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Paul Motter February 1st, 2012 01:05 PM

Cruise Like a Norwegian?
Now, I like NCL as a cruise line and I especially admire their ambition to do things differently from the top two cruise lines. Even though the line has a dozen ships, they only carry 10% of the cruise market at most.
But they now have a new re-branding effort underway to get away from being known as “NCL” and changing that to “Norwegian.” You may have seen the new ads saying “Cruise like a Norwegian.”
Personally, I find that ad campaign a little off-putting, as if I am supposed to know how Norwegians cruise and aspire to be that way? Why can’t I cruise like what I am, an all-American boy with generally British and Mediterranean roots? But what bothers me even more about the re-branding effort is when it manifests in unintended ways.
For example, the new contest to re-name the youth programs has a description that says “The winners will be chosen by a panel of Norwegian judges based on the most creative and original name that reflects Norwegian’s brand new youth program.”
Okay – are the judges actually from Norway? Somehow, I doubt it.
Does NCL, I mean "Norwegian," not see how their new branding campaign can become pretty awkward at times? Has the "Norwegian" become an adjective instead of noun? Someone notify Websters.
What do you think of the idea?

Kuki February 1st, 2012 05:13 PM

I know the "Norwegian" ads make no logical sense, but I like them.

Rather than being literal, I think they reflect a relaxed attitude. Just a feel good thing, as opposed to be anything literally descriptive.

ruthlessboss February 2nd, 2012 07:43 AM

Maybe I'm dense, but I've yet to figure out the ad.

Robbie H February 5th, 2012 03:23 PM

After finally taking my third cruise with NCL, last being "Epic" transatlantic, they could call me a Norwegian and give me a free cruise and I would still be waving to them from an "RCI" ship ;>)

Manuel February 5th, 2012 04:52 PM

Isn't NCL owned by the Chinese?


Future Cruiser February 22nd, 2012 09:21 PM

This is not a new phenomenon. Companies decide they told us the same message too many times already and it is time to think of a different selling point. Look at Verizon - I remember they went from a black-haired salesman saying, "Can you hear me now?" to the same man leading a huge group of Verizon customers in his network. Southwest is doing it too: one year it was all about bags flying free; the next it was all about no flight change fees. Apparently Norwegian Cruise Line, which I will always call NCL no matter what because it is easier to say and type, decided it no longer needs to talk about how it leads the cruise industry in "freestyle cruising."

Paul, the "Norwegian judges" part does not change anything. Norwegian is a term used as both a noun and an adjective the same way we say American laws and "proud to be an American."

And with that, ladies and gentlemen, I am now finally able to see a countdown clock for my first cruise! Sapphire Princess, here I come! :D

Marsdude February 22nd, 2012 09:36 PM

Although I really don't pay a lot of attention to advertising, the first time I heard the phrase "cruise like a Norwegian" it made me think of being bundled up on a ship in an icy environment.

I know, a stereotype but that is what came to my mind. :rolleyes:

Paul Motter February 22nd, 2012 10:31 PM

It made me think of tall blonde people with existential and suicidal thought patterns. The last it said to me was "fun."

Now "cruise with a Norwegian" - like a 5'10" blonde like Katherine Sorland, would sound better...

But that isn't what it says, so let me explain this...

I have lived on the East Coast and the West Coast, and there is one very fundamental difference that East Coast people do not know about West Coasters, and particularly Californians.

In New York, most people are proud of their heritage, they'll say "I'm a Goombah" (jokingly) or proudly tell you they live in "Little Italy" or "Greek Town,"

But in Los Angeles people NEVER ask "what is your nationality, or heritage" It is considered politically incorrect. I work for a Los Angeles company, and at first they thought I was being "racist" when I commented that Holland America has Indonesian and Filipino workers. They wrote to me and asked... "why are you saying that?"

I had to explain this whole thing to them - that cruise lines have certain national and cultural histories, with seagoing people; Norwegians, Greeks, Italians, British, being held in a certain regard, and that in modern cruising certain crew people are commonly found on ships.

But my point is this... I suspect NCL does not understand that the campaign just plain sounds weird to some people. Do African Americans want to hear "cruise like a Norwegian?" I really doubt it.

Do you see what I am saying? Why should anyone want to cruise like a Norwegian? How do Norwegians cruise? That's just the first problerm.

Secondly - what is wrong with MY heritage? Why I can't I cruise the way God made me?

Kuki - sorry, I just don't buy the idea that Norwegians are so "Vanilla" that the campaign feels good because it doesn't make me think. I am very serious, the campaign makes me think a lot, and I find it off-putting.

What if the campaign was "cruise like an Israeli?" or "Cruise like a Russian?" or "Cruise like an Eskimo?"

It just doesn't make any sense to me.

And FYI: NCL is 50% owned by Malaysians, not Chinese, and 50% owned by Americans, and controlled by an American majority on the board of directors.

Trackypup February 22nd, 2012 11:40 PM

I kind of like it, but don't know why. I think it's catchy

Marsdude February 23rd, 2012 07:56 AM

Paul, I think you have just come up with the next phase of NCL's campaign!

They should have a commercial with Ms. Sorland getting ready to board, looking back at the camera saying "Come on board with me and cruise like a Norwegian."

The down side of this is that the cruises may start consisting mainly of men! :rolleyes:

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