Best of the Best PR


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As 2015 comes to a close, we begin to see the rankings of all the “bests” of the year. As January and February 2016 quickly approach, we anticipate award shows such as the Oscars, People’s Choice Awards and Grammy Awards, to find out who was the best in the music, television and films of 2015. Websites release rankings: Top 10 best colleges of 2015, top breakout artists, top football teams and the lists go on. And here in the world of PR we have our top lists too.

So who will make the list of top rated public relations campaigns of 2015? In order to see what the best of PR within the travel and hospitality sector looks like, I checked out the Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)’s 58th Annual Adrian Awards winners of 2014. Here are some of the top public relations campaigns awarded and why they deserved this accolade:

  1. AKA (Quinn and Ballentines PR) launch of “World’s First Mobile Hotel Suite” The goal of AKA was to make the brand stand out by developing an idea involving an Airstream. To accomplish this goal, the CEO stressed the objectives of AKA. The first objective was to clearly communicate with the public how important luxury, innovation and lifestyle is to AKA. The second objective was to strike the curiosity of sophisticated consumers about AKA Beverly Hills by getting stories in appropriate outlets. The third objective was simply to get more business flowing into AKA Beverly Hills. To accomplish these objectives, they created the world’s first mobile hotel suite, which was a “silver suite on wheels…decked out with AKA signature comforts” ( The campaign resulted in a 30% occupancy increase in Beverly Hills and over 100 million media impressions. Way to go Quinn and Ballentines.
  2. Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection (Mardiks PR) implementation of Travel Protection AirCare campaign The goal of this campaign was to launch CEO John Noel’s new company, Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection through it’s first product, Aircare. The objectives included building awareness to the company’s target audiences, introduce AirCare to the public, and make the public aware of Noel’s return to the travel industry. To do this, the company kicked off it’s opening with AirCare, which was the simplest, least expensive travel insurance. The laugh of Aircare resulted in 187 million media impressions in five short months. Impressive, Mardiks.
  3. The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism (Mfa Ltd. Missy Farren and Associates) create National Geographic Traveler Feature The goal for this campaign was to receive a feature in National Geographic about the beauty, culture and history of the Cayman Islands in order to attract tourists. The strategy this PR team used was to approach a journalist at the annual Cayman Cookout event and offer an extended visit to experience the Cayman Islands. This exclusive experience resulted in a feature story in National Geographic raving about the island experiences to an audience of 735,453 readers. I’d like to think it wasn’t too hard to convince that journalist to take an extended visit. Where can I sign up?

Amongst many other PR agencies that took their tactics to the next level to satisfy their client, these three stood out as the most outstanding on the HSMAI’s award list for 2014. I’m curious to see who will make the list for 2015. Any guesses?


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