'Consider this a warning': Instagram influencers savagely mocked in tourism ad

Olivia Lambert
·News Editor
·3-min read

A hilarious new tourism campaign has savagely mocked Instagram influencers for their cliche photos and social media posts.

In a new ad to promote New Zealand travel, comedian Tom Sainsbury poses as a member of the “Social Observation Squad”, following tourists to some of the country’s most iconic landmarks.

In a bid to stop people “travelling under the social influence”, the ad makes it abundantly clear the country has had enough of banal photos constantly posted to Instagram and other platforms.

A woman sits in a hot tub and looks at a mountainous New Zealand landscape.
Influencers were mocked for taking cliche photos. Source: Instagram

“I’ve been alerted to a situation that’s been happening a lot lately,” Sainsbury says at the beginning of the ad.

“People have been seeing those photos on social media and are going to great lengths to copy them.

“I mean, you know them, hot tub back shot, man sits quietly on the rock contemplating, hotdog legs, and the classic one in these parts – the summit spread eagle.”

Sainsbury then calls out people taking the cliche shots and escorts a couple away from a summit and back to town.

“I’ve seen all this before, we all have. This summer, we’re clamping down on anyone travelling under the social influence,” Sainsbury tells the travellers.

“Consider this a warning ... don’t forget to share something new.”

Sainsbury then rushes to a lavender field after reports influencers are taking more cliche photos in the area. While he doesn’t get to them in time, he does pick up a fedora that was left behind.

“I’ve just had confirmation that the lavender loiterers just shared one of the most replicated scenes on all of social media,” he said.

“It’s just really hard sometimes ... because there are so many great other photos to take besides your usual gram shots.

“What you need to do is think outside the square.”

NZ lauded for ‘brilliant’ campaign

The ad, with the tagline “Do something NEW New Zealand”, has been praised on social media for challenging the usual cliches.

“This is a brilliant campaign on so many levels! New Zealand always comes up with wonderful content,” one person said on Twitter.

“Absolutely fantastic,” another commented.

A man sits on a rock and looks out over blue water.
An Instagram photo taken at Shakespeare Cliff in New Zealand. Source: Instagram

Others on YouTube agreed it was time for tourists to stop following social media trends.

“Whoever produced this video needs a pay rise. This was funny and memorable,” a woman said.

“When I travel, I want to do something that speaks to me, not follow what is trendy or what some influencer did or said,” another commented.

“I’m so guilty of this! I laughed too hard. Time to be original now,” a third added.

It’s not the first time the Kiwis have been applauded for creative tourism campaigns.

In May 2018, the country launched an an appeal to have New Zealand included on world maps after eagle-eyed Kiwis noticed a troubling trend of them being left off.

The Get NZ on the Map campaign, staring comedian Rhys Darby and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, went viral as Darby worked to uncover possible motives for rival countries to keep New Zealand hidden.

In a clever way to spruik the country’s highlights, the ad suggested it was so New Zealand would not steal tourism from other countries.

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