Here's what the judges (as did I) found attractive about the concept;
a) Peer to Peer Recommendations
b) Crowd Wisdom
c) Guest Sharing
d) Global Connection
e) Local Experiences
I thought to myself - gee, that sounds familiar, essentially, Insiders on a CY Go Board Digital Wall, hard to argue with that. Of course it will be up to Marriott to implement the technology in a way that the data converts to information, remains timely and relevant, and credibly valid. It would be worthwhile, after all of the fanfare, to know the status of last years winner, the healthy vending machine. I also like to visualize how the judges would rate the Digital Wall idea if it came from a boomer .
Being that I had just seen and heard the explanation, I almost skipped Marriott's summary description (shown below) of the winner.....BUT WAIT, a shiny object; the word points caught my attention! To give you a feeling of how it jumped out at me, I enlarged and underlined for your viewing pleasure.
Digital Guest Walls
As Marriott began shifting their focus toward a new target audience a couple of years ago, my marketing instincts reminded me I'd better start learning what the new target audience likes (similar to a team that spends big dollars signing a first round draft pick, once a strategy has big bucks behind it, it's sometimes hard to alter, if for no other reason than the decision makers have personal and sometimes egotistical "skin in the game"). Marriott has successfully captured significant media fanfare with their FlashPerksLocalPerks, Badges, CyberMonday, PointsPlus, Facebook Contests, and Travel Brilliantly campaigns, leaving some of us to inquire, is there any there, there? Regardless of the answer, expect more of the same in the future.
The first rule of marketing is - know your audience
This is why it's important for Insiders to continue appreciating our current millennial members, attract more of them, and listen to what they value. We've done that and discovered several similarities in values. Now I intend to observe, how they value those values, because that seems to really capture Marriott's attention and may provide a heads up of what's coming down the pike.
What say you, non-digital wall contributors?