PARKROYAL COLLECTION, the third brand from Pan Pacific Hotels Group, was developed to cement the group’s commitment towards sustainable hospitality. The brand was created for consumers with a sense of purpose and responsibility at heart, and it recognises that its travellers are perceptive and early adopters of technology, with a penchant for style and design.
As such, Pan Pacific Hotels Group sought to communicate the PARKROYAL Collection brand promise to consumers via social media. In a bid to stand out from competitors, the group launched the “Planting the seeds for PARKROYAL COLLECTION” campaign, which eventually enabled it to clinch the silver award for “Best Use of Relationship Marketing – B2C” at MARKETING-INTERACTIVE’s recent Loyalty & Engagement Awards 2020.
While each of the PARKROYAL COLLECTION properties had direct competitors within their vicinity, the group was clear that the key challenge for each property was not the competitors but rather three main aspects.
1. Communicating the rebrand of PARKROYAL on Pickering
PARKROYAL on Pickering rebranded to PARKROYAL COLLECTION Pickering and the group wanted to communicate that despite the rebrand, the PARKROYAL name still remains. This was especially important because PARKROYAL COLLECTION Pickering is one of the popular Instagram attractions in Singapore. Hence, while its target audience might not be aware of the rebranding, Pan Pacific Hotels Group was still keen on making the distinctions clear.
2. The launch date of PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay
The hotel’s transformation of a “garden into a hotel” is being executed in phases and is expected to be completed in 2021. Hence, this limits the areas within the hotel which it could showcase while the renovations were taking place.
3. Educating a completely new brand
While PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay has yet to complete its revamp, it was still operating and accepting guests. Hence, the group felt the need to strike a balance of promoting both hotels on the new brand page, while communicating the brand essence of the PARKROYAL Collection.
Despite the ongoing renovations at PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay, the group knew it was still important to showcase features of the hotel. Hence, it had to rethink ways to communicate value to guests, since hotels tend to communicate their offerings mainly by showcasing its hospitable employees and the hotel amenities.
Previously, the group mainly focused on the green features of its PARKROYAL COLLECTION properties. However, this time round, it worked to generate ongoing awareness and interest in PARKROYAL COLLECTION by constantly inspiring travellers with a closer-to-nature vacation or staycation. Not only that, it also realigned the goals it wanted to achieve, which included engagement with local and overseas guests through on-property and out-of-property content, as well as awareness of what PARKROYAL COLLECTION stands for as a brand. It also believes that fan growth would come as a by-product of engagement initiatives and awareness of the brand.
The group focused on Instagram and Facebook for the campaign. More specifically, Instagram was the primary platform which featured visual-led scenarios to entice consumers to find out more about PARKROYAL COLLECTION hotels, while Facebook took on a more tactical support function. On Facebook, the group had to run ongoing ads that highlight campaign mechanics or offers targeted at specific audiences.
Through the campaign, the group wanted to communicate three key messages – the PARKROYAL COLLECTION brand, PARKROYAL COLLECTION Pickering and PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay. Instagram's profile feed, which was structured in a grid of three, enabled for the brand to showcase all three aspects at the same time.
In the campaign, the group anchored the two properties and the core brand to create a more impactful and appealing feed to differentiate each of the properties’ Instagram feeds. At the same time, it also anchored the brand through a lush green lifestyle art direction, as well as curated user-generated content from past guests.
Meanwhile, it leveraged Facebook to promote room stay promotions, limited time offers as well as seasonal dining promotions to drive direct response to bookings. It also adapted key visuals from Instagram to run as traffic ads. Additionally, it was also intentional with the type of ads it pushed out and balanced regional and local targeting across all ad objectives to obtain the right representation. For example, the group made sure not to have too much engagement from lower cost per metric countries such as Indonesia and the Philippines.
Majority of the media went to reach (70%) while the other 30% went to engagement. For reach, it focused on local ads geared towards staycations and regional ads geared towards Singapore as a holiday destination and hotel experiences. It also prioritised engagement ads according to post function - contest and new hotel features.
The campaign was executed in three phases. The first phase focused on the brand DNA and highlighted the key message of PARKROYAL COLLECTION, introduced the two properties at Pickering Street and Marina Bay, and also comprised of a “Spot and Win” contest on Instagram. Users had to identify which part of the hotels the images on Instagram belonged to.
Phase two is an ongoing initiative that focuses on hotel experiences, including restaurant promotions and occasions such as weddings and anniversaries. This is communicated via its curated Instagram feed, which showcases pictures of relaxing by the pool or diving onto the bed, for example. Meanwhile, the last phase covers experiences outside of the properties, such as experiences guests can enjoy around the hotels’ vicinity.
Additionally, it also highlighted the brand story and latest happenings on its Instagram Stories. Two key Instagram highlights were created – the transformation of PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay and travel templates to constantly engage its target audience during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The group’s efforts paid off, for it was able to achieve all its goals by being cost effective with its creative production and ad spend. Overall, the PARKROYAL COLLECTION team saw a significant uptake in performance in less than two months. Its ads also performed efficiently across various objectives and the best performing add was a drone video showcasing PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay’s new mineral pool.
Additionally, the group also saw a positive brand uplift and awareness on social media achieved from the launch campaign. On the business front, it also saw an exponential increase in direct digital revenue compared to the previous year. The group believes that moving forward, it will be easier for them to readily launch new hotel awareness campaigns and yield positive results as it has already established a strategic framework.