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Holiday Inn Launches National Television Advertising Campaign

Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts launched a national television advertising campaign this week, the first beyond Nickelodeon since the brand ended the “Mark” campaign in 2002.
An evolution of the ‘Signs’ print campaign introduced in 2003, the four 15-second television ads feature the iconic “Great Sign” against pastoral landscapes that emulate the emotional experience of an driving up to a Holiday Inn property and use a lighthearted approach to call out two of the brand’s key defining hallmarks, full-service restaurants and free high-speed Internet access.

The series of ads, created by Fallon Minneapolis, continues the theme of the print campaign that celebrates the Holiday Inn legacy and targets the values of its core guest, the “Everyday Hero.”

The advertisements began airing March 7 on TBS, TNT, A&E, Travel Channel, CNBC, Fox News, The Weather Channel, MSNBC, CNN, Headline News, ESPN, ESPN2, Fox Sports, FX, Speed, The History Channel and USA networks for a total spend of nearly $10 million, just in time to take advantage of the summer travel season.

“Our goal beginning in 2003 was to reestablish the brand voice, infuse it throughout our marketing efforts, and get it right in print first before moving to television advertising,” said Mark Snyder, senior vice president of brand management for Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts in The Americas. “Our research indicates the print campaign is resonating with our target consumers, so now we’re ready to hit a broader audience with TV and continue to remind our Everyday Heroes that the Holiday Inn brand is real, genuine and down-to-earth, and that we know what matters most to our customers in a hotel stay.”

Holiday Inn and Fallon Minneapolis created the ‘Signs’ campaign in 2003 to be flexible across different mediums. “With Holiday Inn we have a unique opportunity to appeal not only to the rational benefits of the brand, but also the emotional connection that’s embodied in the Great Sign,” said Todd Riddle, group creative director, Fallon Minneapolis. “Evolving ‘Signs’ for television allowed us to explore other textures like music and animation, so we were able to control the pace of how the lines were read in the viewers mind,” he added. “The print is very simple, and we wanted to keep the integrity of that simplicity, but still reward the viewer for watching.”


Beyond the nearly $10 million for Holiday Inn television in 2005, the remainder of the $14M budget is dedicated to airport, print, billboard and online advertising. Airport dioramas are currently in-market in Atlanta, Denver and Chicago, and print executions continue to rotate through USA Today, Time, Money and US News & World Report. Online outlets complement the cable TV buys, with ads funning on,,,,, and Billboards will go up this summer in key feeder markets, and a new brand spot aimed at family travel is scheduled to launch in early May, closer to the peak summer travel months.