An integrated campaign, supported by tutorial videos by Neil Patrick Harris, providing tips to ease people back into the real world after a year of lockdowns.
Accor is a multi-national hospitality company that owns and manages more than 5,000 hotels in 110 countries; it has a portfolio of 30 brands covering different market segments. North America is home to many key brands, including Fairmont, Sofitel, Pullman, 21c Museum Hotels and Novotel.
With a global pandemic declared in mid-March 2020, hotels faced a situation unlike ever before. Business and leisure travel ground to a halt and many properties in Canada and the US were forced to shut their doors. Those that remained open, were faced with their lowest occupancy ever.
After a period of many months, lockdowns eased, and hotels began the process of reopening. As we made our way into 2021 and vaccinations rates began to increase, so did travel. We set out to launch a creative campaign encouraging people to visit our properties and re-enter the real world. In addition, we were looking to raise the profile and awareness around our loyalty program, ALL – Accor Live Limitless, within North America.
Campaign Overview and Implementation
We partnered with an agency, Momentum Worldwide, along with celebrity, Neil Patrick Harris, to make this happen. For this campaign to be a success, we needed to find a way to connect through emotion and humour, to get people excited about the possibility of travel. With the help of Neil, we set out to teach North Americans the basics of being human again, since so many of the essentials were forgotten during lockdowns.
We decided to support our summer offer with a series of light-hearted tutorial videos from Neil Patrick Harris, depicting his own struggles with the basics of human interaction. We started off by introducing the audience to his Acting Human Coach, who was humorously helping him through his struggles. The introductory video was launched in April 2021 and was followed by five ‘Get Real With Neil’ tutorial videos. The tutorials covered topics such as how to pack, how to make small talk and how to greet people – simple tasks that many of us had lost sight of. Each video featured one of our beautiful North American destinations like the Fairmont Banff Springs, The Plaza Hotel in New York or Fairmont Royal York in Toronto, thereby linking the tutorial back to our main offer.
We supported this campaign through a variety of digital and PR tactics. The videos were all housed on a microsite (allgetsreal.com), which we drove to via email, display and social media advertising. We actively promoted the videos and accompanying offer via ALL social media accounts and had the opportunity to use Neil’s platforms for this purpose, thereby reaching a new audience through his channels. The accompanying offer consisted of an escalating discount of up to 30% off, which got better the longer the guest stayed - this was also housed on the microsite.
Our audience for the campaign included the following segments:
• North American travelers, ages 35-54, with a high propensity for luxury travel; eager to resume
exploring and enjoying all the special moments they may have missed throughout the pandemic.
• Existing loyalty members of ALL – Accor Live Limitless
• Accor and brand databases
• Social media followers of Neil Patrick Harris
Goal & Objectives
The overarching goal was to drive room-night production in the region and improve brand awareness of ALL – Accor Live Limitless throughout the duration of the campaign (April 15 – September 6, 2021).
We set the following measurable objectives:
- Raise awareness around ALL; achieve 350 million combined campaign impressions
- Exceed 2019 room bookings from the same period by 15%
- Exceed 2019 revenue from the same period by 5%
While our budget is confidential, overall, the campaign was a resounding success!
Not only did we achieve an incredible 1.5 billion combined impressions (across digital, social & PR), but most importantly we saw a 111% increase in bookings and 141% increase in revenue, versus the same period in 2019 (pre-COVID). The campaign generated huge buzz and was picked up by top-tier international publications, such as People, Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler.
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