Public Relations and Society
PR strategy of Hilton Hotels and Resorts
Module: BUSM 3071
Student no: 10010616
Module Leader: Christian Schnee
Hilton Worldwide is one of the world’s largest hotel companies, which operate more than 3,700 hotels around the globe. The company’s flagship brand, Hilton Hotels and Resorts, has more than 540 properties in 78 countries across six continents. The Company stands as the stylish, innovative leader in the full service segment. As a part of the company’s vision, to stay the leader in the hospitality industry, Hilton Hotels and Resorts is seeking to establish better communication between the company and its publics. Hotel public relations include activities such as press relations, special events planning, newsletters, community relations and many more. Being a global company their main PR function is to focus on “media relations and brand reputation” says John Forrest Ales, Senior Director for global brand PR at Hilton Hotels and Resorts (Ciarallo, 2009). In order to this, with the help of Covalent logic which is an integrated communications firm which providing design, programming and strategy for business and government, Hilton Global Brand Public Relations created the Hilton Global Media Center (HGMC), the hotel industry’s first-ever online media center, and the company’s premier comprehensive online resource for media (Bucci, 2011). The best way to describe this process is gatekeeping theory. In human communication, gatekeeping is the progress through which ideas and information are filtered for publication. The internal decision making progress of relaying or withholding information from the media to the masses (Cassidy, 2006). According to John Forrest Ales, HGMC is one central collection point for reporters to find everything they need, including: access to company releases, photographs and videos, brand fact sheet and history of Hilton Hotels and Resorts, media contact information, media inquiry and many more important information for reporters and also for public. It is one of the best ways to learn about what is happening within their brand and across their hotels. He continues, saying that The Hilton Global Media Center has transformed the way they interact with media and driven a direct increase in their share of voice and media coverage prominence (Bucci, 2011). In this key, the HGMC is the
gatekeeper who decides what information should move to publics and what information should not. Gate keeping is nothing but to block unwanted or useless things by using a gate. So if something bad happening in Hilton Hotels they have power not to publicize. On the other hand, some news must be accessible for publics, for example important events around any of the Hotels, which may influence travelers or Hotel’s guests. The Hilton Global Media Center accomplished several objectives, which included extending PR hospitality to media professionals seeking information about any of the Hilton Hotels & Resorts worldwide in a timely, efficient and accommodating manner and improving the response speed to media queries by leveraging new media. The online media center rejuvenated the brand's languishing reputation as an industry maverick and provided the global network of properties the ability and autonomy to promote their hotels, while also supporting the brand (Bucci, 2011). As a result of hard work, HGMC was successfully planned and delivered in a fast-changing global and local media landscape. Within just three months after the Hilton Global Media Center’s initial launch, the company had a 10 percent increase in media coverage. One aspect of the HGMC that is extremely beneficial is the translation features and tools. Because of this feature, users of 85 different languages have accessed the website. This is something that people could not find in other hospitality businesses (Bucci, 2011). In these cases, when the...
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Ciarallo, J. (2009) Hilton Hotels PR Up for Review. PRNewser [Online]Available from: https://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/hilton-hotels-pr-up-for-review_b2654 [Accessed 15th November 2012].
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University of Washington (2009) Customers Really Matter. [Online] Available from: http://faculty.washington.edu/rfish/is300/present/is300f_hilton.pdf [Accessed 17th November 2012].
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