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The Athenaeum x YOTO

How to implement a successful brand partnership.

Learn how we used competitor analysis to form a relevant brand partnership – elevating an independent London hotel’s family-friendly offering.

The Athenaeum is an independent five-star hotel in Mayfair. Beyond its prime location and nods to Art Deco, there’s a truly family friendly offering here that few London hotels manage to get right.

The Residences are the hotel’s contemporary serviced apartments, located in the Victorian townhouses beside the hotel. Whether guests choose a suite or room, or take a break in The Residences, there’s magic about The Athenaeum – brought to life by the caring, warm people who keep guests happy.

But getting the word out was proving difficult for The Athenaeum. So, they turned to Lemongrass.

We formed a partnership with Yoto, the beloved children’s audio player brand, to elevate the hotel’s family offering – marking The Athenaeum as a leading family friendly hotel in London.

It all started with a backlink audit, in which we identified PR and link building opportunities to make The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences stand out among their key competitors.

Results – the highlights

  • 26 brand mentions.
  • Increase in monthly web visits – from 3,700 to 11,200.
  • Six pieces of family focussed coverage in top-tier UK publications – and counting.
  • Print inclusion in November 2022 issue of Vogue.
  • Five backlinks – and counting.
  • Increase in Domain Authority from 38 to 46.

The challenge

During a backlink audit and competitor analysis session, we identified a huge gap in the market for London hotels for families. Competitors weren’t savvy to the demand, but The Athenaeum was already known and talked about as a family friendly option.

This was practically The Athenaeum’s default setting – it’s always been a haven for families, and it already came naturally to the brand. So, the client challenged us to appeal to families, making the hotel the go-to, first choice for a family friendly stay in London.

And we knew exactly what to do.

Here’s how we did it

A dream brand partnership – with Yoto

Brand partnerships have to be relevant and bring value to both parties in order to succeed.

Anyone with young children in the UK will know what a Yoto Player is. You’ll either have one, know other children with one, or have seen ads for one. It’s one of the hottest children’s devices in the world, and families love their Yoto Players.

And if you don’t know – it’s like an audiobook and music player that’s super easy for children to use, while being totally safe.

It’s also a pretty high-end device, cleverly marketed and beautifully designed. This was important as a family stay at The Athenaeum isn't cheap. So the family brand we chose would have to match.

Partnering The Athenaeum with Yoto would be a win for both brands; they’d both create something newsworthy, at a level suitable for each brand, and reach their target audiences by doing so.

We helped the teams at Yoto and The Athenaeum devise an experience that kids would love at the hotel – one that met the expectations of both brands.

Then, we just needed some prominent people to try it out…

Press trips with top-tier publications

With a supporting press office running alongside the partnership, we arranged for top-tier, high-calibre press and journalists to experience overnight stays at The Athenaeum – with their children.

This was the key demographic we wanted to reach, and having them experience the partnership first-hand was essential.

We secured stays with the Senior Travel Content Editor at The Times, Bridget March from Harper’s Bazaar, Rebecca Cox at Country & Town House, and Bianca London from GLAMOUR.

We knew that the quality of the hotel and the brand partnership we’d set up with Yoto would absolutely delight these guests – and that they’d be compelled to write about it.

The results

Things couldn’t have gone any better. Harper’s Bazaar named The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences as one of the “best luxury family-friendly hotels in the south of England”. Vogue called the partnership one of the “latest baby essentials” in the November 2022 print edition of the magazine.

Article from Bazaar magazine

Coverage kept rolling in, from The Times, Country & Town House, and GLAMOUR – to name only a few.

Article from Glamour magazine
Article from Country Town House magazine

But this was just the start.

Thanks to the strong foundation and relationship we formed with the team at Yoto, the brand partnership has blossomed into long-lasting, ongoing brand collaboration. There’s now an affiliation between the two brands, and The Athenaeum and Yoto are becoming synonymous with each other.

And that’s because we hit the right notes – the coverage as a result of the partnership has been relevant and has carefully and considerately targeted the consumers that we set out to.

The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences is now widely regarded as one of the capital’s most family-friendly hotels, and the continued relationship with Yoto will only serve to strengthen that for years to come.

Find new ways of reaching your customers

Lemongrass is a specialist hotel PR agency. Our deep, data-driven insight reveals untapped goldmines of potential for hotel brands – and with our PR and brand partnership expertise, we craft meaningful new experiences that get our clients noticed.

Let’s start a project. Call +44 (0)1865 237 990 or email