Radisson Hotel Group’s bold decision to reposition its meetings and events brand, Radisson Meetings, and launch it with an impactful thought leadership campaign.
In 2018 Radisson Hotel Group launched its five-year operating plan with the goal of becoming one of the top of mind hotel companies in the world. A key part of achieving this goal is to grow its meetings and events proposition and to become the market leader in this competitive sector.
Event planners are bombarded daily with information from venues and the pressure is on to stand out. Hotel chains take a very product-focused approach in their communications strategy, even if their products are similar.
With 1,100+ hotels in operation globally, the Group saw an opportunity to create a distinctive voice in the market – and strengthen its reputation as a leader in the events industry.
- Strengthen our reputation as a market leader
- Create a distinctive voice for the Radisson Meetings brand
- Strengthen client relationships
A RESEARCH-LED STRATEGY
- Research: focus groups with event planners to understand market sentiment
- Findings: planners are looking for a trusted partner and strategic advice, not just the right venue
- Our response: we created an umbrella brand, Radisson Meetings, and a new engagement approach with clients to build stronger long-term relationships, increase awareness and sales
But we wanted to go beyond a sales pitch – to change the tone of the conversation.
So, we partnered with Longitude, a Financial Times Company, to develop a unique thought leadership campaign. Our goal was to help customers frame, validate or deepen their thinking on ways to overcome barriers and realize opportunities.
Target audience: meetings and events planners in Europe, the Middle East and Africa
This campaign was innovative for two reasons:
- Originality: we created and executed an original, evidenced-based thought leadership campaign centered on the critical issues facing our clients. We weren’t repurposing content or sponsoring industry reports published by others which is what differentiate us from our competitors.
- Relevance: By moving from a product-focused marketing approach to one focused on strategic insights, we can better help our clients achieve their goals.
STORYTELLING WITH DATA - THE RESEARCH
In March and April 2019, 607 event planners in 12 EMEA countries were surveyed, accompanied by qualitative interviews with industry leaders.
The research revealed the best practices that help planners improve ROI of their events, underlining Radisson Meetings’ proactive approach to helping clients achieve their goals.
- Thought leadership report
- Interactive benchmarking tool
- Video Q&As with industry experts
- Series of blog posts
- Dedicated landing page
- Presentation for sales teams to use in client appointments
- Press release and media pack
- Country focus reports
- Interactive brand video
BRINGING THE CAMPAIGN TO LIFE – TIMELINE:
- JANUARY TO APRIL: planning/research
- MAY: live; launch through a press conference in May-19 at the IMEX (Frankfurt)
- JULY: digital launch
- SEPTEMBER: client events
STRONG ACTIVATION PLAN
- DISPLAY ADS: programmatic display targeting key feeder markets
- SOCIAL: LinkedIn-sponsored content targeting prospects by location, skills and job title
- Digital partnership with Financial Times: brand suite and activation via FT.com
- EMAIL: Monthly emails sent to +184,000 event planners.
- F2F DRIVING ENGAGEMENT:
- Roundtable events with strategic clients to present and discuss research insights
- Sales teams visiting over 5,000 clients in EMEA to promote the campaign
Continuing to develop our thought leadership program using client feedback
Our research revealed that sustainable practices positively influences event ROI. After reading the report, clients expressed interest in learning more about this topic. Based on this feedback we have produced additional content focused on sustainability.
I) CAMPAIGN PERFORMANCE
- +42k events planners actively engaged with the content
- +15k LinkedIn posts ‘likes’
- CTR for email marketing has increased by 10% from the introduction of the thought leadership content
- Over 52.6 million users reached through programmatic campaign
II) STRENGTHENING OUR REPUTATION
• Customer comments include:
- "Learning about the research and more insight in the industry was helpful for me. I am really happy that Radisson organized and delivered this content from the bookers perspective.”
- “An excellent white paper with good proof-points … it has it all for me.”
• Radisson Hotel Group comments:
- “The “Events Horizons” represents for us the essence of guest centricity, market leadership and corporate accountability”. (Executive VP & Global Chief Commercial Officer)
- “This campaign has helped me open new doors.” (Global Account Manager)
III) STRONG ECONOMIC IMPACT IN JUST FOUR MONTHS
- 4,762 RFPs directly attributable to the campaign
- +30.13% increase in converted business
- +21.61% increase in the pipeline
- 374% estimated ROI
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