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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

TikTok Communities Connect IRL at Sheraton

Entered in Short Form Video


The IDEA:  Sheraton is providing people (travelers and locals) with another reason to come on property – to gather. 

The GOAL:  Build awareness of Sheraton as The World's Gathering Place. 

With public spaces designed to create a welcoming environment for guests and locals to connect in unique and innovative ways, Sheraton is the place to gather. Its redesigned lobby areas include studio meeting spaces, community tables, soundproof booths, and other amenities offering an alternative to meetups in office buildings or coffee shops. 

To showcase Sheraton as a gathering place, we developed a series of experiential weekends called Sheraton IRL at which creators from communities built online (i.e., TikTok) convened in real life to connect, collaborate and create in Sheraton's community-centric spaces.

Strategy and Execution

On TikTok, community is more than just sharing videos and consuming content. It’s about real people connecting through mutual interests and shared passions. Everyone can find their own “side” of TikTok. 

To drive awareness of Sheraton as a physical gathering place, we focused on TikTok communities whose members are aligned with Sheraton’s target guest. Our plan was, and is, to collaborate with TikTokers who share a passion for productivity, meaningful relationships, and growth (whether personal or business). While the creators’ followers and reach were considered in the identification process, we were looking for characteristics that weren’t so easily quantifiable, such as commitment to sharing and learning, patience, and curiosity. Our goal was to work with creators who had the desire to connect IRL and the ability to speak as well as listen.

Sheraton IRL Denver focused on the #SmallBusinessTok community. Seven TikTokers convened at  Sheraton Denver to share their passion for entrepreneurship. Event highlights included a brand-building workshop in the hotel’s studio spaces and the unveiling of the first TikTok Creator Marketplace in the lobby. We asked the Tiktokers to build on their learnings from the workshop and create videos for a net new business. 

Our TikTok collaborators in this event were:

Representatives of the #SoloTravelTok community connected at Sheraton IRL Rhodes to share their passion for travel. Event highlights included a taste of the brand’s new Gatherings by Sheraton program and a Solo Travel Tips TikTok challenge.

Our TikTok collaborators in this event were:

Intentionally curated programming offered a springboard for these Tiktokers to capture Sheraton’s community-centric spaces and offerings in an authentic way through short-form video, showcasing the brand through a modern and social-first lens.

The creators were tasked with creating a <60s TikTok about their experience gathering IRL with other members of their digital community. However, creators went above and beyond their contracted deliverables with 300+ pieces of added-value content that they shared pre-event, during the event, and post-event.


Creator deliverables were sparked on TikTok, which allowed Sheraton to have a presence on the app and reach new, younger audiences without needing an active brand page.

Sheraton IRL Denver Results:

Sheraton IRL Rhodes Results (Inclusive of TikTok BLS):

While the campaigns were not goaled against revenue, sentiment analysis included comments expressing consideration and intent to book: 

In addition to the creator content, we had a production crew onsite to capture content to showcase Sheraton as connection point on other social channels (EX1 & EX2). 

An unanticipated win for the program was the feel-good effect from this pairing of creators and brand outside of the traditional influencer engagement model. Our digital creators remarked that the work that they do and the lives that they lead can be lonely and isolating. They embraced the opportunity to connect IRL not just as a paid gig, but also as an opportunity to develop relationships, collaborate, learn, and grow.


Video for TikTok Communities Connect IRL at Sheraton

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Sheraton Hotels & Resorts


Entry Credits