PacRim Marketing Group and PRTech were engaged by Highgate Hotels to create recognition and demand for ‘Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach from Japan, Korea and China markets.

‘Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach

Situation

PacRim Marketing Group and PRTech were engaged by Highgate Hotels to create recognition and demand for ‘Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach from Japan, Korea and China markets. 

Challenge

Popular among the Japanese market, the Pacific Beach Hotel was acquired by Highgate Hotels and went through a multi-million-dollar renovation and was rebranded as ‘Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach. As this was a totally new brand and Highgate Hotels not being known in Asia, PacRim Marketing Group and PRTech were engaged to market ‘Alohilani to the Japan, Korean and Chinese markets.

Action

PacRim Marketing Group was tasked with working on their grand opening events in early 2018, including a party where PacRim helped coordinate and invite influential media coordinators and VIPs, creating collateral in different languages and writing and distributing press releases and media materials. After a successful opening, PacRim continued to handle ‘Alohilani’s PR efforts while PRTech was tasked with creating Japanese, Korean and Chinese websites utilizing PRTech’s proprietary online reservation system, MyRez.

Results

The ‘Alohilani Resort brand started to gain recognition among the Asian markets as a luxury-level hotel located right across from world-famous Waikiki Beach. Top iconic media in Asia such as Vogue Taiwan and Elle Taiwan, Grazia Korea, Cosmopolitan Korea, Omosan Street, Leon, and most recently Dazed Korea (featuring popular Korean celebrity Cho Yeo-jeong from the movie Parasite), have requested media tie-ups with ‘Alohilani.

For 2019, PR efforts secured an advertising value equivalency of more than $3 million, with more than 77 million impressions, a large increase over the prior year.  Half-year efforts in 2018 resulted in an ad value of $560,000. Media success was due in part to creating news releases and pitches tailored to the Asia visitor market, rather than simply repurposing the English-language campaigns.  Leveraging relationships with media, locally based media coordinators and Asia-based contacts was also vital.  Alohilani continues to receive numerous media inquiries from all Asia markets as the brand is gaining more traction in Asia.

As for the ‘Alohilani websites, since launching in mid-2019, the Asian language websites continue to reach potential customers and secure in-language hotel bookings, increasing direct-channel revenue from the Asia market.  The brand is better-aligned with travel partner and media efforts, and facilitates customer relationship management and reservations. Building on this success, PacRim Marketing Group and PRTech have subsequently expanded our web services and reservations system to other Highgate properties in Hawaii including Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel, Ambassador Hotel Waikiki, Park Shore Waikiki, and Pearl Hotel Waikiki, working in Japanese, Korean and Chinese. In total, 15 custom websites were created for Highgate, with a timeline of 6-8 weeks per custom design.