Marriott launches campaign to drive direct bookings

Marriott International has launched a new digital campaign, starring Grace Helbig (Grace Helbig Show, It’s Grace) that highlights the benefits for consumers who book their hotel stays directly on The campaign – “#itpaystobookdirect” – uses talent from the digital and social world to go directly to consumers on those channels.

When consumers book on, they receive benefits like the company’s best rate guarantee.  If consumers find a better rate elsewhere, the company’s best rate guarantee will match it and give them an additional 25 percent discount.  In addition to earning points for their stays, Marriott Rewards members enjoy extra benefits, such as free Wi-Fi and mobile check-in, and special deals only available when booking direct on a Marriott channel.

“With this campaign, we want to make sure every consumer knows why it pays to book their stays with us directly, either on, through our Global Reservation Centers, or by contacting the hotel directly,” said Drew Pinto, vice president, distribution strategy for Marriott. “Our guests who book direct get access to our best rates, every room we have available and the most accurate and trustworthy information about our hotels. Booking direct is also best way for customers to personalize their stay with us.”

Each of the 30 and 60 second “#itpaystobookdirect” spots injects humor in communicating the benefits of booking hotel stays directly on The campaign features Grace Helbig jumping into different scenarios to teach people the why it makes more sense to be direct.

In the “Proposal,” (above) Grace rescues a stammering boyfriend who is equating his love for his girlfriend to cheese inside a baked potato.

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In the “Interview,” Grace comes to the aid of a boss asking a recruit ridiculous questions like, “If you could be one aquatic mammal, what would it be?”

In “Scenic Route,” an exasperated Grace helps a lost young couple learn the quickest route to their destination from a gas station attendant who insists they take the scenic route past the house of his best friend Greg who makes scarves out of leaves.

The creative spots will appear as digital video and via digital display ads. Shorter out-takes will appear on Facebook through November. All the videos are also being featured on Marriott’s YouTube channel,

Marriott’s Content Studio led the overall creative development for the campaign partnering with Above Average, an online destination for original comedic videos and written content featuring the industry’s top creators, celebrities, and rising talent. It is the company’s first collaboration with Above Average as part of a recently signed development deal. Above Average is the digital arm of Broadway Video, the production company behind Saturday Night Live and The Tonight Show.

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