App synergizes buzzword ROI

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Hilton's BizWords iOs app helps business travelers decipher workplace business-speak
Hilton's BizWords iOs app helps business travelers decipher workplace business-speak

The Offer: The interactive BizWords iOS app was created by direct agency Organic for Hilton Garden Inn to “help business travelers decode and navigate the business speak that has become so common in the workplace,” the hotel chain said on its site. The app plays off the concept of Buzzword Bingo, which is a mobile bingo-esque game in which players create bingo cards with predetermined buzzwords written on them. Players tick off the words as they hear them uttered at an event or corporate meeting.

The Data: The app is intended to drive engagement between the Hilton brand and its core customers: traveling businesspeople. The app is part of Hilton's larger “We Speak Success” campaign, which launched by giving the hotel chain's more than 70,000 Facebook fans the chance to send buzzword-speak e-cards to their friends. Hilton saw an increase in bookings over three quarters in 2011 compared with 2010.

The Channel: The app is for both the iPad and iPhone and available for free download from the iTunes store. The “We Speak Success” campaign was also promoted in print and through banner ads and humorous in-flight videos.

The Creative: Users can compete to become the “CEO” of the app. People who coin their own terms get “promoted” or “climb the corporate ladder” faster. The app crowd-sources trending business phrases from around the U.S. and plots them on a virtual map  that displays how popular specific buzzwords are in different regions. The top 25 users appear on a leader board that allows them to exhibit their virtual business cards for other players to see.

The Verdict:

Paul Notzold is senior creative director at Aspen Marketing Services, a marketing agency services division of Epsilon. He specializes in the mobile and interactive design and has done work for TIME, the 2008 Obama campaign, Merck, Rogaine, Neutrogena and others.

Seems like a lot of work to play. These aren't so much gimmicky buzzwords as much as just business talk and acronyms. “Gamification” ironically would be a popular buzzword that's had it's time in the sun.

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