Case Study: Hilton Marketing Strategy Globe-Trots To 7 Urban Wonders With 7 Travel Influencers

March 27, 2019
For the latest influencer marketing news, resources, and case studies, subscribe to our weekly newsletter!

Instagram Influencer Marketing Case Study: Hilton Journeys With Travel Influencers On Wondrous, Wanderlust Campaign

In today’s strategically curated social media landscape, hotels and resorts have become popular settings for users to showcase their outings and adventures. Creating increased awareness around destinations and amenities alike, hospitality brands have also been investing in influencer marketing as a means to woo more followers and customers.

While hotel brands have reaped many likes and comments from travel influencers bringing the world to their followers, fake and disingenuous influencers have also begun to take advantage of hotels and restaurants looking for exposure. In this way, today’s brands are learning that influencer marketing isn’t a plug-and-play practice but, rather, requires research, planning, and thorough implementation.

hilton marketing strategy

Recognized for its social media and influencer campaigns, Hilton’s marketing strategy has enabled its family of brands to succeed within a competitive space. With 267,000 followers, the company’s flagship brand, Hilton Hotels & Resorts has one of the most popular Instagram accounts within the hospitality industry.

7 Top Travel Influencers Venture To The #SevenUrbanWonders Of The World With Hilton Hotels & Resorts

As the company moves into its 100th year, Hilton is coming off an impressive 2018. Hilton’s marketing strategy has positioned the brand as a pioneer within the hospitality industry, as its innovations expand beyond its resorts and into its marketing campaigns as well.

hilton marketing strategy

With their “Seven Urban Wonders of the World” study, Hilton crowdsourced top metropolitan destinations through various social media influencers who had a combined audience of more than 3.5 million. The information was analyzed by tech partner LikeWhere and compared against other data, including traveler preferences, as well as “cuisine, culture, architecture, diversity and Instagrammability.”

Hilton announced their “Seven Urban Wonders of the World” on October 8th, 2018:

  1. Louvre, Abu Dhabi
  2. Sydney Opera House, Sydney
  3. Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo
  4. Camden Market, London
  5. The Bund, Shanghai
  6. Temple Street Night Markets, Hong Kong
  7. Albertina, Vienna

hilton marketing strategy

Following the announcement, Hilton collaborated with several travel influencers to promote their new list. As a growing category on social media, travel influencers are helping hospitality brands reach relevant and targeted audiences with their various messages and campaigns.

Goals

  • Present Hilton’s newly revealed “Seven Urban Wonders of the World.”
  • Promote Hilton Hotels & Resorts at different worldwide destinations.

Approach

  • Channel – Instagram
  • Influencers – Travel influencers from around the world, including mostly micro- and mid-tier influencers.

Preview Of Influencers

  1. @doyoutravel – 2.3 million followers
  2. @tschang – 99,900 followers
  3. @shackette – 91,000 followers
  4. @lindaberlin – 83,900 followers
  5. @alixelay – 55,300 followers
  6. @the_profashional – 48,800 followers
  7. @heymemozam – 41,400 followers

Themes

hilton marketing strategy

  • The seven sampled influencers posted at least two Instagram posts each.
  • The influencers’ “Seven Urban Wonders of the World” content included indoor and outdoor locations, as well as Hilton hotel rooms and suites.
  • Each of the fifteen sampled posts was tagged with @hiltonhotels, as well as the hashtags #SevenUrbanWonders and #RightHere.

Results

Combined Results (15 posts):

Social Reach

  • Instagram followers targeted: 2,720,000

Engagement

  • Likes: 110,302
  • Comments: 1,892
  • Engagement rate (overall average): 4.62%

Junell Cornejo Impresses Audience With Videography Skills

Travel photographer Junell Cornejo’s portfolio is filled with gorgeous global locales spanning from Bali to Bavaria. In his top performing Seven Urban Wonders post, Cornejo presented a stunning video of the architecture, shops, and environment in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.

In the caption, the Dubai-based photographer mentioned to his 91,000 followers that @hiltonhotels helped him to find Al Noor Island—a location that was shortlisted in the Seven Urban Wonders study. Cornejo’s video received 532,849 views, 18,574 likes, and 341 comments for an impressive engagement rate of 20.79%.

Alixe Lay Captures Iconic Views

London-based photographer, Alixe Lay, shoots rich, moody images of travel, food, people, and still life. For her highest performing Seven Urban Wonders post, Lay shot an area of Edinburgh, Scotland from iconic Calton Hill.

hilton marketing strategy

The richly dark image with hazy highlights included Lay’s description of Calton Hill’s impressive views for her 55,300 followers. Lay’s image garnered 7,219 likes and 111 comments, resulting in an engagement rate of 13.25%.

Guillermo Zambrano Sits Among The Louvre’s Architecture

Brazilian/Colombian travel influencer, Guillermo Zambrano, better known as @heymemozam on social media, has more than 41,000 followers on his Instagram account. Zambrano’s most engaging post from the Seven Urban Wonders campaign featured the traveler inside a top pick on Hilton’s list—the Louvre Abu Dhabi.

hilton marketing strategy

Surrounded by modern design inside the bright photo, Zambrano’s caption describes some of the important works at the Louvre Abu Dhabi, while also thanking Hilton Capital Gran Abu Dhabi. Zambrano’s post received 1,662 likes and 55 comments, achieving an engagement rate of 4.18%.

Takeaways

  • Hilton marketing strategy leveraged experienced globetrotters and travel influencers to help inform their Seven Urban Wonders study.
  • Travel influencers continue to bring the world’s most compelling destinations to engaged audiences.
  • Influencers with a background in photography and videography are able to produce content that invites social media engagement.