In April 2016, China-based HNA Tourism, a $36B hospitality and travel company, bought the Carlson family stake in Carlson-Rezidor across EMEA, the Americas and Asia Pacific. HNA brought on a new leadership team with the ambition of becoming a top three hospitality company in the world. To do that, the new owners and leadership developed a five-year strategic plan that identified new solutions to address the fragmented structure of the organization. A Steering Committee was appointed and the five-year plan was put into place to bring worldwide alignment under a rebranded and re-energized umbrella brand, Radisson Hotel Group.
In 2017, Wye Communications was identified as lead agency to work closely with the communications and brand marketing teams to build out all elements of the rebranded organization and successfully help launch the new company internally and externally. We’ve also continued support post launch, including:
- Managing overall planning and agency coordination around the world
- Developing a new tone of voice that signals a new feeling and attitude to guests, business partners and talent
- Writing, shooting and producing a two-minute corporate movie to launch the new brand
- Strategic counsel for launching a new culture and employer brand including developing brand journey and cultural belief videos
- Creating refreshed message houses, boilerplates and FAQs for Radisson Hotel Group, the brand promise – Every Moment Matters – the seven existing hotel brands and one new luxury collection of hotels
- Rewriting Radisson Hotel Group’s website and internal and external brochures and communications for business development, the rewards program, meeting programs and other key areas of the business
- Creating the external communications plan and executing it to target trade and consumer media leading up to and for launch day in March 2018
- Developing the internal communications plan and content that informs all level of employees around the globe about the rebranding effort, including speech writing, webcast content, checklists, etc., as well as writing annual report content
- Creating a global Executive Visibility plan including managing leadership social media channels and setting up interviews with key media and influencers
- Developing and executing a consumer influencer program for newly rebranded Radisson Rewards
- Planning and attending media dinners and press conferences for company events, as well as overall on-site event support, including at the company’s annual Americas Business Conference
- Ongoing media relations in the U.S. for corporate and consumer news (restructuring, new hires, hotel openings, etc.)
The global rebrand was a massive undertaking that met all objectives. Wyecomm delivered content and messaging to all audiences in the proper cadence so owners, team members, guests and partners were well-informed about the five-year plan. The ongoing and increasing level of partnership is a testament to our successful work. We have built trust among multiple stakeholders, direct reports and agencies across the global network.
- Launch day included a press conference attended by 55 members of the media, which resulted in on-message coverage of the rebrand and five-year plan in virtually every industry-related publication and many top-tier business publications, with 222 articles published in the first two days after launch. Coverage included cover stories in Lodging magazine and Hotels’ Investment Outlook magazine.
- Most coverage was positive and forward-looking, helping to build a sales pipeline for potential owners and business partners. C-Suite leadership was thrilled with the results.
- In April 2018, President & CEO Federico González said Radisson Hotel Group had the best first quarter results since 2007. “During the quarter we have made significant progress in the execution of the key elements of our 5-year operating plan…We see 2018 as a year of recovery, and expect revenue to grow between 4% and 5%, with an EBITDA margin between 9% and 10%.”
“We couldn’t have hoped for a better partner than Wyecomm to help us bring our new baby to the world. We worked feverishly for nine months to draw up the strategic roadmap for the launch of our new brand identity, find consensus throughout the global organization, craft and consolidate messaging for the group, brands and our leaders, and bring to life a new global vision. Wyecomm played an instrumental role in helping us deliver a successful global launch. They became an extension of our corporate communications team, diving in and delivering across multiple work streams, turning this complex assignment into success. Wyecomm is highly strategic, resourceful and passionate. They have always put our agenda and needs on top of their minds and efforts, and I am very grateful to have worked with them.”
– Renu Hanegreefs-Snehi, Former Vice President, Corporate Communications, PR & Reputation Management