Interview with Anniek Hoekstra, marketing executive at Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
Anniek graduated in Communication Studies in Leiden and is now responsible for marketing at Hilton Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. She deals with all aspects of marketing and communication on a daily basis, including online, offline, social media and PR, and also works with all departments within the hotel. According to her, cooperation and continuous innovation are the keys to Hilton Schiphol's success.
'I really have the greatest job at the most amazing location,' says Anniek. 'Marketing a beautiful new hotel at the most dynamic location in the Netherlands: this is every marketeer's dream. Even better, I work with a very enthusiastic team. Together with colleagues from Meetings & Events, Bowery Restaurant, Axis Bar and eforea Spa, among others, we consider different ways to attract guests to our hotel and keep them enthusiastic. We thought up "Free thinking in action" as our motto, to remain innovative and to surprise guests with wonderful experiences. This helps us to keep one another alert and continually think of new initiatives.
Our guests really are far more important in establishing the Hilton's image than we could ever hope to be. They share their experiences on various websites, on social media or directly with family and friends. For example, we have a bar with over 100 different brands of gin, including Dutch gin. At your request, our bartenders will mix the most amazing drinks for you. You will even get a little card with your cocktail, listing the ingredients that were used. That way, you can make it at home as well. People talk and blog about this. Incidentally, this bar and our hotel can be experienced in virtual reality from anywhere in the world, letting you walk around and have the bartender prepare a virtual gin and tonic for you. This is a great tool for our customers, who often have to book accommodation for groups without actually having been there. Our innovations have even won us the Hilton EMEA Excellence in Marketing award, and I'm very proud of it.
But sitting back is not an option. We have started the GINius Afterwork events (the next event is on 14 September!) and introduced 'Shake & Bake', attractively priced cocktails and pizza every Thursday from 5 o'clock. The aim is to offer the employees of companies at Schiphol a cool place to get together. Hilton Schiphol is the perfect location for that. I've noticed that there is a real demand for afterwork events, where people are free to network at their leisure. We started with 100 visitors and are already approaching 300! We are also working on a concept for the "new way of meeting", and we will soon be launching a meeting area for that purpose with bean-bags, music, games and special LED lighting to stimulate creative thought processes. Leisurely networking is what SPOT Schiphol, the Schiphol community, is all about - which is why I decided to become its ambassador. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and Hilton Schiphol can really help each other in building a community. I would like to give everyone who works at Schiphol a tip: go to www.spotschiphol.nl and join us at our next meeting!'