Fairmont opens up to e-books

For its latest partnership, the hotel chain hooks up with Random House and the Kobo eReader.


Fairmont Hotels is becoming known for partnerships with brands like BMW, Adidas and Cirque du Soleil, and now they can add Random House and the Kobo eReader to the list.

Members of the Fairmont President’s Club (FPC) who stay on Fairmont Gold (a private luxury floor of the hotel) are now provided with an eReader stocked with Random House titles, and receive a $2-off offer on Random House titles when they return the reader. The program is currently running at 10 hotels in North America, and will be expanded if successful.
Fairmont is promoting the partnership with extensive collateral material including check-in slips, posters throughout the hotels, ads in Fairmont magazine and in all FPC communications. (All creative done in-house.)

The Random House partnership also extends to author events, such as a recent meet and greet with Life of Pi author Yann Martel at the Royal York in Toronto. Martel was also interviewed by the CBC’s Jian Ghomeshi, with the interview broadcast on his radio show Q. Only FPC members are invited to these events as a perk, which gets them to visit the hotels even when they’re not staying there, explains Alexandra Blum, executive director, brand development and partnerships at Fairmont.

A partnership between a publisher and a hotel chain may not seem like an obvious connection, but as Blum explains, it makes perfect sense for their target. ‘The research that we have done around passion communities has been invaluable,’ she says, noting that it reinforced what they already believed about the interests of their affluent target group. ‘Health and wellness, food and wine, arts, culture, literature – these are all incredibly important.’

With a division dedicated solely to partnerships, Blum says that they have been a highly effective way for Fairmont to maximize its marketing budget and compete with the bigger chains, noting the success of the Fit program with Adidas – the press it generated and the fact that J.D. Power guest satisfaction scores increased. And, she says, stay tuned for more big partnership announcements in the coming months.