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In a very smart marketing tactic, InterContinental Hotels Group Priority Club is taking advantage of the recent devaluation of the Hilton HHonors program (see our Nov 3, 2009 post). In the wake of all the negative press and backlash on the Internet, IHG realized that the increased number of points required for HHonors reward stays was something the could use to try and pull business away from Hilton.

How is IHG taking advantage of this? By launching the ‘Luckiest Loser’ promotion where they will give any HHonors member 1,000 free Priorty Club points just for registering, plus a chance to gain back up to 20% of your HHonors points in Priority Club points (max 20K) if you have on e of the top 20,000 HHonors balances and the luckiest loser, who is the HHonors member with the highest verified balance, will win 2,000,000 Priority Club points.

Since launching, the promo has already made its way through to some of the more popular travel blogs, forums and press and the comments from HHonors members are that they are taking advantage of the free points (whether or not they plan on staying at an IHG hotel) and some look forward to trying to win the luckiest loser, I have seen some HHonors members state they have between 200,000 – 900,000 HHonors points in their accounts at this time, so I know my measly 15,000 or so won’t even come close to coming in the top 20,000 losers.

Definitely a good move on IHG’s part, build a database of HHonors members which will allow them to provide targeted offers to them to try and pull them away from Hilton and keep them in the IHG brand of hotels.

For more details on the promo and to sign up for it please visit IHG’s Luckiest Loser page

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