Increasing Hotel Traffic Via Direct Mail

by Sarandipity

The objective of this direct mail campaign I wrote at Ogilvy & Mather Direct was to increase suite traffic to Windsor Manor, a Welcomgroup Sheraton hotel in Bangalore.

The objective of this direct mail campaign was to increase suite traffic to Windsor Manor, a Welcomgroup Sheraton hotel in Bangalore. The strategy was to gather information about the travel habits of CEO's, as well as thank and motivate regular hotel guests. Once information was available, letters were sent to the CEOs with special offers.

A mailing with a holiday offer was first sent to the secretaries of CEOs in order to gather important information about their travel habits.

The idea for the creative route emerged from the copywriter studying the hotel's guest book. She discovered that the President of France and the Prince of Norway had stayed in the hotel when they visited Bangalore. The idea for the visual look of the mailings came from the hotel "coat of arms" that appeared on every suite door. This added a touch of exclusivity and class to the mailings. The emblem appeared on the envelopes and as a watermark on the letters.

Envelope to CEO's Secretary

Envelope to CEO's Secretary
Envelope to CEO's Secretary

Direct Mail to CEO's Secretary

Here is a letter targeted to the CEO whose secretary sent in the information about his travel habits and plans.

Envelope headline: Find out how to book your Boss into the same hotel as the President of France and the Prince of Norway, and win a holiday for two to Goa.

Dear Thoughtful Secretary,

Wouldn't you like your Boss to stay in the same hotel as the President of France and the Prince of Norway? I'm sure you'd want him to be as well looked-after as possible when he travels on business.

Perhaps you've already guessed which hotel in Bangalore is most preferred by distinguished business travelers. Yes, it is the Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Sheraton.

I'm writing to you because probably you are the one that does hotel bookings for your Boss and you are the only one who knows his personal preferences. Your answers will help us take care of your Boss when he is in Bangalore.

To make it really worth your while, we will enter your response in the Goa Draw so you could win a 3 nights, 4 days holiday for two in Goa. The package includes air tickets for two from Bangalore to Goa or Bombay to Goa. And a complimentary stay at Cicade de Goa. The offer is valid from April 15 1992 to September 30, 1992.

Of course, you're under no obligation to send us any information you consider confidential. If you wish, you could get your answers cleared by your Boss before sending them to us.

So, if you want to help your Boss travel better, please fill in your answers and send the form to me in the reply-paid envelope by April 30, 1992. You could fill it in on your way home, in the evening when you're free for five minutes or at lunch.

I'm sure he'll thank you for helping him experience the Magic of the Manor. The magic that bewitched the President of France and the Prince of Norway.

Thanking you,

Sincerely

Ramma Basappa

Sales Manager

Questions in the Response Device

Questions the secretary had to answer on the reply form were related to who did the CEO's travel bookings (if not the secretary), the number of times he traveled in a year, the hotel in which he usually stayed and the type of room he preferred.

The Response Device in Direct Mail

The Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Questionnaire
The Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Questio...
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A Brief Analysis of the Direct Mail Letter

Notice that this letter is formal in tone, yet warm. The formality is partly expressed through the absence of contractions. It begins with the basic creative idea of the CEO being in good company in a Sheraton hotel, and ends with it. It attempts to make the exercise sound easy and convenient, telling the secretary that it would only take five minutes of her time and she can fill in the answers during her ride home, in the evening or at lunch time in the office.

It also suggests that she could check with her Boss for the answers. The offer of a holiday for two to Goa at a prestigious hotel is the clincher.

Direct Mail Letter to New Prospects

Here is a letter targeted to the CEO whose secretary sent in the information about his travel habits and plans.

Envelope Headline: Are you ready to stay in the same hotel as the President of France and the Prince of Norway?

Letter:

I am writing to ask for your secret vote on a very debatable subject - "Should senior people stay in suites or not?"

Of course, the President of France and the Prince of Norway chose to stay in Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Sheraton suites when they were in Bangalore.

