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Case Study

Building a National Brand & Sales Pipeline From Scratch

DreamCatcher Hotels 

Quality hotels cost too much to build. This is why architect-turned-developer Gregory O. Hnedak launched his second entrepreneurial venture more than 30 years after co-creating the renowned architecture firm HBG (Hnedak Bobo Group). DreamCatcher Hotels was created to take all the lessons learned and best practices from designing hotels and apply them to a new development model that would completely disrupt the traditional way of building hotels.

T H E   C H A L L E N G E

While Hnedak’s name was well known within the architectural and hotel development industry, the DreamCatcher Hotels brand was not. It’s tough to break into hotel development, as owners tend to partner with the tried and true firms due to the size of the investment even when a new player has a far superior offer.

T H E   D R E A M

Make DreamCatcher Hotels the go-to casino hotel developer among the tribal community — four-star amenities at a three-star price- per-key — without the expected budgetary surprises and construction delays.

T H E   S T R A T E G Y

The universe of tribal casino owners is a small, known universe. It would take a sales team to get their foot in the door versus marketing lead gen, but the marketing strategy must strengthen the brand’s sales position.

Brand Positioning

After supporting DreamCatcher with branding and website development, we developed the brand’s first media kit and got to work pitching feature stories to industry magazines about this revolutionary model for hotel development that would forever disrupt the industry. Our initial focus was on developing the umbrella corporate messaging to explain DreamCatcher’s concept and distinct offering in the hotel sector.

National PR

Through a relentless PR pitch campaign (think multi-step touch-point plan — account-based marketing style), our team secured a cover-story including a multi-page internal full-color spread in the industry’s top magazine as just one of many high-profile PR wins for this growing brand. We also launched an ad campaign blitz across industry print publications and digital outlets. This exposure immediately elevated the brand.

Trade Shows

Next, we partnered with the DreamCatcher team to develop a break-through trade-show and special-event strategy — that had booth visitors lined up to learn what DreamCatcher was all about — as well as a conversion strategy post-show which had a substantial impact on the brand’s sales pipeline.

Sales Partner

With a tribal hotel already launched and another in development, a turning point for DreamCatcher hotels came when the owner of Elvis Presley Enterprises (EPE) took interest in the DreamCatcher model to build what would become The Guest House at Graceland. RedRover jumped into the core DreamCatcher team that was working to make that hotel vision a reality — as a DreamCatcher property. We drafted proposal responses, brainstormed and helped position new aspects of the development model that were under consideration, and met with the EPE team to coordinate public relations. The Guest House at Graceland opened in 2016 to much fanfare — locally, nationally and internationally. In November 2018, it was featured in the Hallmark Channel movie, Christmas at Graceland.

T H E   R E S U L T S

While campaign exposure and growth in brand awareness was certainly critical to this client’s success, where the rubber meets the road is in deal pipeline growth and actual number of development contracts. DreamCatcher built more than 11 hotels from 2011 to 2019, resulting in more than 500,000 square feet of development.

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