skip to content

The Psychometrics Centre

Cambridge Judge Business School

Grayling is a leading global communications network, with multi-award winning expertise in developing inventive, integrated solutions in the fast-changing landscape of digital marketing, public relations and branding. Grayling and the Psychometrics Centre have collaborated on a number of projects to realise the potential of Big Data and Psychological Marketing in practice.

One major stream of activity has involved the running of psychological marketing campaigns, in partnership with Hilton Worldwide to better understand, target and tailor for consumers in real-life contexts. This work has been led by Vesselin Popov, Business Development Director, and Sandra Matz, PhD Candidate in the Psychometrics Centre. The team has repeatedly demonstrated impressive uplifts of click-through rates, return on investments and social engagement with branded content promoting Hilton as a global leader in the tourism, hospitality and loyalty sector.

In July 2015, Hilton Honours, Grayling and the Centre co-launched a user facing application called 'The Holiday Matchmaker'. The app was powered by Apply Magic Sauce and provided travelers with feedback on their psychological profile based on their Facebook Likes. It also suggested personalised holiday destinations for users and recommended who they ought to travel with. 

Within 3 months, the app had reached 3.7 million users, with 60,000 people receiving feedback on their traveler types, and received coverage in a number of international media outlets, including the Daily Mail, TradeArabiaBTNLifePR.deHotelierME and It also won Bronze at the Travel Marketing Awards 2016 in the category of 'Most Innovative Marketing Campaign'.

The success of these initiatives led to major buy-in within the organisation and has since led to many other customer-facing applications of the Centre's predictive technologies:

“Consumers are almost spoilt for choice in today’s travel market,” said Aligi Gardenghi, vice president of marketing, EMEA, Hilton Worldwide, in a recent press release. “The Holiday Matchmaker Facebook App avoids that one-holiday-fits-all approach to suggest a bespoke location based on some pretty heavyweight technology behind the scenes. Thanks to the researchers at the University of Cambridge Psychometrics Centre, we can recommend destinations and other experiences based on a deeper, psychological understanding of our audience for the very first time.”

The Holiday Matchmaker has gone through several iterations, including the Hilton Explorer app, which added further personalisation and discovery features. Future projects will explore personalisation of the entire customer journey - from finding travel inspiration to ensuring a personalised experience in-hotel - linking Hilton's online and offline communications channels in a way that has never been done before.


 About Grayling

Grayling is a global communications network offering leading edge services in a number of fast-changing areas. These include community engagement, consumer brand marketing, corporate communications, CSR, media relations, public affairs, and risk and crisis management. Grayling Communications Ltd. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Huntsworth PLC, a public relations focused group listed on the London Stock Exchange. The group also includes financial PR agency, Citigate Dewe Rogerson; UK consumer agency, The Red Consultancy; and specialist global pharmaceutical consultancy, Huntsworth Health.


About Hilton Worldwide

Hilton Worldwide (NYSE: HLT) is a leading global hospitality company, spanning the lodging sector from luxury and full-service hotels and resorts to extended-stay suites and focused-service hotels. For 95 years, Hilton Worldwide has been dedicated to continuing its tradition of providing exceptional guest experiences. The company's portfolio of twelve world-class global brands is comprised of more than 4,350 managed, franchised, owned and leased hotels and timeshare properties, with more than 720,000 rooms in 94 countries and territories, including Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Canopy by Hilton, Curio - A Collection by Hilton, DoubleTree by Hilton, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Hotels, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations. The company also manages an award-winning customer loyalty program, Hilton HHonors®. 


Upcoming events