Starwood has announced a 10 point plan to refresh and reinvigorate the Sheraton brand. This comes after reports that it thought the brand had become tired.
The plan, dubbed Sheraton 2020, will commence immediately. From a customer perspective, the plan includes a US$100 million marketing campaign, a definition of what the brand is, the launch of the new premier tier, Sheraton Grand, innovation of the Sheraton guest experience, a commitment to service excellence; and a goal of opening more than 150 new Sheraton hotels worldwide by 2020.
For marketing, Starwood are planning to roll out a multichannel global advertising campaign, beginning in 2015 and continuing through to 2017. They are also planning to execute the “the richest Sheraton-focused SPG promotions in Starwood’s history.”
As an example, there is a new promotion starting in July called Sheraton Free Weekends. Touted as “the richest Sheraton focused SPG promotion in the history of the program”, it promises a free Sheraton weekend night for every five Sheraton nights consumed between July 9th – Sept 30th.
Starwood are proposing to create a new premium sub brand – Sheraton Grand. This will be achieved by raising 100 or more of the top Sheraton hotels to the new level. This will allow Starwood to showcase some of Starwood’s best properties and to “create a halo effect” across the group’s portfolio.
There is no detail on which Sheratons across the world may be getting bumped up to the Sheraton Grand tier. The initial focus is on global gateways to lure high-value travellers. They are also using the higher level as a carrot to encourage owners to renovate properties to the higher standard.
As part of the Sheraton 2020 plan, there are a number of other items being changed. Some of these are aimed at the investor, however there are items that are relevant to Starwood customers.
The plan is to update the branding, with a new vision to define and crystallize what Sheraton stands for as a brand. A new visual identity is proposed, incorporating the current, iconic logo.
Starwood are aiming for 150 new Sheratons across the world. This will be achieved through conversions, adaptive re-use and new-build projects. The aim is to develop the right properties in the right markets with favourable returns for owners and their investors