All the same, "Should Senior people stay in suites or not?" is a very controversial subject. Some people think it is an unnecessary indulgence. Others feel that staying in a suite is important, not only because of the comfort and convenience, but also because of the good it does for their personal and corporate image.

It's like wearing a Rolex watch or drinking Chivas Regal.

As you will find out later, a lot depends on what you have to say about suites. There is a pleasant surprise for you in my next letter. Your vote will remain a secret, you need not sign it. Simply tick one of the two votes you believe in, slip it into our reply paid Vote Box and send it to me by June 10, 1992.

Sincerely,

Nakul Anand

General Manager

Copy for Response Device

Headline: Your Secret Vote n a very debatable subject

"Should senior people stay in suites or not?"

I think a Higher Category Room is good enough for me. Who needs the extra comfort of the suite? Besides, I don't believe in indulgence. I'd like to save my Company's money for more important things!

(Do you agree with the view above? If so, please tick the box and insert this card into the reply paid Vote Box and mail it to reach us by 10th June, 1992. You need not sign it. It's your secret.)

How to Get a CEO to Read Direct Mail

Notice the warm and conversational tone of the letter and the absence of the word "our." There is absolute clarity in the communication and the letter is brief. Senior people don't have much time to waste. The idea of asking the CEO for his secret vote worked extremely well. Men in power like to give their opinions, especially when they know that it can be rewarding. And, they like to think that they are in good company.

Fulfillment Direct Mail Letter to CEO

In the previous letter, we asked the CEO's opinion on whether senior people should stay in suites or not. Those who responded received the following letter and a special offer of discounted rates on the Windsor Manor suites.

Envelope Headline: Inside: The very rewarding results of your Secret Vote

The last time I wrote to you for your secret vote on a very debatable subject - "Should senior people stay in suites or not?,' I told you that a lot depended on it.

I'm happy to share the results of our Secret Ballot with you. 72% of those who voted feel that people like you should stay in a suite.

Since the ballot, as you know was secret, I don't know what your own views on the subject are, but I have a very special offer for you. I'm inviting you to stay in a Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Sheraton Deluxe Suite on your next trip to Bangalore.

You pay only Ececutive Club room rates. Then if you are completely satisfied and would like to stay in the Deluxe Suite any time till 30.9.1992, you'll pay only Rs. 2,700/ - or US $165 plus taxes.

You could also opt to stay in our Luxury Suite with its added amenitoe s at the published rate without the benefit of an offer on room tariff. (Please refer to the Trariff Card enclosed.)

This way you will find out for yourself why people like the President of France and the Prince of Norway chose to stay in our suites.

There are a number of reasons for their choice. One of them is that Welcomgroup Windsor Manor Sheraton is the most elegant hotel in Bangalore, with its own full-fledged business centre – the Manor Club. And also because the suites are luxuriously furnished to take care of every little need you might have.

But this is just one of the reasons. The brochure I'm sending you will tell you all about the hotel and the privileges of staying in a suite.

Do please use the RSVP I'm sending you, indicating when you'd like me to book a suite for you, and send it to me in the reply paid envelope by July 15, 1992.

I look forward to your stay with us.

Sincerely

Nakul Anand

General Manager

P.S: I hope you accept my invitation to come and experience the Magic of the Manor. Of course, you're under no obligation to continue staying in our suites. It depends on how satisfied you are.

Hotel Brochure to CEOs

Page 1 of Windsor Manor Brochure to CEOs
Page 1 of Windsor Manor Brochure to CEOs

The Power of the Word 'Secret' in Advertising

 

Using the word "secret" in direct mail or general advertising is a tried and tested method of grabbing attention. Everyone wants to know secrets. Notice the clarity of the offer and the inclusion of the prices involved. Mentioning the price is always a good idea. It cuts out those who can't afford it which makes it simpler for the advertiser as well as the target audience.

Updated: 09/08/2015, Sarandipity
 
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