|Starwood Reinvents Hotel Loyalty Landscape with First-of-Its-Kind Benefits for Global Mega Travelers|
Starwood Preferred Guest Launches Richest Elite Traveler Benefits in History Including 24-Hour Check-in, One-to-One Starwood Ambassador and Lifetime Status
Services Aimed at Small but
Starwood Preferred Guest gets a new look inspired by actual Members. (Photo: Business Wire)
“With globalization trends, there are more mega travelers than ever before going to more places around the world,” said Frits van Paasschen, President and CEO of Starwood. “The opportunity to cultivate what we call ‘loyalty beyond reason’ with the world’s most frequent travelers has never been greater. These are sophisticated consumers who have become jaded by generic points and perks. This is why we’ve invested in distinct new and personal benefits to truly reward those who reward us with a disproportionate amount of their business.”
Three Year Pilot Aimed at Most Profitable Travelers Inspires New Changes
According to van Paasschen, just two percent of travelers drive 30 percent of Starwood’s profits. With that in mind, the company spent the last three years quietly piloting a highly personal one-on-one ambassador service to better understand the needs and desires of these very powerful guests. Across the small, select sample of travelers, Starwood saw a double-digit share shift compared to a control group. Starwood took insights from this pilot to develop new benefits aimed at its elite Members.
“What we heard loud and clear from travelers was that they wanted more choice, more control and more personal service,” said Mark Vondrasek, Senior Vice President, Distribution, Loyalty & Partnership Marketing. “Today, through high touch and high tech, we have a newfound ability to better understand our guests, their preferences and even the nature of each unique trip. By delivering a whole new definition of choice and personal services, we’re moving beyond a purely points arms race to instead build loyalty for life.”
Turning an ancient hotel convention on its head, Starwood is for the
first time ever abolishing the industry’s long-standing
Ultimate in Personal Service for Most Prolific Travelers
Building upon its successful pilot program, Starwood is expanding its innovative one-to-one service which matches its best travelers with personal ambassadors. Now, all Members who stay 100 nights annually are invited to participate in this unique service designed to provide the ultimate in tailored experiences across all 1100+ Starwood hotels. What separates this from a traditional travel concierge program is the unique personal relationship between Member and ambassador. Starwood’s ambassadors work one-on-one with guests to understand their preferences and what matters to them on each trip to deliver a customized experience on property. Ambassadors also provide services beyond the hotel and are even empowered to assist guests when they’re not traveling.
Starwood to Reward Loyalty with Lifetime Status
To show its appreciation for its most loyal and enduring travelers, Starwood Preferred Guest is introducing SPG LifetimeTM status. Now Members who have stayed 250 nights total and maintained elite status for at least five years (consecutive or not) are awarded SPG Lifetime Gold status. Members with 500 total nights and 10 years of Platinum SPG status (consecutive or not) will enjoy their top tier status for life.
The Lowdown on Loyalty: Starwood Enhances Benefits for all Elite Members and the More You Stay, the Richer and More Personal it Gets
“Our goal is to make SPG so rich that it’s impossible for mega travelers not to choose Starwood,” said Vondrasek. “We also want to make the program wildly aspirational for all frequent travelers. And because we know that many of our Members are also Members of other hotel loyalty programs, we believe these upgrades give travelers a compelling reason to consolidate their travel with us. With this in mind, we have enriched all of our elite offerings, ratcheting up the proposition as Members stay more.”
To learn more about these exciting SPG changes that give Members more
control over their hotel experience visit spg.com/morepower.
All benefits begin
SPG Gets a New Look Inspired By Actual Members
To celebrate its new benefits, SPG is updating its brand identity with a
new look inspired by the rich personalities of its Members. SPG
conducted a casting call for Members to participate in photo shoots with
famed portrait photographer
Visit spg.com/members to hear personal stories from these Members about their relationship with SPG. Additional casting calls are taking place around the world in 2012. Follow SPG on Facebook.com/spg to learn about the latest locations.
About Starwood Preferred Guest
The SPG program’s breakthrough policy of No Blackout Dates at the world’s most sought after collection of hotels, reinvented the hospitality loyalty program when it launched in 1999. By creating a program centered on its Members, SPG has developed the most passionate and knowledgeable membership base in the hotel loyalty space. Through its use of new technologies and innovative channels such as SPG.com, SPG.com/stayconnected, SPG.com/flights and others, SPG continues to innovate and lead the industry. By offering No Blackouts on standard rooms at over 1,000 hotels and resorts in nearly 100 countries, No Blackouts on hundreds of airlines, and once in a lifetime experiences available through SPG Moments at spg.com/moments, the program has proven to be a big draw for the world’s most frequent travelers, and a significant competitive advantage for Starwood. For more information about Starwood Preferred Guest please visit SPG.com.
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