MINNEAPOLIS: Carlson Hotels Worldwide is midway through its search for a new AOR for Radisson Hotels & Resorts, with a decision to be made in August.
An RFP was issued in late spring for the account. Joan Cronson, director of PR for Carlson Hotels Worldwide, which also includes the Regent and Park Plaza hotel and resort brands, said the company is seeking national PR support for Radisson, focused mainly in North America, but with some global capability as well. Initially, the firm will focus on b-to-b relations and “more corporate branding” duties within the hotel industry, according to Cronson. She would not specify the number of firms being considered, saying only that the list has been narrowed to “a handful.”
Moreover, Cronson would not comment on the firms in the running because that information hasn't been shared with the firms. However, she did reveal that the two firms Radisson has been working with, Axiom Marketing Communications and Fast Horse, are not being considered for the AOR assignment. Both firms, however, will continue working with the company on projects and campaigns. Axiom is providing PR services for Country Inn & Suites for the brand's summer promotion and Fast Horse has been providing PR services for the Radisson brand for its summer promotion.
“They're not involved in this process," she said. "We're using them for marketing and we're still working with them,”
Axiom declined to comment; Fast Horse deferred to Carlson for comment.
“It's an opportunity to look at some new ideas,” Cronson said. She pinpointed green and social media as new areas of expertise the company is interested in exploring with its new AOR. “If one agency has many of those strengths under one umbrella, that would add value.”