afaqs! news bureau

OYO celebrates the spark that keeps long-term relationships alive in the run-up to Valentine’s Day

The sweet little ad also points to a unique 2021 travel trend – familiarity is your best choice.

There is nothing more endearing than a sweet little ‘tu-tu main-main’ between couples. Yes, some of you may cringe, but when it’s from the heart, it’s heart melting for yours truly.

This is exactly what happened when we (afaqs!) watched OYO’s new spot, the first of four in the month of February. Called #YeRishtaHaiKhiska and featuring actress Neena Gupta and Swanand Kirkire, the 30-second spot features a conversation between an elderly (not too elderly) couple, and the million-dollar question as they unpack in their OYO hotel room, “Are you bored?”.

One could say the question was about the relationship after all these years, but we know that in this case, it’s about the hotel room. Yes, monotony can become a hazard but in this climate, there’s nothing more comforting than familiarity when it comes to a hotel room.

Both, the concept of the campaign and script of the films were written by OYO’s in-house global brand team, with support from Oink Films on production.

Commenting on OYO’s data-driven approach towards its campaign, Yatish Jain - Chief Growth Officer - OYO Hotels & Homes, India & South Asia said, “As the world’s largest technology-led hospitality chain, data runs deep through OYO’s DNA. We believe that speaking with our consumers directly and understanding them better will enable us to provide the best guest experiences, as well as, ensure sustainable growth in the long term for OYO. This Valentine’s Day, we wanted to cut through the clutter, launch a campaign that speaks to our target audience by connecting at a personal level."

"Once our data showcased that women were the key decision-makers, we sat with a problem statement - How to increase consideration amongst women but at the same time, appeal to all our other existing and potential consumers. And the creative answer to this was simple yet impactful - ‘Long term relationship with OYO’ represented by a strong female protagonist - Neena Gupta, the metaphorical play on relationships and that all are welcome at OYO. We hope our consumers resonate with this campaign.”

Speaking on the campaign, Mayur Hola, Head of Global Brand - OYO Hotels & Homes said, “All of us who've been in a relationship know that we rely on women to make all the decisions. They just make better decisions. When we chatted 1:1 with our guests, women in particular, the same pattern applied to the room booking decision. This campaign simply and charmingly reflects that reality. Whether it is the same hotel and room that we see a high repeat usage of from our guests or indeed a bathing suit being picked or the decision to step out, Neena takes all the calls. As it is in real life, as it should be.

He added, “OYO is for everyone and through this campaign, we want everyone to feel welcome at OYO, whether it is a family, groups of friends, a local entrepreneur travelling for business or even corporate travellers. This campaign isn’t just about couples. It's about relationships in general. By leveraging a personality like Neena we're looking to build affection and likability among all segments of travellers, own relationships of all kinds and let them know OYO stands for them all.”

Also Read: "Leisure travel will be a huge focus for us this year": OYO's Mayur Hola

“February is a big month, in terms of youngsters choosing us, because it’s when people fall in love once more…,” said Hola in a previous chat with afaqs!.

Thus, we came across OYO celebrating ‘Propose Day’ on Twitter in the run-up to Valentine’s Day, a brilliant call out to those famous Indian ‘Romeos’. The brand is leaving no stone unturned to celebrate the month of love, also one of its most profitable period.

With the COVID pandemic still not over, it makes sense to choose the hotels that you’ve visited and can trust, than to take a risk and stay at an unverified place. To allay consumer concerns, OYO, last year (2020), announced a tie-up with Unilever, wherein the former would use the consumer goods giant’s home and personal hygiene brands to clean and disinfect its properties.

This partnership was meant for the OYO’s ‘Sanitised Stays’ initiative. The properties that clear background checks for sanitisation, hygiene and protective equipment can use this tag.

In November last year, OYO also rolled out ‘Contactless Check-in’, where guests can choose to check-in from anywhere using the OYO app and, therefore, eliminate the need for a physical check-in upon arrival.

With travel seeing a slow and steady pick up, brands are doing their best to lure travellers. OYO released two ads last year urging people to “chal pahad” or visit the beaches, with safety precautions, of course.

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