The Hard Rock brand of casinos and hotels is well known across the globe. The organization is synonymous with high-end entertainment, first class gaming, and luxury amenities. Thus, when it came time for Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos to plan its grand opening in Sioux City, they entrusted the full scope of public relations and event planning to LS2group. In partnership with Hard Rock leadership, our team exceeded all expectations for the grand opening event and established a precedent for excellence at all future grand openings.
There was a lot at stake for both LS2group and the Hard Rock organization, as Sioux City residents had been following the construction progress of the hotel and casino for quite some time. Hard Rock had won the contract to build in the city after a highly competitive and well-publicized bidding process, and city leaders and residents had very high expectations. Thus, there was an elevated level of community interest and anticipation for opening day.
LS2group provided strategic counsel on overall grand opening event strategy and community engagement, including assistance in the recruitment of community leaders to champion the property and participate in event activities. LS2group developed and executed a media strategy to engage and educate the public on Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City’s amenities with a goal of establishing the property as the premier gaming and entertainment destination in the Midwest. The team planned and facilitated a series of pre-opening media tours and interviews with several target print and broadcast outlets and Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City leaders.
Through these efforts, the team successfully created a “surround sound” effect of nearly 60 positive earned media placements in 20 key outlets in Iowa, Nebraska, and South Dakota before, during, and immediately following the event. The grand opening was extremely well attended and earned high praise from the public and community leaders. This flood of positive messaging and external validation set the tone for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City’s success in the market, and helped the property emerge as an entertainment and gaming leader in the Midwest.