Hilton tackles “Vacationitis”

MCLEAN, VA—Hilton Hotels & Resorts has identified an epidemic among its employees and potential guests, and is taking steps to treat the problem. 

The disease is “Vacationitis,” which Hilton defines as “an epidemic creating high levels of stress and claiming countless hours of unused vacation time as it spreads among employees who have not taken enough time off.”

Vacationitis has a number of symptoms. Some sufferers have acute retinal monitoritis—caused by staring at a computer screen to long. Others have commuteritis, due to excessive time spent travelling to and from work. Severe cases have interpersonal drone disorder—they make it through the day in a zombie-like manner.

The cure? Hilton is encouraging working professionals everywhere to use their hard-earned vacation days and enjoy leisure time with friends and family.

Use it or lose it
Hilton Hotels & Resorts launched Vacationitis in January 2013. The most recent activation was “International Use It or Lose It Week,” Nov. 18-22, 2013, which encouraged people to use up their vacation days.

“Visitors to the Hilton Urgent Vacation Care Center will find a short quiz that will diagnose vacation needs and provide customized prescriptions urging people to take breaks, weekend getaways and longer vacations,” Rob Palleschi, global head, Hilton Hotels & Resorts told CLN.

“Needs are matched with leisure recommendations across the globe for working professionals to get away. Working professionals are advised to seek aid immediately if they show signs of 14 distinct symptoms of Vacationitis, including ‘Straight to Voicemailaria,’ a chronic avoidance of client calls, or ‘Replyallgia,’ the result of a flood of ‘reply all’ emails.”
Hilton Hotels & Resorts along with its agency partner Murphy O’Brien developed the “Vacation Diagnostic Test.”

Humorous illustrations developed by Onion Labs, the in-house creative team of The Onion, run alongside each symptom on the Hilton Urgent Vacation Care Center website and can be shared on social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Building awareness
The goals of the campaign were to support wider brand efforts to drive incremental leisure revenue, build brand awareness among leisure customers and strengthen brand social engagement, according to Palleschi.

Media success
Palleschi shared numbers from the campaign, from Jan. 14, 2013 through Nov. 24, 2013.

“We’ve seen great media success of 160 total placements and a total audience reach of 919,434,974,” he said. “Additionally, the Hilton Urgent Vacation Care Center has received 64,532 overall visits to the website (January 14 through June 30, 2013), 22,654 visitors completed the quiz and 8,136 people signed up for the HiltonVIP newsletter.

“This campaign resonated with our target audience because it was unique and approached an important workplace concern with humor,” Palleschi said. “If companies are looking to build brand awareness among leisure customers and strengthen brand social engagement, creating innovative marketing campaigns tied to the brand can yield great results.”