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Marketer: Cathay Pacific Airways Agency: McCann Erickson, Hong Kong

Global airline emphasizes transporting people emotionally with "Born to Move" campaign

[Hong Kong] Cathay Pacific Airways is following in the footsteps of other premium travel and tourism marketers such as the Mandarin Oriental and Peninsula hotel groups by giving its advertising a more personal and emotional resonance. The Hong Kong-based airline's global TV, print and online campaign "Born to Move" says Cathay is in the business of moving people, both physically and emotionally.

The marketing platform will run at least two or three years, said Hong Kong-based Vince Viola, worldwide account director at McCann Erickson, Cathay's longtime agency. "Rather than ... the physical aspect of Cathay's global network, we wanted to focus on the emotional side of moving, which is an intrinsic part of all of us, but people move in different ways. We wanted to celebrate movement."

In a 60-second colorful montage, scored with drum-based world music, people around the world are moving-as in dancing, hopping, jumping, skipping and bowing-on city streets, basketball courts, school desks, and subways and karaoke bars in five locales: Hong Kong, Beijing, Tokyo, New York and Paris. The copy reads: "We're born to move. Move farther. To over 90 destinations worldwide," with Cathay's tagline "Now you're really flying."

The first 10 of the 15-second commercials are expanded versions of brief moments from the longer ad, such as a pair of older Chinese men performing tai chi movements, with a message tagged onto the end like "Moving you to the heart of China."

A micro Web site ( includes a short film about the making of the ad campaign, a map of the world with tips about various destinations, and a chat room where users can add information about what moves them in different cities, like restaurants, tourist spots and cultural events.

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