’s head of communication Leslie Cafferty speaks about the company's aspirations in an increasingly competitive market, the challenge of balancing global and local strategies, and the importance of collaborative culture for the brand in achieving its goals. She acknowledges that brand marketing and communications has been late evolving, but says the focus has typically been on product. Maturity and the need to grow in key markets like Japan, China, India, and the U.S. were the driving factors. aims to build out its "long tail" of individualistic properties but is still synonymous with hotels. "We’re not the most well-known player, that’s for sure," Cafferty says. But the company is working to raise awareness of its services outside the field of hotels, and the fact that its listings are instantly bookable. Cafferty says any online travel or tech company is a potential competitor, but that it’s important to focus on identifying gaps in the market and providing (and communicating) a "frictionless" service rather than making comparisons. "We’re constantly pushing to the point of ‘what doesn’t exist today?’, not ‘what’s Expedia doing? What’s Airbnb doing?’" Get the full story at PR Week The company is working to raise awareness of its services offering more holistic experiences and unique accommodation as opposed to hotel aggregation.