Four Seasons challenges influencer efficacy and authenticity with Envoy campaign

Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts recently introduced its Envoy by Four Seasons programme, which aims to engage creative storytellers and artists across all mediums. To tap into the untapped pool of talented artists, Four Seasons called for storytellers and content creators to apply and be a part of the Envoy experience.

Speaking to Marketing exclusively, Peter Nowlan, executive vice president and chief marketing officer, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts said the Envoy by Four Seasons programme was born in response to the challenges related to influencer efficacy and authenticity. Adding that content quality is the new measure of value in the realm of influencer marketing, he said that the influencer marketing sphere has become a crowded space due to its popularity as well as the influx of those defining themselves as influencers.

With Envoy, Four Seasons aims to showcase its properties and experiences through a differentiated and elevated point of view. Most importantly, the hospitality group aims to target the Millennial segment and the “Millennial” mindset that is ingrained in all generations who are technologically savvy, expect personalised service, and seek deep travel experiences that connect them to people and place.

Nowlan explained that social validation and the desire to create Instagram-worthy content drives and influences travel choice among Millennials and the Millennial-minded. This audience represents a significant driver of current and future growth with increasing spending power. Millennials are also seeking more out of their travel experiences and with the Envoy campaign, Four Seasons hopes to showcase the experiences and content they want to see, engaging audiences who look to their social networks for travel inspiration, discovery and meaningful connections to the world around them.

For the campaign, Four Seasons worked with American artist and illustrator Missy Dunaway for her craftsmanship, visual narrative style and passion for travel. Unlike well-known social media influencers, Dunaway does not boast a large number of follower count and currently has no brand-paid posts on her Instagram. Dunaway carries the skill of watercolour painting on journals that are often inspired by her travel trips. Working with Four Seasons, Dunaway was flown to Hoi An, Vietnam where she had a stay at Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai while articulating her experience through paintings.

Since engaging Missy Dunaway, Nowlan said that Four Seasons saw an overwhelming response from the audience for this type of initiative. Collectively, the videos and content of the travel have had millions of impressions, views and engagements, and attracted almost 1100 applicants in being a part of the Envoy experience. Here’s a look at Dunaway’s journey:

Four Seasons collaborated with film studio Muse Storytelling to capture Dunaway’s journey and creative process at Four Seasons Resort The Nam Hai. A custom itinerary was created for the inaugural Envoy, featuring a private eight-octave crystal singing bowl lesson; a Goodnight Kiss to the Earth ceremony with floating traditional wishing candles; a sunrise expedition through My Son Temple Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage site; and a fishing excursion to learn traditional techniques in a customary Vietnamese fishing boat. The 12 PR agencies in Four Seasons’ global PR agency network helped to share the Envoy experience worldwide.