2014 Platinum PR Awards: Marketing Communications

Co-Winner: Airbnb - Creative Hospitality

Seeking to raise brand awareness and activate a key local market, Airbnb created the “Hello LA” campaign: a five-day hospitality experience built around five celebrity-curated pop-ups at iconic and un-bookable destinations. Celebrity engagement, press interest and influencer response was so overwhelming that Airbnb expanded this approach, making experiential activations a cornerstone of its 2014 strategy.

Appealing to the creative communities of film and music, the Global Activation campaign injected the brand into massive pop-culture events.

Using “Hello LA” as a catalyst for a wider experiential and event campaign in 2014, Airbnb leveraged its brand equity at the Sundance and SXSW festivals. The “Airbnb Haus” at Sundance welcomed film influencers to partake in activities and serial chats. At SXSW, the “Airbnb Park” showcased artist-curated pop-ups from Snoop Dogg, Capital Cities and Allen Stone—also featuring one-of-a-kind, interactive programming.

Airbnb interacted with 500,000 participants over 15 event days. Total press exceeded 574 million impressions. These major event activations touched consumers, influencers and press, proving Airbnb is where creative hospitality meets fascinating experiences. Attracting enthusiastic engagement and massive earned media, Airbnb built long-lasting relationships with local communities. Reinforcing the brand promise of “creative hospitality,” Airbnb now stands at the intersection of pop culture events and unique experiences.

Co-Winner: PPR Worldwide - Dell Taps Serial Entrepreneur to Bridge the Outside In

Dell is known as a great entrepreneurial success story from the 1980s—the hardware startup launched from a college dorm room and became a multibillion dollar, global technology solutions provider. Despite Dell’s entrepreneurial roots, decades of growth had weakened the company ties to the startup community and led to a gap between the company and these potential stakeholders.

Dell and its agency of record, PPR North America, saw this as an opportunity to help accelerate the impact entrepreneurs can have on the global economy and, furthermore, on Dell’s business.

To maximize touch points with the entrepreneurial community, Dell hired Ingrid Vanderveldt, a serial entrepreneur, investor and media personality and the company’s first entrepreneur-in-residence to work the team’s strategies of events, influencer relations, online engagement and strategic partnerships.

At Dell, Ingrid’s job is to “bring the outside in” by opening up Dell’s resources to business owners seeking to quickly scale and succeed.

By creating an authentic bridge between big business and emerging companies Dell has developed mutually beneficial relationships with fast-growth entrepreneurs, converting them into Dell brand evangelists and encouraging them to grow their businesses with Dell.

In the past year, the program generated 1,200 sales leads and Dell was positioned as a trusted adviser to entrepreneurs in over 1,772 media mentions (reach of 1.2B). Coverage appeared in top outlets including Forbes, CNBC and Fast Company, with CIO Magazine describing Ingrid as the “poster child of corporate EIRs.” During the same period, there were over 16.2K social media posts with a Twitter reach of over 142M.

Honorable Mentions:

  • 451 Marketing – The Yankee Candle Company
  • Baptist Health South Florida - Doctors Hospital "Misses You" Campaign
  • DISH and Southwest Airlines - "TV Flies Free"
  • Edelman - Butterball Embraces the New Thanksgiving Table by Adding Men to the Turkey Talk-Line for the First Time
  • Edelman - Hilton HHonors Travel is Calling You: Spontaneity Challenge
  • Ogilvy Public Relations - Obamacare:  Succeeding Enrollment Goals in California
  • PadillaCRT - Prosciutto di Parma Takes Back its Crown