Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Cerrone

Frederick Cerrone

President & CEO, Hotel Equities

Fred Cerrone's hospitality career spans a four-decade progression from desk clerk at Boston's largest hotel, to managing operations for hotels throughout the country, to launching Hotel Equities, his own company, in 1989. A general manager at age 21 and twice recognized as "General Manager of the Year" by national hotel franchises, Mr. Cerrone has hospitality in his blood. After many years in key positions with top hotels, he founded Hotel Equities and became a Marriott franchise partner. Mr. Cerrone then co-founded Day Hospitality Group (DHG) with Peyton Day. After a successful 10-year run, he purchased the management segment of DHG and re-named the company Hotel Equities. Mr. Cerrone is a graduate of Georgia State University (MBA in Business) and Miami Dade College (AS degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management). He holds the prestigious Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA) designation through the American Lodging Association. He is Chairman of Marriott’s Fairfield Inn Franchise Advisory Board and serves on the Franchise Advisory Board for Marriott's SpringHill Suites. Mr. Cerrone also serves on the Advisory Board for Georgia State University's Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality and he sits on the board of the Alpharetta Convention and Visitors Bureau. Named "Hotelier of the Year" by HotelWorld Network, he received the Alumni Entrepreneurship Award from Georgia State University’s Robinson College of Business. Hospitality is a people-centered business and people are Mr. Cerrone's passion. He enjoys seeing Hotel Equities' associates thrive and considers himself Head Coach of the hospitality team. Before embarking on his hospitality career, he served in the USMC.

Mr. Cerrone can be contacted at 770-934-2170 or fcerrone@hotelequities.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.