Why Hotels.com introduced National Hotel Slipper Day to mark Justin Bieber’s birthday
Justin Bieber has a penchant for sporting hotel slippers out and about.
Spotted in them whilst grabbing coffee, strolling in NYC and even at basketball… he has turned the hotel freebies into his very own fashion accessory – designing a pair for his own brand Drew House that sold out last year too.
The Big Idea
Hotels.com officially register National Hotel Slipper Day on Justin Bieber’s 25th birthday – 1 March – to “thank him for his passion for rocking hotel slippers across the years”, offering consumers $25 if they book any hotels on the big day.
What They Did
A social first campaign, Hotels.com created its own set of branded hotel slippers and robe and seeded this with lifestyle influencers.
With its own brand of humour and tongue-in-cheek tone of voice it teased the new national day on its Instagram stories – baiting Bieber and wishing him an early happy 25th, showcasing imagery of the official certification of the day and the branded swag. Completing the circle and delivering a consumer call to action with the $25 voucher for any bookings made using a dedicated ‘slipper’ voucher code.
It delivered on social, but this also got the attention of the media titles – with core US titles such as USA Today, Yahoo Lifestyle and Elite Daily running with the story – as well as international pick up.
On Instagram and Twitter, posts about the campaign were liked, shared or commented on (4,000 and 2,700 times, respectively). Influencers shared the content organically as this was an unpaid relationship – relying solely on the inherent talkability of the idea to deliver traction.
Happy early bday @justinbieber! 🎂 - A gift to you, March 1st will now forever be #NationalHotelSlipperDay. pic.twitter.com/GEAJzcX3iP— Hotels.com (@hotelsdotcom) 27 February 2019
I love it – from its simplicity to its humour.
It’s one of those ideas that makes you chuckle and you immediately want to share and tell someone about.
It’s a great example of turning a clever observation into something that can work to deliver brand awareness and potential for consumer action. It targets the brand’s millennial audience by aligning the brand with pop culture and celebrity and shows the consumer through humour Hotels.com is relevant to them.
As a standalone activation, it could be criticised for being a little flash in the pan, but from Hotels.com it makes sense – its brand humour and light-hearted approach to social whilst tapping into a cultural happening that plays to the heart of their offering.
This means it’s just a great, low-cost way of getting into the heart of their audience’s conversation. And above all it was fun!
Next up its Pool Hopper job application – not original, but sure to capture the attention of its audience again...
For me it’s the simplicity that made it, but perhaps creating some more creative video content to support the activity would have made this travel further and of course, potentially garnered engagement from the elusive Bieber.
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