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« French it » : french art of life by Sofitel

Sofitel has just unveiled its new promotional campaign entitled "French it" which highlights the French art of living, a principle dear to the brand which is also the basis of its positioning.

While the health situation is stabilising and thus allowing a recovery in tourism on a national scale, hotels are generally returning to satisfactory occupancy rates. In order to attract the attention of tourists and to reaffirm their positioning, many hotel chains are developing promotional campaigns.

To stand out in this highly competitive market, Sofitel is playing the originality card with its new "French it" campaign which, as its name suggests, highlights the French art of living. The joie de vivre and the typical French lifestyle are both part of the Sofitel brand's DNA through its motto "Live the french way" and this campaign aims to reaffirm this unique identity  revealing a more playful and daring side.

Sofitel is the international ambassador of French savoir-faire and art de vivre. Our 'French Spirit' is the quality most often praised by our guests and the most frequently mentioned in their comments, so we understand that it is an important point for them. Now a signature element of the Sofitel brand, our typically French joie de vivre is present in our various locations in over 40 different countries on 5 continents.

Joao M.Rocco, Vice President in charge of Sofitel's luxury brands

Alex Schellenberger, Accor's Head of Premium and Luxury Brand, Joao M.Rocco, Vice President in charge of Sofitel's luxury brands, and Jean-Guilhem Lamberti, Accor's Creative Director, presented a preview of this new highly visual campaign, which is currently made up of six mini-episodes. These episodes feature typical French expressions:

  • Poser un lapin which means to stand someone up 
  • Tomber dans les pommes which means fainting
  • Ne pas être de la tarte which means not to be a piece of cake
  • Être canon which means be stuning 
  • Avoir un coup de foudre which means fall in love
  • Monter sur ses grands chevaux which means gets on his high horse 

Each phrase has been carefully chosen to highlight Sofitel's offerings and services, for example, "poser un lapin" highlights the comfort of the brand's bedding, which is so comfortable you don't want to leave. "Tomber dans les pommes" and "ne pas être de la tarte" emphasise the quality and the diversity of the gastronomic offer and also a new apple-themed pastry offer will soon be launched in the hotels in China.

The phrase "être canon" highlights the spa offering of the hotels which offers guests the opportunity to relax and be "on top of their game" at all times. The episode "avoir un coup de foudre" highlights both the fitness areas and the fact that during stays in Sofitel establishments one falls in love with everything and everyone. Finally, the expression "monter sur ses grands chevaux" is used to depict the dynamic and eclectic nightlife offered by the brand.

The aesthetics of each video is very elaborate and striking in order to emphasize the brand's own values such as sensuality, fun, uniqueness, luxury, audacity, style and freedom of spirit. To put all this in place, three women from different backgrounds and professions were mobilised, dancer Helena Oldmedo Duynslaeger, singer and model Lomijob and art director Moocube. The aim being to have an inclusive cast that reflects the positioning of Sofitel. The goal was also to demonstrate that the French art of living is simply a state of mind and that it can be applied anywhere. By using an all-female cast of strong, independent women, Sofitel aims to target a predominantly female clientele that already represents the majority of its customer base.

We believe that everyone, even if they are not French, can embody the French style and way of life, which is the result of a set of diverse values: a particular style that combines sensuality, audacity and vivacity, with a hint of non-conformism.

Alex Schellenberger, Accor's Head of Premium and Luxury Brand

With this campaign, we wanted to return to the roots of the Sofitel brand by proposing a French art of living adapted to all. We deliberately chose a non-French cast, because "Live the French Way" consists of conveying common values (a particular style that combines sensuality, audacity and vivacity, with a hint of non-conformism), regardless of nationality. We also chose to propose a mainly female cast as opposed to the traditionally male representation of luxury and business travel.

Jean-Guilhem Lamberti, Accor's Creative Director

The campaign is therefore designed in line with the DNA of the Sofitel brand, sophisticated and luxurious but breaking with traditional codes. It is both catchy and fun with a notable touch of humour around the French language and its very imaginative expressions. The creators of this campaign hope that it will go viral and above all that it will start a discussion between customers and the brand. These 6 episodes are only the beginning of the launch of this new campaign which will begin on 8 November 2021 in France and the UK before being released in China on 30 November, other episodes and content are to come in 2022.

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