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Best Advertising Strategy: Clearwater Travel Plaza

Client Overview

Since 1976, Clearwater Travel Plaza has been in the business of serving professional drivers and travelers alike. They’re far enough away from the Twin Cities to avoid the chaos of the traffic, but close enough to not be out of the way either. They’re also our final entry in our Best Advertising Strategy blog series.

Clearwater Travel Plaza LogoLocated just off interstate 94 in Clearwater, they’re in a prime location for anyone on the road to stop by for just about anything they may need. And when I say just about anything, it’s true. Clearwater Travel Plaza is one of a kind. They’re not just a gas station. They're a travel plaza with a full service restaurant and bar, bakery, food court, gift shop, car wash, fuel center, and convenience store. They even offer catering services through Cutting Edge Catering.

And that’s just what they offer for the average traveler.

For professional drivers, they have all of the above, plus a private driver’s lounge, showers, laundry, separate fuel center, weigh station, truck wash, and dozens of other amenities to make professional drivers feel at home.

A Lot in Store for You

Their jingle is a brilliant play on words, plus it’s catchy – so don’t be surprised if it becomes your latest earworm. After all, that’s the whole point of a jingle, right? To get stuck in your head.

“Indulge. Enjoy. The Clearwater Travel Plaza has a lot in store for you!”

The play on words references the fact that Clearwater Travel Plaza really is a one-stop-shop – or store. They have a restaurant and pub, a convenience store, gas station, truckers' lounge for professional drivers, a bakery, gift shop, fuel center, weigh station, and car wash. Wow. So yes. They do have a lot in store for you.

Another Reason Why ...

Clearwater Travel Plaza has a lot to offer their customers. So, that’s what they focus on in their advertising strategy. Except, it’s not what you’d expect. Yes, they have thousands of things to offer, but they only focus on one per ad. They pick one thing and dramatize it. Like, their happy hour appetizer specials, for example:

Each ad is just another reason why they have a lot in store for you.

Why the Strategy Works

What makes Clearwater Travel Plaza different from the others? Well, honestly, there aren’t many others quite like them. They’re a truck stop. They’re a bakery. They’re a restaurant/pub. They’re a gas station. They’re a catering service. They have a lot to offer travelers. Their store would be the perfect candidate for a hokey slogan like “For all your traveling needs!” But that’s not memorable, and it won’t make them memorable either.

To dramatize it all, Clearwater Travel Plaza chose to focus on everything - just one bite at a time. Their ads are all voiced by the same guy and end with their jingle’s sing out. Their radio scripts use odd and uncommon words to paint a vivid mental picture of what the narrator is describing in his unique style of delivery.

That’s another thing that makes them different. Their voice guy’s delivery stands out. He’s not a screaming car salesman, nor is he a big voiced “radio guy.” He’s just a guy with his own style. It’s a candid, off the cuff, tell-it-like-it-is kind of style. Reminiscent of the Tom Bodett ads for Motel 6.

When you hear a radio ad for Clearwater Travel Plaza come on, you’ll identify who it’s for immediately, because the voice is their signature voice, and their message is unmistakable. That’s the power of consistency. Do the same thing over and over again for long enough, and you’ll be remembered in the minds of your consumers.

Clearwater Travel Plaza did just that.

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