Premier Inn launches with Lenny

February 25, 2008 // Franchising.com // Britain's biggest and fastest growing hotel brand, Premier Inn, reveals it launch of a new multi-million advertising campaign featuring British comedian, Lenny Henry, starting on Friday 15 February 2008.

With the largest-ever media spend by a hotel brand in the UK, the new campaign leads Premier Inn's assault to transform the hotel market by uniquely combining high quality rooms and service with a total commitment to both guest satisfaction and value for money.

Following last Summer's announcement to change from its previous Premier Travel Inn name, this campaign signifies the official launch of the Premier Inn brand, and will span TV, print and online (featuring Lenny Henry) plus outdoor executions (focusing on key customer benefits of the brand). It showcases Premier Inn's updated look by depicting typical guest experiences, bringing to life the hotel's key customer benefits of quality, value and scale.

The TV ad shows Lenny Henry on tour with his manager, initially showing apprehension at staying at a Premier Inn, before testing out the quality, comfort and value for himself.

Gerard Tempest, Marketing Director at Premier Inn says: "The campaign is the pinnacle of a massive rebranding exercise that will further cement Premier Inn's position as the leading hotel brand in the UK, setting us apart from competitors in the budget sector - and beyond."

The campaign was created by Premier Inn's newly appointed advertising agency, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe / Y&R, and was built around a creative strategy of using a celebrity to drive consumer engagement with the brand.

Richard Exon, Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe / Y&R CEO says the decision to use Lenny Henry was all about personifying the 'down-to-earth' nature of the Premier Inn brand: "Lenny is a quintessential British character and a much-loved household name. His sense of humour is perfectly pitched for the Premier Inn brand."

Lenny Henry says: "Making this commercial was a lot of fun and it really does feel like Premier Inn is taking the whole budget hotel thing to the next level. I was very pleasantly surprised when I got to hang out in a hotel. I thought the quality was great, with all the creature comforts you want at a reasonable price."

The media buying strategy will focus on the leisure traveller and an insight into the periods they are known to make their travel and accommodation decisions.

Gerry Boyle, CEO, Zenith Optimedia says: "Premier Inn really understands its audience and how they buy accommodation. Using these insights we were able to target not only times of the year but also days of the week and times of the day or night".

The marketing campaign will run throughout the year with a series of peaks during key 'travel decision-making periods'.

About Premier Inn … Premier Inn is the UK's biggest and fastest growing hotel brand, with 500 hotels and more than 35,000 rooms. UK Premier Inn bedrooms are 22m² and feature a king size bed with quality duvet; en-suite bathroom with shower and bath; remote control TV/radio alarm; tea/coffee making facilities; and a spacious desk area with internet access. Premier Inn offers customers a 'Good Night Guarantee' of a good quality room, comfortable surroundings and friendly service, which is unique amongst Britain's leading hotel chains.

Premier Inn was the first Britain-wide hotel group to sign up with national tourist boards, VisitBritain, VisitScotland and VisitWales: this means Premier Inn is now part of a new quality assessment scheme, specially created for budget accommodation.

Premier Inn has won a host of awards including, most recently, 'Best Business Hotel Brand (over 50 sites)' in the 2008 Business Travel Awards, 'Best Family Travel Facilities' in the 2007 Parent Friendly Awards and 'Innovation in Sales' at the 2007 National Sales Awards

A joint venture with Emirates was announced last year to develop the Premier Inn brand in the Gulf region, with its first site in Dubai due to open in Spring 2008. Premier Inn also has a joint venture with Emaar-MGF to roll out 80 hotels in India by 2017. www.premierinn.co.uk

From Monday 14th January 2008 every Premier Inn hotel in the UK has been completely smoke free. Premier Inn has taken recent legislation banning smoking in public areas a step further by banning smoking from all of its bedrooms as well as in its integral restaurants and bars.

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