Always looking to show that it's more than just a place to gamble, Caesar's Palace offered a special 7/7/07 wedding package for couples who wanted to get married on "the luckiest day in 100 years."
One couple had been together for seven years and shared the same birthday, 7/7. But the couple fell on financial troubles and could no longer afford the package.
With the 7/7 coincidences too strong to ignore, "we decided to give them the wedding of their dreams," says Ken Langdon, director of PR.
Singling out the couple also would help Caesars stand out among the thousands of other weddings taking place that day. One of eight Las Vegas properties operating under Harrah's Entertainment, Caesars wanted to generate national attention, then "layer in as many other stories with our sister properties as we could," Langdon says, "to help provide the news with a bigger piece, but essentially to keep the message all within Harrah's Entertainment."
The team reached out to Harrah's, where Rita Rudner was headlining, and got her to officiate the ceremony. Pastry chef Francois Payard, who is opening a restaurant at Caesars, created a wedding cake. Caesar's also threw a surprise reception in its Absolut Suite. The team pitched NBC News Channel, thinking that if a major national affiliate covered the event, it would feed the package out to its stations across the country. Caesars included the 77 weddings going on at sister property the Flamingo in the pitch.
Print and broadcast coverage included NBC Nightly News, Entertainment Tonight, Good Morning America, the LA Times, and the Chicago Sun-Times, reaching about 18 million people. In addition, the venue used had never hosted a wedding; Caesars has since received requests to book the space for weddings.
Plans are under way for an 8/8/08 event, tied to the significance of the number eight in Asian cultures.
PR team: Caesars Palace (Las Vegas)
Duration: March to July 2007
Budget: About $8,000