Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Engel

Peter Engel

Chief Technology Officer, Marcus Hotels & Resorts

Peter Engel is chief technology officer for Marcus Hotels & Resorts, a division of The Marcus Corporation (NYSE: MCS). A force in the hospitality industry, Marcus Hotels & Resorts provides expertise in management, development and historical renovations. The company’s portfolio includes a wide variety of properties including city-center meeting hotels, upscale resorts and branded first-class hotels. Mr. Engel has more than 35 years of experience in the information technology industry. In his role at Marcus Hotels & Resorts, he leads the strategy and implementation of hotel, food & beverage, electronic distribution and guest technologies. He is also responsible for technology evaluations of acquisition candidates, IT support of hotel openings and business opportunity development. Prior to joining Marcus Hotels & Resorts, Mr. Engel was president of Aperias Management Services, a consulting firm specializing in information technology and strategic management consulting services. He has over fifteen years of travel and leisure industry experience, including serving as senior vice president at The Mark Travel Corporation where he led the systems engineering, operations, and system architecture functions. Mark Travel is a leading tour operator with multiple vacation brands and manages vacation programs for major airlines and hotel companies. Mr.Engel also served as chief operating officer for Trisept Solutions, a leading travel technology company providing reservation systems and ecommerce to the tour operator and vacation travel industries. His roles during this time included managing software development, customer service, sales, and system engineering. Prior to joining the travel industry, Mr. Engel gained broad technology and industry experience during thirteen years at Tandem Computers (now Hewlett Packard). During a five year engagement at Motorola Cellular Infrastructure Group, Mr. Engel lead the technical team from Tandem involved in developing technology for Motorola’s digital cellular initiatives.

Mr. Engel can be contacted at 414-905-1200 or peterengel@marcuscorp.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.