Carlson Introduces Exclusive Loyalty Program

Source: Direct Marketing News; By Juan Martinez; March 31, 2011


In collaboration with client partner Carlson Hotels Worldwide, VML helped relaunch the hotel company’s customer loyalty program and develop mobile applications for iPhone and Android devices.  VML, the digital agency of record for Carlson, also manages online media and was recently named Carlson’s mobile agency of record.  The newly launched programs were highlighted by Juan Martinez of Direct Marketing News.


A portion of the article regarding Carlson is provided below.


Carlson, a hospitality and travel company, relaunched its hotel loyalty program on March 31.  The revamped program will feature free in-room Wi-Fi, no blackout dates, rollover nights and complimentary room upgrades, among other benefits.  InterContinental Hotels Group also said this week that it will relaunch parts of its loyalty platform in the next three months.


“We wanted to help the hotels grow revenue,” said Heather Passe, VP of marketing, loyalty and e-commerce at Carlson Hotels.  "Loyalty is a key component of that.  We made significant changes to the program to make it customer-centric.  The changes are beneficial to both existing and prospective customers."


Carlson will conduct the “Stay Twice, Earn a Free Night” promotion from April 15 through June 15 at its more than 1,000 branded hotels worldwide.  Both current and newly enrolled members who register and then stay twice at a Carlson property during the promotional period will earn a free night's stay.


Carlson worked with two agencies on the relaunch. Interactive agency VML was responsible for the digital aspects, and Teviot Creative, a Scotland-based agency, managed the program's branding and creative.  The company worked with Riley Hayes on copywriting and support.


Passe said Carlson would like to double the size of the loyalty program by 2013. It was previously known as Goldpoints Plus.


Other program benefits include a 75% point bonus on eligible stays.  Starting mid-year, access to a special concierge service line for theater and sports tickets, and reservations at participating restaurants will also be included in the deal.


Carlson also launched a mobile app on March 31 for iPhone and Android devices.  The app will include express booking, personalization options, GPS mapping and the ability to redeem points.  The app also links to an “explore destinations” feature, with more than 4.4 million points of interest from local restaurants to tourist attractions. “


To view the full article, click here.