Client: Allegro Resorts (Miami)
Client: Allegro Resorts (Miami)
PR Team: JGR & Associates (Miami)
Campaign: Fly for Free in Your Bathing Suit
Time Frame: January 24 to February 5, 2000
Budget: About dollars 100,000
Only someone from a hot climate could think of this.
When her Miami firm, JGR & Associates, became the agency for Allegro
Resorts, account manager Darcy Brito had about 10 days to prepare a
kickoff promotion for her client’s property in Turks and Caicos, the
eight-island Caribbean chain. Her objective: to draw attention to the
resort by holding a media event at Kennedy Airport on the day of the
first non-stop flight from New York to Providenciales, the island on
which the 300-room resort is located.
Brito decided to invite the public to JFK to enter a contest for a free
cruise. Ten couples would be chosen in a random drawing to fly out that
day. Winners would receive free airfare and a vacation valued at dollars
But there was a twist. ’With the temperature at 30 degrees at JFK and
snow on the ground, what better thing to do than have (contestants) show
up in their bathing suits?’ Brito says.
The client loved the idea, but Brito had three obstacles to
First, Allegro’s target demographic - affluent executives - is hard to
reach. Plus, the resort wanted to reach Spanish-speakers because of the
large Latino population in New York.
Second, how to entice contestants? Registration was at 10 am. ’Imagine
getting people out of bed on a Saturday in below freezing weather to go
to the airport in their bathing suits!’ Brito points out.
Third, the New York media market is chock-full of competing stories each
day. Even on a Saturday, a major story could blow the swimsuit promo off
Brito overcame the problem of enticing people into the contest by
blitzing the market. She met her demographic challenges by contacting
outlets in both English and Spanish and emphasizing the exclusiveness of
the all-inclusive resort. ’’It’s the Caribbean’s best-kept secret’ has
now become the slogan,’ she says.
JGR partnered with an English-language general market radio station, two
Latin radio stations and a Latin music Web site, lamusica.com, to tout
A week before the event, Brito posted a press release on Business Wire
and the Associated Press date book.
She also sent a pitch letter announcing the promotion and what it
entailed to all metropolitan radio and television stations and daily
newspapers, along with 11 college radio stations. Brito was so
persistent with follow-up telephone calls that during her final reminder
’the media said, ’yeah, we know’ before I could get two words out,’ she
On February 5, the day of the event, she sent a photo release to 650 top
dailies in key markets across the country.
As for story competition, Brito had DS Simon Productions, New York,
shoot a b-roll of the contest, so stations short of crews would have
The 4-1/2-minute video package captured a line of contestants at a JFK
ticket counter with snow banks piled up outside. Then, the winners were
chosen. The b-roll was sent out via satellite later that day.
Most of the 30 people who registered were young professionals, as
Allegro wanted. Half heard about the contest from the radio, half from
There were 50 print news clips, including The New York Times, which ran
a photograph in its Metro section.
JGR’s radio partners covered the contest live.
There were 367 TV hits nationwide, and 238 stations picked up the
b-roll. All the major TV networks ran a piece, but most New York-area
film crews were called away to a big fire in Queens and therefore relied
on the b-roll.
The Internet delivered big, resulting in stories on Yahoo!; Bloomberg,
an aviation publication, Avweb Newswire - and about 100 more Web
Allegro was ’extremely happy,’ says Brito. ’It definitely raised the bar
in terms of events I will be organizing.’