Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Kimball

Gary Kimball

President, Kimball Communications

Gary Kimball is president of Kimball Communications, a public relations agency he founded in 1995, specializing in hospitality and a wide range of other industries. Conveniently located in the Lehigh Valley of Eastern Pennsylvania, with easy access to New York City, Philadelphia, northern New Jersey and Bucks County, his agency delivers what today's media look for: well-told, engaging stories shared through print, broadcast, online and social media. Mr. Kimball has 30 years experience in public relations and is a recognized expert in crisis communications planning and response. Before founding Kimball Communications, Mr. Kimball served in senior public relations roles, including his position from 1988-1994 as director of corporate communications for a $3 billion financial services company. There he led an award-winning public relations, investor relations and crisis communications program. A former journalist, Mr. Kimball has a master's degree in journalism from Boston University and a bachelor's degree in government from Colby College.

Mr. Kimball can be contacted at 610-559-7585 or gkimball@kimballpr.com

Coming up in June 2020...

Sales & Marketing: Technology Rules

It is impossible for any hotel to develop an effective sales and marketing plan that doesn't include a wide-ranging digital strategy. Online platforms have impacted virtually every aspect of their business, due to major changes in how Internet users research, plan, and book their hotel visits. As a result, a successful plan includes generating traffic through the use of a hotel website, social media, email and a myriad of other digital marketing technologies. One such strategy uses data collection and automation technology to create personalized content to individual customers. The goal of personalization marketing is to engage potential customers by communicating with them as individuals - to establish a more personal relationship - as a way of encouraging them to visit a property. Video marketing is also extremely important. Showing someone authentic video from a specific location is immersive and engaging, and video is still the preferred way for customers to interact with a hotel brand. Voice and Visual Search are increasingly in demand, as consumers are moving away from typing queries into a search engine. Instead, they can simply speak their request into their phone, and find and book a hotel without ever typing a word. Similarly, other platforms allow consumers to search visually for almost any image, and find out pricing information, shopping comparisons and how-to-buy - all from the app. The adoption of Artificial Intelligence is also becoming popular. The ability of chatbots to answer simple questions or fulfill requests 24/7 is undeniably appealing. In addition, A.I. seems best positioned to qualify leads that can be later nurtured and closed by a human sales expert - all at a fraction of the cost of a traditional support team. The June Hotel Business Review will examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating these innovative technologies into their operations.