|Holiday Inn drives brand performance in China with innovative marketing strategy.|
Wednesday, 30th November 2011
Source : Holiday Inn
Holiday Inn completed its USD 1 billion global relaunch at the end of 2010 and this relaunch is the largest of the kind in the industry, with more than 3,400 hotels and 430,000 rooms worldwide being refreshed.
The relaunched brand signage, hotel facilities and marketing campaign “Stay You” demonstrates Holiday Inn’s confidence in leading the brand to new heights.
Holiday Inn founder Kemmons Wilson once said, “You either take charge of change, or change will take charge of you.”
Since his founding of the first Holiday Inn Hotel in 1952, innovation has been the inspiration and core strength that made the brand a leader in the hotel industry for more than half a decade.
As one of the first international hotel brands to establish a presence in 1984, Holiday Inn is the most recognised hotel brand in China with more than 80 Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express hotels operating in the region. Nearly one year after the completion of its brand relaunch, Holiday Inn is adopting an innovative marketing strategy with new media channels to build more platforms for consumer conversation.
“At the one-year anniversary of the completion of our Holiday Inn brand relaunch, we have seen encouraging feedback from the market,” said Keith Barr, chief executive officer of IHG Greater China. “In addition to improved customer experience, we have also adopted pioneering marketing approaches to boost the image of this widely loved brand which has been refreshed for the next generation of travellers.”
360° Market Outreach Stirs Up Consumer Fantasies of “Holiday Inn” Stories
Right before this year’s National Day Holiday in China, Holiday Inn debuted a feature movie called Holiday Story to be played on thousands of high-tech flat screen monitors in Shanghai’s taxis and office buildings, as well as on major website portals. This movie features actress Qin Lan, who is very well known in China for her leading roles in popular TV shows and movies. Holiday Inn received overwhelmingly positive feedback for the movie, capturing people’s holiday mood at the end of September. It was used to kick off an interactive campaign on the brand’s official Sina Weibo channel to encourage fans to share their holiday fantasies. In less than a month, the number of Weibo followers exceeded 40,000.
This out-of-ordinary movie is a blend of drama and advertising, and part of the ‘Stay You’ campaign Holiday Inn has launched to promote the brand. It demonstrates a unique departure from conventional marketing and is proving to be very effective. It creates real entertainment for customers while delivering a complementary message along the way, which includes the brand hallmarks of Holiday Inn such as Choice of ‘soft’ or ‘firm’ pillows, signature showers and real service.
Time Travel at Press Conference, Holiday Inn Wows Audience Again
As a finale to this innovative marketing initiative, Holiday Inn successfully wowed the audience once again with a well designed press conference full of surprises. The event kicked off with a staged show entitled “Stay You, Stay at Holiday Inn”, with the stories partially drawn from the holiday stories that consumers had shared on Sina Weibo. One of the nation’s best theatre production teams was invited by Holiday Inn to put together a show that led audiences on a wonderful journey from holiday stories to a real-time media conference. The Holiday Inn brand concept was carried forth dynamically throughout the show, providing audiences with both brand core values and a great theatre experience.
Nick Barton, vice president of sales and marketing, IHG Greater China, attended the event and reviewed the campaign results with the audience. "It's a new medium," he said. “Producing a film with strong elements of brand hallmarks is an innovation for an hotelier like us, and it really works in the market as it's easier for the audience to accept our brand messages because of the setting."