Travelodge Brand Delivers Targeted Marketing Punch
(Wednesday, May 25, 2005) - After symbolically taking off his gloves and tossing them into the audience, Travelodge Senior Director of Marketing Andy Maguire announced to franchisees attending their conference here today that the brand will deliver "sharper" and "more targeted marketing punches" in 2005.
Maguire said the Travelodge brand will "knock out the competition" with its 2005 marketing strategies, beginning with an online marketing campaign encompassing paid search on Google and Overture and banner advertising on sites including MapQuest.com and Yahoo!.
To complement online marketing efforts, the brand will launch a "competitively superior" Web site with "next-generation functionality, making it easy for visitors to find and reserve a room with exactly the location, bed configuration, amenities and rate they prefer in the fewest possible clicks and least amount of time," Maguire said.
The brand also will implement a new photo standard next year to improve its "online curb appeal." It has negotiated a discount price for professional photographers to shoot high-resolution photos of each property for posting on Travelodge.com and general marketing purposes. Properties in good standing will receive the photos for free.
Maguire announced that the Travelodge brand will sponsor the National Guard #16 Ford Taurus race car for the second year in a row and advertise in national racing publications and on national cable television for the entire racing season.
"This marketing relationship, now in its second year, is between two great American brands that are committed to helping America sleep soundly," said Maguire.
At the property level, the brand will offer two new premium room types by early 2006: The Hibernation Den Room, focusing on a "great night's sleep after a hard day of playing," and the Work Den Room, catering to the business traveler. Franchisees can choose to offer them if appropriate for their markets.
The Hibernation Den Room is currently designed to feature an in-room micro fridge with a free snack and water, beds with a plush mattress topper and soft cotton sheets, blankets and pillows, an alarm with ocean and nature sounds and in-room movies with one free selection.
The Work Den Room is currently designed to feature a work desk with free high-speed Internet access, special lighting in bathrooms and around the work desk and a cushioned lap desk to use while in bed or sitting in the chair.
Marketing efforts for the summer center on the TripRewards loyalty program's 'Stay a Spell' promotion, which offers guests a Bewitched movie-themed coupon booklet valued at more than $250. In Columbia Pictures' beguiling romantic comedy, Bewitched, an all-star cast led by Nicole Kidman, Will Ferrell, Shirley MacLaine and Michael Caine cast their spell on the movie version of one of TV's most memorable and beloved shows under the direction of Nora Ephron. The film releases in theaters June 24, 2005.
During the promotional period, TripRewards members can enter a sweepstakes for daily and monthly prizes. Every day during the promotion, TripRewards will give away gas cards valued at $100 each in the "Stay a Spell" online instant win game. Four times during the promotion TripRewards members can win one million TripRewards points.
One million TripRewards points could be redeemed for 166 free hotel night stays, five months worth of car rentals, 181 $25 gift cards from top retailers, 30 mountain bikes, 68 blenders, 18 plane tickets or other great rewards.
The coupon book includes a free car rental upgrade and discounts on shopping and entertainment.
The first Travelodge hotel was introduced in 1939 in response to travelers' needs for roadside accommodations. Today, Travelodge Hotels is a growing franchise system with 519 upper-economy Travelodge and budget Thriftlodge® properties representing 39,207 guest rooms throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico. Reservations and further information are available by visiting www.travelodge.com or calling the toll-free Travelodge number, (800) 578-7878, or the Thriftlodge number, (800) 525-9055. Travelodge Hotels is a subsidiary of Cendant Corporation (NYSE: CD).
About Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures, part of the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, is a Sony Pictures Entertainment company. Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America (SCA), a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; digital content creation and distribution; worldwide channel investments; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of filmed entertainment in 67 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.
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