The fledgling hospitality brand is part of Tune Group, an entertainment and leisure conglomerate founded by the owners of Malaysian low-cost airline AirAsia.
It opened the first of a planned chain of no-frills hotels in Central London last month; Tune Hotels hopes to have 15 locations across the capital by 2017.
Over the coming months, Tune Hotels’ UK-focused marketing will be concentrated on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
The brand is also likely to launch geo-targeted activity via location-based services Foursquare and Facebook Places, as well as extending an ongoing taxi advertising push in London. Media planning and buying for the campaign is being handled by Mindshare.
Globally, the group is seeking to promote its umbrella brand. From this season, Tune has taken over from AirAsia as the referees’ shirt sponsor for English Premiership football, which has a big audience in South-East Asia as well as the UK and Europe. It is also looking to appoint a head of commercial to handle marketing across all its territories.
Tune Group co-founder To-ny Fernandes also manages Formula One team Lotus Racing, which has returned to the sport after a 16-year hiatus.
Tune Hotels chief executive Mark Lankester told Marketing the brand aims to apply a ‘low-cost airline model to the hospitality sector’, with lower prices for early bookings.
He suggested that this approach, which enables it to offer rooms for as little as £9 a night, would help differentiate Tune from rival low-cost hotel chains in the UK, such as Travelodge and Premier Inn.
As well as appealing to visitors to London from South-East Asia, who are already familiar with the Tune brand, the hotels will target security-conscious female travellers with a promise of a front desk that is staffed 24 hours a day and an electronically locked entrance.
Tune’s hotel on Westminster Bridge Road has been launched in partnership with Costa Coffee, which has a shop on the ground floor. Lankester is keen to discuss similar collaborations with other food and coffee-shop brands.
Tune currently operates 10 hotels, including seven in its Malaysian home market and two in Indonesia. However, it plans to open several hundred locations across Europe, India, China, South-East Asia and South America over the next five years.