Hotel Andaluz, a LEED-gold, AAA Four Diamond boutique property in New Mexico, was somewhat of a hidden gem. The hotel had a great story to tell since being renovated in 2009 but the staff didn’t have the time or expertise to handle the PR function internally. They enlisted RPR to serve as an outsourced PR Director for the hotel. In this role, RPR provides marketing/PR strategy and guidance on new packages, promotions and hotel offerings. RPR works closely with the GM, Director of Sales and Social Media Manager to ensure brand alignment among all marketing efforts.
STRATEGIES + TACTICS
RPR developed a multi-layered media relations strategy that focused on regional, national and industry publications.
First, we established a base level of awareness with introductions to national travel publications such as Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, HotelChatter.com by Conde Nast and USA Today Travel. This was the first step to ensuring that Hotel Andaluz wasn’t overlooked when it comes to hotel rankings and hot lists.
Next, we focused on a very targeted list of outlets to court for coverage that highlighted the unique aspects of the Hotel Andaluz brand. National publications often have longer lead times and securing meaningful coverage required a thoughtful, consistent and aggressive strategy.
We introduced Hotel Andaluz to travel writers, bloggers and mainstream media in regional and feeder city outlets. Following these introductions, we developed a Hotel Andaluz editorial calendar with story ideas and angles for the entire year. This included timely and newsworthy items that we pitched, allowing us to follow up with fresh story ideas on a consistent basis. We also took advantage of timely stories in the media that related to Hotel Andaluz.
The secret is now out and the hotel is no longer a “hidden gem”. In the first year on board, RPR secured more than 80 media placements from individualized pitching and press visits, including top publications such as Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, AOL Travel, Details Magazine, Huffington Post, NY Daily News and Hotel Chatter. In addition to leisure travel, niche publications such as Smart Meetings have covered the property as an ideal venue for meetings and conventions.
Additionally, the hotel received several national accolades as a result of the increased exposure. AOL Travel featured the hotel as one of its “10 Innovative Green Hotels in the U.S.” Details Magazine named Hotel Andaluz one of its “11 Luxury Destinations with an Eco-Conscience.” Conde Nast Traveler recognized the property with a Reader’s Choice Award.