Those with long memories will recall that Priceline has already had a go at killing off its infamous Negotiator character, played by ex-Star Trek legend William Shatner.

The Priceline Group-owned supposedly ended Shatner’s involvement as the front-man for its TV campaigns in early-2012, triggering all sorts of analysis from marketing types as to why it had to end.

The reality is a little bit more obvious – Shatner’s dramatic demise was just a marketing ploy and Mr Kirk inevitably returned just six months later with a new series of campaigns.

Fast forward to 2016 and Priceline says Shatner’s time in front of the camera is officially over, but he will do the voiceover work for a new campaign to launch in time for the Rose Bowl advertising festival, sorry, football game later this week.

The company says the campaign is part of a wider strategy to reposition the company in a new light: it’s no longer solely the bidding model that it launched with in 1998, but now features mostly published prices for hotels, with the “deeper discounts” coming through its Express and  Name Your Own Price services.

Most important to the “repositioning” is a move to align the product portfolio closer to that of sister brand Booking.com.

Priceline says it recently added more than 300,000 new properties to the product portfolio, including many of the alternative accommodation types such as condos and apartments.

The reality is that in the US the Priceline brand is under constant pressure from arch-rival Expedia (also with its arsenal of alternative accommodation via the HomeAway deal), although some might question eventually what is the long-term future for Priceline (forgetting brand equity for a second), given that Booking.com is said to be performing extremely well in the US and is the major global brand in the company portfolio.

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Those with long memories will recall that Priceline has already had a go at killing off its infamous Negotiator character, played by ex-Star Trek legend William Shatner. The Priceline Group-owned supposedly ended Shatner’s involvement as the front-man for its TV campaigns in early-2012, triggering all sorts of analysis from marketing types as to...