The Sea is Calling: Why We Needed a New Marketing Concept

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I grew up in and around the water.  Ever since I was nine years old it’s been a big part of my life – lakes, whitewater, the ocean.  That’s why I’m really excited about our new marketing approach, because its message, “The Sea is Calling”, resonates with a basic human experience that is shared the world over.


From a business standpoint, I’m excited about our new marketing concept because it came from a truly global and comprehensive process.  All the people who have cruised with us know that to take something as big, broad and complex as a Royal Caribbean International cruise experience and try to create a marketing platform out of that which will resonate in the United States, China, Brazil and Europe is quite an undertaking.  We were hoping to be able to do that in a way that included an emotional pull because we understand that for many of our guests, especially the ones that like to write to me, there’s a real emotional tug there about how special it is, how great it makes people feel, how it ends up being one of the most important parts of their year. 

When we tested the concept of “the sea is calling” people and that Royal Caribbean is the way to answer that call, it didn’t matter where you were in the world, people just understood.  There is something about the basic human experience that caused people to feel this emotional pull that the sea would like for you to visit it again and there is no better way to do that than with us.

Of course it’s always challenging to come up with a simple, powerful, compelling concept that cuts through everything and stops somebody in their tracks.  We wanted to cut through the advertising clutter in the market place and make people think, “Yes, I am living a busy, stressed out life.  I never feel like I have enough time, but now that they said that to me, I would like to stop for a week and have that experience.  I would like to answer the call of the sea, and I’d like to do it with Royal Caribbean.”

You may be wondering why we need a new marketing approach.  We are interested in a new way of expressing ourselves because we’ve changed.  We’ve been a great brand since 1970; we’re a great brand today, that hasn’t changed.  What has changed, and I know that our crew feels this no matter which ship they are serving on every day, is that we’ve become a global vacation provider.  Our guest mix consists of people from all over the world.  TheUnited States is still our number one cruise market, but it’s approximately half of our business today.  For most of our history it was 90% of our business. We needed to develop a new way of attracting interest that reflected the brand we have become, while continuing to support the message that we are highly innovative, we do a lot of exciting things; we have incredible ships, incredible service and we visit amazing places.

You can get a glimpse of our new approach by clicking here.  If you’ve cruised with us, please consider clicking, the “Share Your Story” button at the bottom of the page and let us know how we answered it Royally.  In the meanwhile, we will continue to strive to “Answer it Royally” around the globe every day.

  • Ed Palmatier

    I was wondering if you have considered having your cruises include beverages and what the cost increase might be. Yes I mean alcohol. :)

    Thank you and look forward to taking out 6th RC cruise next year.

  • Bill Raffel

    Yes Adam, I can hear you NOW!

    I like the new concept and I understand how it will resonate worldwide.


  • tom nadolski

    how a bout a cruise ship parked rightout side a home and highway or office building as a suprise to everyday folks with busy busy frantic schedules and then being invited by specially clad folks from the ship to come on board for the experience of a lifetime, with shots of everything to be seen and do on board. could have a little fun or comedy mixed in as well. you know superbowl sun.

  • kristine rider

    I love the concept because it does call me, we try every year to answer that call!! It is the only time I don’t have to answer a phone though. I am an emergency 911 Dispatcher and look forward to leaving all forms of contact at home. Both my husband and I love Royal Caribbean and count down the days every year till the next. We have made so many friends and consider The Royal as our extended family; where we become royalty and are treated as such! We must and always will make time to visit. Again thank you

    • Adam

      We hope you answer the call, Kristine! Thanks for your comment.

  • Annette

    Hi Adam,
    Why is it that Royal no longer have any ships leave out of the west coast? Please bring one back here for those of us who need a 3 or 4 day vacation in our life. Sailed on the Monarch 3 times and loved it. Tried Carnival since they are still here but hated it and won’t use them again. PLEASE!!! come back to us. Thanks, Annette

    • Kate Myers

      I am a Diamond Plus member and are waiting for the CALL to tell me ships are coming back to the West Coast. I am still Loyal to Royal but would like to be able to cruise without a long airplane trip.

    • Adam

      Thanks for your interest. We are constantly reviewing our options for the West Coast but we currently do not have any specifics that we can share at this time.

  • Henry Wiebking

    “The sea is calling” is why I cruise.

    We just completed a cruise to the Caribbean on Enchantment of the Seas. It was our 8th cruise. Last year we did a similar cruise on Celebrity’s Mercury. FYI, the factors affecting our cruise choices are:

    1) We hate air travel. Bring the ship to US (eastern PA).
    2) We dislike the new monster ships. They remove the sea from the experience.
    3) Price is not a major factor in our choice of a cruise.
    4) We love lesser developed out-of-the way ports of call.

