Hotel Business Review: Week of Oct 20, 2014

Lonnie Giamela
  • Hospitality Law
  • What You Should Know Before Monitoring Your Employees and Guests
  • Employees can make or break businesses in the service industry. While customer service oriented employees create a luxurious experience at a lesser establishment, employees that don’t prioritize customer service can ruin a guest’s experience even at the most finely-appointed hotel. However, managers and supervisors cannot always be present to recognize and reward desirable service practices, nor can they always be present identify and correct poor practices. With so many points of customer and employee interaction, surveillance is one of the most effective methods to safeguard employee safety and integrity, review employee performance, identify training points, and document “HR issues.” Of course, too much of a good thing can be a problem. Employers must understand the difference between valid surveillance and illegal intrusions on privacy rights before taking advantage of video/audio recordings. This article aims to help employers stay on the right side of that fence. Read on...

Janet  Gerhard
  • Social Media & PR
  • Are We There Yet? The Path to Social Business
  • Are you implementing a social media strategy or building a social business? 2013 was viewed as the year where a sense of data and integration with digital and mobile efforts were supreme. Yet, only 34% of social strategists and executives said their social strategy was connected to business outcomes. Research has shown that there are clear differences between companies that are implementing a social media strategy and those that are building a social business. Many in the hospitality industry are focused on the former. Yet, we should all be striving to develop a social business strategy that integrates social technologies into business values and goals in order to create value for customers and build long-term relationships with them. Read on...

Laurence Bernstein
  • Sales & Marketing
  • Hotel Advertising: Why Bother When Social Media is Free?
  • The notion that social media is either advertising or free is misguided. As is the idea that the two (advertising and social media) are interchangeable. They each accomplish very specific objectives and should be used in tandem to help guide potential customers to making the choice to stay in your property. Advertising can persuade and create a desire; social media, like a sales associate in a store, can answer questions and advise. Together they can lead customers to the purchase solution that best suits their needs. But, caution, this solution may not be the one that best suits your needs! Read on...

OCTOBER: New Developments and Best Practices on Maximizing Revenue Management

Angie  Dobney

You’ve heard the expression - "better late than never!"... Well it appears this expression may apply to a majority of the traditional hotel industry when it comes to embracing total revenue optimization. After years of dipping its toes in the water, the hospitality industry appears ready and willing to jump headfirst into a concept that, for more than a decade now, has helped many casino-hotels take their revenues to new heights – anywhere from 5- to 15-percent increases! Below are some of the key practices of casino-hotels that are applicable for traditional hotel to incorporate- Read on...

Kevin Robinson

Packages are valuable marketing components that increase hotel awareness, create value for the guest, and often times drive room nights over need periods. The effectiveness of the package often is dependent upon the elements associated with the overall experience as well as the price point at which the package is offered. Read on...

Michael  Brownsdon

Capital allowances are a widely misunderstood routine tax relief that taxpayers regularly fail to maximise. An in-depth analysis of capital expenditure on property assets, including their acquisition, can yield HMRC approved reductions in tax. Poorly defined terms for plant and machinery in legislation gives rise to the undervaluing and misallocation of qualifying assets within tax computations. Reviewing historical and current capital expenditure can result in significant tax savings in current years. Read on...

Matthew  Goulden

The battle to tilt a traveler's decision in favor of a specific brand - be it for a supplier or an intermediary - continues to get intense. The focus is on identifying a "lead" as soon as it emerges in the digital domain, and that's where travel metasearch engines are showcasing their prowess. A travel supplier such as a hotel chain or airline needs to plan astutely for real-time hotel inventory availability/ pricing, and optimize campaign, budget and bid management. Since suppliers are dealing with an increasing number of traffic generation sites, associated costs have gone up. No category is feeling this more keenly than hotels. And importantly, a large component of this expenditure is going into competing with OTAs, either via brand.com or other channels such as metasearch. This is unproductive since travel suppliers are paying multiple times for the same conversions! How much to embrace the metasearch phenomenon is a topic of debate at hotel distribution conferences such as those held by HEDNA in January and June of this year. Read on...

Coming Up In The November Online Hotel Business Review


Feature Focus
Hotel Sales & Marketing: The Heart of the Matter
Of all the areas of a hotel’s operation, perhaps none are as crucial, challenging and dynamic as the Sales and Marketing department. In their rapidly evolving world, change is the only constant, driven by technological innovations and the variable demands and expectations of a diverse traveling public. These professionals occupy a vast, multi-channel universe and it is incumbent on them to choose wisely when determining where and how marketing dollars are to be spent to generate revenue from all their multiple constituencies – individuals, corporate guests, groups and wholesalers. Complicated decisions are made and complex plans are devised, based on answers produced from intricate questions – What is the proper balance between Direct vs. Indirect Channel Sales? What kinds of resources are to be devoted to a comprehensive digital marketing program (website, email, social, blog, text and online advertising) on multiple channels (desktop, tablet and smart phone)? What are the elements driving local market conditions and how can local people be attracted and the local competition bested? How does an operation research, analyze and partner with group business generators, meeting planners, wholesalers, incentive travel companies, corporate travel departments, and franchise-sponsored marketing programs? How can effective sales incentive programs be implemented and how can a strategic marketing campaign be deployed? How are new sales leads prospected, qualified, sold and closed? The November Hotel Business Review will examine some of these critical issues and explore what some sales and marketing professionals are doing to address them.