THE 14TH ANNUAL SHORTY AWARDS

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From the 8th Annual Shorty Awards

Run With A View

Entered in Hospitality

About this entry

Several years ago, Westin Hotels & Resorts launched RunWESTIN, a signature running program laddering up to the brand's holistic Well-being Movement. RunWESTIN's offerings help guests stay active while on the road through: local running maps helping guests explore their local destination through wellness; a Gear Lending service and global partnership with New Balance allowing guests to borrow sneakers and workout apparel; and at most properties, a local Run Concierge to lead morning runs for guests, provide tips and tricks on training and more.

To elevate RunWESTIN in 2015, Westin conceptualized "Run With a View," a National Running Day campaign encouraging guests, property associates and the running community to share "wellness moments" and photos of their favorite running spots throughout the day. The event kicked off at The Westin Pasadena with a 5k run hosted by Sophia Bush and national RunWESTIN Concierge Chris Heuisler, and continued with events across North America involving the participation of Westin associates and guests.

By capitalizing on the buzz surrounding National Running Day, Westin aimed to raise awareness for its unique RunWESTIN offerings and work with National Run Concierge Chris Heuisler, an influential member of the running community. In addition to driving traffic to Westin's social channels via an event-specific hashtag, "Run With A View" was designed to reach new audiences who were both interested in wellness and intent on having travel experiences that would allow them to be healthy on the road and while getting to know their chosen destination through wellness.

Why does this entry deserve to win?

"Run With A View" was designed to raise awareness for the RunWESTIN program and all of its elements with a nation-wide event that tapped into the buzz surrounding National Running Day. Westin engaged actress Sophia Bush, whose fitness regimen is often covered in the press, to host a 5K run alongside Chris Heuisler, open to guests, media and influencers in the wellness space. In addition to promoting the run on the actress's social channels, photos of Sophia and Chris were seeded to top tier fitness and celebrity outlets to further build upon her participation.

To launch "Run With A View" at multiple locations simultaneously, Westin hosted 5K runs for its associates to both reignite their passion for the brand and giving them the chance to act as program ambassadors who could interact with the target audience on a more personal level. Their participation helped demonstrate how the Westin experience extends beyond guest rooms and public spaces, showing guests firsthand how RunWESTIN could help them explore new destinations on foot using running maps and the expertise of location-specific Run Concierge staff. The associates similarly personified how Westin leads the hospitality industry in making it easy for guests to stay healthy while traveling

With messaging that highlighted Westin's commitment to health and wellness, the social initiative targeted a wide audience: Westin guests and fans on the RunWESTIN program; Westin associates at properties across North America; travelers who were not aware of RunWESTIN, Westin's running maps, or run concierges; consumers committed to wellness, who might add Westin to their consideration set when planning their next business or leisure trip; the national running community, which includes hundreds of thousands of people who travel for races all over the world.

As a social campaign, "Run With A View" leveraged existing #runwestin conversations to build momentum and introduce #runwithaview to new audiences. Westin created a nationwide PR and social "Run With A View" toolkit that outlined criteria for any Westin property to host the on-site 5K activations, which at some properties were complemented by a healthy pre-run breakfast made possible by Westin's existing partnership with SuperFoodsRx. Westin implemented an aggressive pitching strategy focused on wellness, run, travel, celebrity/entertainment, tech to infiltrate different genres of media with key brand messaging.

Across the campaign, Westin enforced messaging that encapsulated the brand's expertise in blending travel, fitness, and technology through innovative activations that utilize social media components to engage the running community. "Run With A View" demonstrated that RunWESTIN is available to runners of all experience levels, with routes designed for beginners, distance runners and speedsters, and that elements like the Gear Lending program show how Westin acts as a partner in wellness for its guests and associates. In a broader sense, the initiative illustrated how Westin's Well-Being Movement goes beyond running and exercise. Westin is committed to helping guests find a restful night's sleep, a delicious meal infused with super foods, active fun, a more productive work space, or a combination of it all.

Results

Overall, 52 Westin properties hosted "Run With A View" 5K runs, with nearly 1400 associates participating in the events across the country. The runs produced 520+ social media posts that generated 3.3 million social impressions and 94K engagements. The @westin follower count on Instagram grew 17% during the first month of the activation. On Sophia Bush's Instagram handle, her post about #runwithaview and #runwestin generated 93,000 likes and 727 comments.

Feature coverage highlighted "Run With A View," the RunWESTIN program, Westin's Well-Being Movement, and Westin's leadership of the wellness hospitality space, generating more than 111 million media impressions in outlets including Runner's World, EOnline, Yahoo!, Aol, Page Six, LA Times, Radar online, and more.

Media

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Westin Hotels & Resorts

Links