Editorial Board   

Mr. Hefler

Lawrence Hefler

Principal, Hefler International

Lawrence Hefler, principal of Hefler International and founder of BrandShares, is an accomplished marketer, whose vision and expertise in consumer marketing have driven results in the travel, leisure, and hospitality sectors. His depth of experience and understanding of shared and fractional ownership, residence clubs, and the evolving leisure real estate industry are the driving force behind BrandShares. The Hefler expertise in branding and marketing helps companies find, understand, keep, and grow customers - thereby building the value of their brand share. His mantra is that more than marketing, branding and sales training are critical in to compete in the marketplace. Mr. Hefler is the former Vice President, Brand Marketing at Hilton Grand Vacations Company. At Hilton, he led global advertising, branding, marketing, e Business and strategic alliances. Before his five years at Hilton, he was senior manager at Walt Disney where he led the transformation of Disney Vacation Development and other Parks and Resorts niche business units into e-business organizations. Prior to entering the hospitality industry, he held senior marketing management roles with Fortune 500 brands including American Express, BellSouth, and Boise Cascade.

Mr. Hefler can be contacted at 407-644-7840 or hefler@cfl.rr.com

Coming up in February 2020...

Social Media: Social Listening Tools

The reach and influence of social media is staggering. Nearly 3 billion people use social media daily, posting a range of messages, selfies, images, and everything in-between. According to HubSpot, almost 4 million posts are uploaded to the major social networks every single minute! That's an astounding amount of content and it is crucial for hotels to skillfully use social media in order to effectively compete. From establishing a suitable brand identity and voice to creating content across all the major networks (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.), the goal is to actively engage consumers and to eventually convert them to customers. Some hotels are initiating online contests as a way to attract new customers, while others are rewarding customers with discounts who subscribe to the their email lists or follow their social media pages. Another recent strategy is to employ social media listening tools that track what people are posting online about their businesses. These tools allow hotels to monitor - or listen to - what's being said about a brand across the entire social web, and this can prove to be very valuable, unfiltered information. Social listening permits hotels to be aware of people's opinions about their business, industry or competitors, and some of these tools even listen beyond social media platforms. They also monitor publicly available information on blogs, forums, news outlets and websites. Some listening tools are more focused on gathering and analyzing data, while others offer more engagement-oriented features, which allow hotels to interact with people right from the platform. Often the information that is gleaned from these listening tools ends up being the most authentic, unbiased insights a business can get. The February Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to successfully integrate social media strategies into their operations.