Rosewood Hotels and Resorts Rosewood Hotels and Resorts L. L. C. is faced with a marketing dilemma; they want to increase multi-property guest stays with out diminishing the current brand images of their existing properties. In order to increase awareness of the other properties to those who are currently loyal to particular estates, Rosewood has considered adding a corporate brand title to all of its properties.
The problem lies in whether or not this will “cheapen” the experience for those who feel as though they are getting away from the “cookie-cutter norm” of other corporate luxury hotel chains. Conclusion Rosewood should not add its name to existing properties until it has developed its brand image into being synonymous with a unique luxury experience. Reason
The thing that has set Rosewood’s estates apart from places like The Ritz and Four Seasons is that the people who stay at the Rosewood properties enjoy them because of the uniqueness of each individual property, and the lack of the feeling that corporate involvement tends to bring with it, whether they know that there is a corporation behind it or not. The name Rosewood does not mean anything to most of the customers, so for this reason, even though Rosewood is respected within the industry, a lot of the travel agents do not seem to really push the name Rosewood.
Evidence Exhibit 7 offers selected quotes from the Strategic Marketing Solutions Report on Rosewood’s Branding. All of the information provided in Exhibit 7 points to the fact that most of the people who stay at Rosewood’s hotels do not know or care about the name Rosewood. Some of the quotes are as follows. Travel Agent: “Perhaps 25% know the name Rosewood. They know the hotel name better. ” Travel Agent: “Not much. I book the hotel, not Rosewood,” when asked what Rosewood meant to the agent or his clients.
This information goes to show that the kind of people interested in staying at a Rosewood hotel are strictly looking for a unique luxury experience, with brand image and/or loyalty remaining at the particular hotel and not Rosewood, so before we start messing with well established brands we should first inform the customer base as to who Rosewood actually is, with the main emphasis on the fact that Rosewood has made most of these properties what they are today, and that they are not just some big bag of money that has taken over. First we need to look at the numbers.
The current total number of unique guests is 115,000, and of these guests, 19,169 are repeat guests (Exhibit 8). Of the repeat guests only 5,750 are multi-property stays, and this is the number we need to work on first in order to start establishing the Rosewood brand. If we can increase this number before we go throwing the name Rosewood all over our properties, then when people find out that Rosewood was behind the scenes from the beginning, it has the potential to spark interests in exactly what all Rosewood may have to offer.
Since it costs more to go out and get new customers, we should focus on the ones we already have, with particular interest shown to the repeat guests that have only stayed at one particular hotel. It is obvious that this particular group of people is satisfied with what Rosewood has to offer in the lines of luxury and service; now we need to let them know that there is more on the table than just that one hotel.
The problem faced here is, “How do we let them know that their favorite place to stay is actually owned and/or managed by a corporation with out alienating them? ” I think that providing them with an accurate history of the company and presenting them with the facts is the best and least intrusive way to get the information to the customers. This can be done through staff, literature such as brochures, and electronically via e-mail and links to the other hotels’ websites.
If it is done in such a way that presents the information as lore and not a public service announcement, then I think that the current customers will accept it. We should also make sure that the multi-property guests know that there is a connection between the various hotels, and that if they like what they see, there is more where that came from. Once we have established a link between the various properties with our current customers; real, hardcore branding can occur.
Now that we have acclimated our current customers to our name, we can start reaching new customers with an established reputation for luxury, “Just ask the people who stay at any Rosewood estate…” This process should be gradual. If it works like it should, it will be difficult to observe the transformation. After time, though, people will have truly branded the name Rosewood for us, and that is when we step in with something like Rosewood @ Caneel Bay, or King Pacific Lodge a Rosewood estate.