Westin hotel group have announced that they have launched a new initiative – The Westin New Balance Gear Lending program.
The premise of this program is that when you stay at a Westin you don’t have to worry about packing your bulky workout gear, you can just hire it from them! They’ve partnered with New Balance to offer this service.
This is squarely targeting the business traveler who doesn’t have room in their carry-on luggage to fit in their workout gear but who still wants to maintain their fitness while they travel. They’ve tapped into the insight and growing trend that health and fitness is important to a lot of people and they don’t want to compromise on it when they travel.
This insight isn’t new as in March 2012 we reported in What Next that Even Hotels have redesigned their rooms to cater for the fit traveler. Their rooms feature pull up bars and luggage racks that function as a sit-up bench.
I found out about Westin’s new program via Facebook. I “like” Runner’s World on Facebook and they wrote a post about it:
As you can see the reaction has been mixed, and actually leans towards people thinking it is a pretty gross idea. Yes, I have to agree, running in second-hand clothes and shoes doesn’t appeal to me either. But what this says to me is that Westin are a hotel chain that are willing to think about my needs and comfort levels and are willing to go that extra mile to make me happy. It tells me that they think of the small things that can make or break the enjoyment of your trip. Perhaps I’m reading too much into it however, while I probably wouldn’t take advantage of the program (I love my Brooks too much), Westin is now top of mind and on my consideration set the next time I plan a trip. Perhaps that was the whole intention of the campaign?
We live in a cluttered world and I applaud brands like Westin and New Balance who thinks of doing things a little differently to gain that all important cut through and grab my attention.
How about you, would you use this program? Has it put Westin on your radar or do you think it is a load of sweaty rubbish?
Giulianna Stead is a Channel Planner at BCM