    The modern, mass-market, cruise industry runs on the economies of scale and the the concept that “price sells”. Unfortunately this has become a race to the bottom. The middle has disappeared because it couldn’t compete. That forces me to choose between incredible value or excessive luxury.

    I fantasize about cruises to the Caribbean out of the New York area on fast luxury liners. I’m old enough to remember the days when any ship worth its salt cruised at 30+ knots. (I saw the SS United States one night coming from Europe, in the middle of the Atlantic. She was doing 36 knots.)

    You guys are doing a great job. We like how you set up Labadee, Haiti. We enjoyed our stop in the Dominican Republic. Your people are well trained and motivated. It’s nice to see that you seek feedback. I realize that I am not your typical cruise traveler but for what it’s worth, these are my comments.

    • Adam

      We appreciate your comments and feedback, Henry. Thank you for stepping forward and expressing your opinions.

  • Dave Humphries

    Our Alaska Cruise this July was outstanding trip of a lifetime.With window in cabin the sea & secenry was always visible when not on deck. Loved the senery and having so much time at sea between ports. A shell has always been in our family room in sight & is a perfect symbol to call you back. 85 days till our Southern.Caribbean cruise & counting.The crew makes the difference towards an outstanding experience on board. Cheers D


    Outstanding concept. Only thing to add: When the final scene cuts to the ship, blow the ships horn. A really deep blast.


  • Heather B.

    After first sailing with you in march 2011, I was hooked. While it was my first cruise on Royal, it was my 5th time cruising but my hubby’s 1st cruise. We had the pleasure of sailing on Voyager of the Seas and had a great balcony cabin. Due to my great experience, I selected Royal’s Majesty of the Seas for the inagural trip of an All women’s travel group that I recently started. My question is…..When will you add short cruises to Galveston or New Orleans to compete with Carnival? Now personally, given the choice, I would never step foot on a Carnival ship again! But, I know that my husband and I would love to be able to have a weekend get-a-way on a Royal shilp, if one was available from either of these gulf ports. In fact, I’m sure that you would sell out every time.

  • Eli Deutsch

    Would like to see a few short cruises on the Oasis and the allure. This would I believe help clients and Royal Caribbean, by offering a low cost way for those not sure of the large ship experience, to inexpensively sample this experience. As an outside travel agent, I get requests from clients to sail the Oasis class, but they would like to do it on a shorter cruise before committing to a 7 night trip.

  • Dee

    I’m a fourteen year old girl (Fifteen tomorrow! YAY!) from Saudi Arabia and I’ve been on the brilliance of the seas last july, I keep on saying this to every single person I run into. BEST. SUMMER. EVER. I’m begging my parents to take me on another one next summer. You can’t believe how much fun I’ve had!!! I’ve made friends all the way from Norther Ireland, England, The U.S.A, Scottland, South Africa, and even Canada! we even made our own Facebook group so we can stay connected! and I can’t even think of how at home the crew make you feel! our cabin steward was amazing! Left me wondering how he knew my name the very first day I saw him! Our waiters were simply amazing! and best of all, was the teen director! Roberto M.! He was amazing! if it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have lost my shyness and wouldn’t have had HALF the fun I had! Thanks to YOU, I’ve made such great memories I can never forget! THANK YOU ADAM :D!!

  • helen – mama monarch

    Adam, has anyone on your staff noticed, that on your new home page, the prices listed are SO high. I mean, Caribbean starting at $2099. Surely this has to be an error? Or are they prices for suites? Think you might catch more fish with your Sea calling if prices were within most peoples means.

  • Ronald Heape

    We have been loyal cruisers with Royal Caribbean exclusively .. diamond members .. including the concierge lounge, and then we receive a notice that we no longer have that privilege!!!! Mr. President .. when your customer has been included in a program for several years .. you do not pull the rug out from under them .. you Grandfather them in, with all immenities they are accustomed to .. given to them by you for their loyalty and for all the cruises (and yes money) they have so graciously given your line. We would love to take another cruise on Royal Caribbean, however … well, we await your reply.

  • Dawn Hyde

    Why only the US and Canadians can enter in the Royal Enter to win a Cruise on FaceBook,

    Everyone on FB should be able to enter, at least for those how has a US Visa and can Afford air fare. we should be able to enter. However int he country slot of session that has to be filled out , on US and Canada is shown.