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Brief Published: 16 Sep 2016

Marriott Taps Micro-Influencers

At the Content Marketing World conference in Cleveland last week, brands from Microsoft to Lego to Dell were united in their enthusiasm for influencer marketing strategies. Hotel brand Marriott in particular has been pioneering in its use of online influencers to engage millennial audiences who, in the words of Matthew Glick, senior director of creative and content global marketing, “don’t want to see our ads”.

Previous Marriott campaigns include partnerships with YouTube lifestyle personality Rachel Talbott and travel vlogger JacksGap. Those campaigns tapped mid-tier influencers who boast several hundred thousand followers. Recently, Marriott has started to tap into the trend for working with micro-influencers, a strategy we explore in detail in our Marketing with Micro-Influencers report.

In August, it sponsored Pokemon Go obsessive Nick Johnson to travel the world capturing far-flung characters from the game. This week, it launched the You Are Here campaign, turning to members of its Marriott Rewards loyalty programme to contribute their travel tales to a series of ads broadcast during NFL coverage on US television.

“We are inspired by our Marriott Rewards member stories and are thrilled to showcase their joy of travel in our campaign,” said Karin Timpone, global marketing officer at Marriott International. “By having members tell their stories in their favourite locations, they bring our portfolio to life in an exciting way.”

It’s a prescient move from Marriott, as data increasingly shows that influencers with a smaller, more passionate fan base yield greater engagement results for brand partnerships than the big social media stars. See Marketing with Micro-Influencers for more.