Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Miller

Dean Miller

Director of Agronomy, La Quinta Resort & Club / PGA West

Dean Miller is the director of agronomy for La Quinta Resort & Club and PGA WEST, a world-renowned golf destination with nine championship-caliber courses designed by golf greats Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf, Pete Dye and Greg Norman. As the resort’s director of agronomy, Mr. Miller manages a staff of over 230 employees, including six superintendents, and is responsible for all aspects of golf course maintenance and landscaping for five public courses, four private courses and five clubhouses. He has helped implement all golf course sustainability methods, overseen all golf course renovations and construction projects, as well as developed maintenance practices that create standardization and consistency throughout all the courses. Known as the “Western Home of Golf in America,” La Quinta Resort & Club and nearby PGA WEST – a spectacular master-planned country club community on 2,200 acres and the site of numerous important tournaments – offer resort guests full access to five challenging golf courses – the dramatic Pete Dye-designed La Quinta Resort Mountain™ and Dunes™ Courses, and the highly rated TPC® Stadium Golf Course, Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course and Greg Norman Course at PGA WEST. Mr. Miller joined La Quinta Resort & Club and PGA WEST as an assistant superintendent in 1998, and has held several positions during his tenure with the resort, including superintendent of both the Arnold Palmer and Greg Norman Courses. He holds a turf grass management degree from Rutgers University in New Jersey, as well as a Bachelor of Science with a minor in plant science from Nicholls State University in Louisiana. A Class A member of the California Hi-Lo Golf Course Superintendents Association and the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, Mr. Miller holds a California State Pesticide, Right-of-Way and Aquatic License.

Mr. Miller can be contacted at 760-564-7674 or drmiller@pgawest.com

Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.