Hilton taps MediaCom for global media after closed review

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Credit: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

Hilton has selected WPP's MediaCom as its media agency of record for cross-channel planning and traditional media buying following a review.

A Hilton spokesman confirmed the selection to Ad Age in an emailed statement. "We selected MediaCom for its ability to help us reach our target audiences worldwide with our message of unmatched hospitality," the spokesman said.

Hilton has more than 5,300 hotels in 106 countries and territories, according to the company.

MediaCom referred questions to the client.

The incumbent on the account was was Publicis Media's Digitas. In March, Hilton rival Marriott selected a Publicis Groupe team called Marriott One Media to handle that hotel chain's global media business.

McLean, Virginia-based Hilton, which operates 14 brands, has been trying to innovate in recent years to appeal to more modern customers even as Airbnb grows its own market share. The company in 2016 introduced Tru by Hilton, a millennial-focused brand. Late last year, Hilton opened an Innovation Gallery to showcasing new technologies near its headquarters.

Last November, Hilton appointed TBWA its global creative agency. The hotel chain has also been promoting direct bookings, as opposed to booking with online travel agencies, with its wide-reaching "Stop Clicking Around" campaign. Such efforts appear to be paying off: Hilton generated $2.1 billion in total revenue for the first quarter of 2018, a 10 percent rise over the year-earlier period.

Hilton says it will continue to work with iProspect, its digital agency of record.

Last year, Hilton spent $60.4 million on measured media in the U.S., according to Kantar Media. Comvergence, an international research company that tracks agency pitches, estimates Hilton's global media spend at $90 million, while consultancy R3 estimates the global spend at around $150 million.

Contributing: Adrianne Pasquarelli

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