When you walk into the ground floor of Marriott’s headquarters, it fittingly looks like the lobby of a modern hotel—chic white lounges, cozy pods, even a friendly receptionist. But then you notice nine flashing screens encased in glass walls, like a TV control room that has been teleported from Hollywood to Bethesda, Maryland.
In a way, it has. Inside the control room—dubbed “M Live”—were three media veterans tasked with seeing just how much a hotel brand could capitalize on the fast-changing digital landscape.
“We are a media company now,” said David Beebe, Marriott’s Emmy-winning vice president of global creative.
It’s now been two years since Marriott hired Karin Timpone from the Walt Disney Company, where she had led the launch of successful digital products like WATCH ABC, so she could connect Marriott to the “next generation of travelers.” In June 2014, Beebe, also working for Disney, followed Timpone. By September 2014, Marriott had announced the launch of a global content studio.
With a Hollywood-style approach, Marriott is changing the content marketing game.