Marriott launches hospitality industry's first media network – Marketing Dive

Marriott is getting into the media network game, giving advertisers an omnichannel solution for reaching high-intent travelers on the path to purchase, pre-arrival and during their stay. The network aims to provide premium ad inventory over a variety of Marriott’s owned channels on which brands can deliver curated experiences.
With the rollout, Marriott is a first-mover in the hospitality industry to adopt a media network. Over the last few years, media networks have seen explosive growth in the retail category as brands such as Walmart, CVS, Albertsons and Macy’s ramp up their ad sales divisions and reap revenue rewards. In kind, ad holding groups including WPP and Publicis have increased investments and partnerships related to retail media.
While initially targeted at travelers in the U.S. and Canada, Marriott plans to expand its platform globally, offering advertisers the opportunity to get in front of the 164 million members of its Bonvoy loyalty program. To gather valuable first-party data, Marriott has worked to boost Bonvoy in a variety of ways, embracing emerging digital platforms like TikTok and nonfungible tokens
The Marriott Media Network is a full-stack collaboration with Yahoo. The Yahoo SSP will serve as the exclusive access point for the network, and the global Yahoo ad sales team will leverage the company’s DSP to lead demand generation and sales across the network and Marriott’s paid media. Yahoo claims the integrated approach allows advertisers and publishers to see more value in their content, audiences and marketing.
The media network comes as consumers return to pre-pandemic activities like travel, despite the continuing effects of pandemic and rising inflation. Marriott in the first quarter of 2022 saw the largest surge in global demand since the COVID-19 crisis began, per its latest earnings report. The company exceeded Wall Street estimates but gave cautious guidance for the future, per Barron’s.
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The Gen Z retailer looks to immerse consumers in celebrations as company research found this holiday season is all about “revenge living.” 
Old tensions with CPGs resurface amid whispers that retail media is unprofitable and increasingly a cost of doing business with merchants.
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