation for 128 years, carrying passengers behind vintage steam locomotives and rolling stock indigenous to the line. People come from all over the world to relive the sights and sounds of yesteryear on board the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad.

For the past three years, the company has been working with WSP to make sure that potential visitors can easily learn about this historic destination through a successful and growing Paid Search program. What started out as an experiment in brand new media for Durango has turned into a core component of its comprehensive marketing strategy.

Some highlights:

Testing Mobile: Early spring 2011 launched mobile ads, broken out by tablets and all other mobile devices. Results: 300% ROAS return on ad spend

Reaching International Visitors: In May 2011 launched a small campaign to serve ads in theUK,France, Netherland andGermany. Results: 2800% ROAS

Remarketing: Tagging for abandoned carts has been another successful element of the Durango paid search program. Results: 1300% ROAS

Not only has the Durango team become strong PPC advocates, but Durango’s management company, American Heritage Railways is now adding two more railroads to our PPC program in Search, Social and Mobile: The Great Smokey Mountains Railroad established in 1880, and The Texas State Railroad established in 1881. With year-round experiences awaiting travelers, including fall foliage trips, the “Polar Express,” multifaceted summer excursions for families and more, these exciting destinations have so much to offer – and we are pleased to play a part in their ongoing success.

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