So long Marriott Rewards, it's time for Marriott Bonvoy
Marriott is saying ahoy to Bonvoy. The global hotel chain announced Wednesday that it is rebranding its rewards program as Marriott Bonvoy and retiring its exisiting loyalty brands Marriott Rewards, Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest. The repositioning follows the disclosure late last year of a data breach at Marriott's Starwood brand—around 383 million customer records were hacked in what the New York Times reported as the largest breach in history.
The new Marriott Bonvoy is not just a loyalty program, according to Stephanie Linnartz, global chief commercial officer at Marriott International, but also unifies the hospitality company's portfolio, which is in 129 countries and territories. The new logo and branding will begin appearing in consumer-facing materials on Feb. 13. The rebranding comes after Marriott folded its namesake, Ritz-Carlton and Starwood brands into one loyalty program in August.
Bethesda, Maryland-based Marriott has been working with Mother Design for two years on the rebranding.
The new name "was born from the idea of 'good travel,' a simple yet powerful concept that conjures the romance and adventure of travel for a worldwide audience," says a spokesman at Mother.
Marriott, which spent $148.6 on measured media in the U.S. in 2017, according to Kantar Media, plans to promote the offering with a multi-million-dollar global media campaign beginning in late February. The chain tapped Publicis Groupe's SapientRazorfish and Spark Foundry to handle its global media last spring.
Hotel brands have been doubling down on loyalty and rewards programs in an effort to get travelers to book directly with their sites, versus through online agencies such as Expedia or through other third parties such as Google. They're also facing competition from Airbnb and other home sharing brands as well.
But building loyalty is an uphill battle as consumers become increasingly brand agnostic. Maritz, a sales and marketing services company, recently found that 29 percent of consumers identify as "resolute" loyalists—in contrast, 68 percent identify as "transient" loyalists swayed by competing brands.