Library Archives

 
Sherry Heyl

360 video and 360 images, known also as spherical videos or immersive videos, are a new type of media where the viewer has control of the viewing direction. Viewers can get a first-person experience of a different location and time. 360 Imagery has seen an astounding increase of the adoption rate in the last few years thanks to the diffusion of virtual reality devices, new browsers and techniques to display the media without additional plugins and the broad usage of new generation mobile devices that are able to display the 360 media. Read on...

Jeff  Catlin

The early days of the travel and leisure industry are more recent but nonetheless important. In days gone by the idea of traveling cross-country or across a continent was a life-and-death proposition. Through innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit, the travel and leisure industry has become the ambassadors of business across the globe. Yet, when your customers can be literally anyone in the world, how can anyone be expected to effectively understand what they are they are saying? We will take a more detailed look at how social engagement should differ for the various brands within a hotel chain. Specifically, we're going to examine how sentiment is not a universal measure, and that it's not only correct, but appropriate that sentiment for high end hotel chains will have a much larger variance (more really positive and really negative comments). Read on...

Benjamin Jost

Guests constantly hop across different communication channels. To keep pace with them, hotels must migrate through these various platforms to remain engaged. Most modern hotel executives recognize the importance of communicating with guests on the medium in which they are most comfortable. However, identifying and implementing approaches that makes these meetings possible can be more difficult than these executives consider. After all, anyone can send a text message. But meeting and tracking an SLA across an SMS creates an entirely new set of hurdles an owner must address to his advantage. Read on...

Michael Barbera

Social media has shown the world its power. Your power. It's your voice that is shared throughout the world via underwater fiber optic cables and wireless networks. This voice has played a key role in the development of global politics, criminal justice, relationships and economic development. Economic development is a broad term, but when there is growth in a town, city or county, a hotel is likely to appear. Alike every other business, hotels have a target segment, or two, or ten. It's unlikely that a four or five star hotel will appear in small, rural town, and it's unlikely that a large convention will be held in a small hotel, regardless of geographic location. Although each hotel has target markets, hotels can increase their reach through humanizing engagement on social networks as well as increase their revenues by developing a "fully-connected" consumer. Read on...

Benjamin Jost

If you ask most hospitality C-levels, social media might not be their top of mind priority. And why would it? Between worrying about operations, finances (average daily rates and average length of stay), staff turnover and more, social media is just one item at the end of the list. But the truth is, the number one thing that we should all worry about is guest satisfaction - I know I don't need to hammer that home; however, what I do need to mention is that guest satisfaction comes from many places, and is heavily influenced by what people are saying online, not just what happens at your hotel. Read on...

Chris Teso

Social media has traditionally been approached as a marketing tool for top-of-funnel activities. However, the activities associated with generating awareness, like creating viral posts and taking advantage of real-time marketing moments, are difficult to measure and even harder to link to real business value. Yet, marketers innately know that social media has real opportunity as their audience is there—in volume and in frequency. As a result, a new trend is emerging among hotel marketers that takes distinct advantage of the direct follower model of social networks: the marriage of the loyalty program with social media marketing. Read on...

Michael Barbera

Consumers in North America are exposed to approximately 30,000 brand impressions daily. During an average, day consumers are exposed to television commercials, radio advertisements, billboards and sometimes, direct sales, but more significantly are the thousands of readily identifiable brand impressions that we observe, but don't overtly consider. The car logo on our steering wheel, the MTA logo on the bottom corner of the New York City Subway map; the Apple, Google, or Samsung logo on your phone, and the interlocking "NY" of the person wearing a Yankees' jersey at a ball game are all brand impressions. Each of these items are cognitively processed and stored for a later date when marketers hope that you use your heuristic decision-making process to make a purchase without much apparent rhyme, reason or thought. Read on...

Tim Sullivan

As hoteliers' key audiences spend less time on the Web and more time on their smartphones' social apps, it is crucial for hotels to have a digital engagement strategy that creates meaningful interactions on social channels. Desktop still converts higher, but the path to a booking is a journey full of touch points across social. Now that social media platforms are maturing, hotels can go beyond targeting their own guests to discovering new profitable audiences. They can reach and drive sales for all sides of the business: leisure, corporate and group sales. However, before hoteliers think about social engagement, they need to cover the basics of personalization and one-to-one marketing. Read on...

Cass Bailey

These days, a lot goes into choosing the perfect hotel. Hotel choice no longer depends solely on the location, price, and amenities; it depends on experience. Customers have become more interested in experiential features instead of whether or not the hotel has a five-star review. As the phrase goes, many "do it for the gram." When looking to book their stay, the Instagram generation is interested in things that are eye-catching and worthy of sharing with their followers. Just searching the hashtag "wanderlust" reveals millions of images of different travel experiences from around the world. Read on...

Nisha Thakkar

While social media has become a mainstream marketing channel, there are many variables that hoteliers are not taking advantage of to increase their revenue. Unlike other mainstream marketing avenues, social media is not static, as platforms continuously find ways to increase engagement with both users and advertisers. As social platforms have realized their massive marketing opportunities within their user base, they have increasingly capitalized on their clearly defined users by providing advertisers access to them. Today, the popularity of social channels has created a "pay-to-play" model that leaves many business owners and managers perplexed as to which channels to focus on, and the right budget to allocate in order to maximize return on investment (ROI). Read on...

Gini Dietrich

The proliferation of travel discount websites has many hotels scrambling in a race to the bottom. Trust me—this is a race you don't want to win! So how do you attract travelers (and ideally repeat travelers) who aren't simply looking for the cheapest bed for the night? Becoming an expert resource on your city and sharing it through a branded blog is a great way to stand out from the competition. By creating and regularly publishing to a blog that celebrates what makes your city unique, you can elevate your hotel from only ranking in Google search for those looking at hotels in a specific price range to being a top destination for anyone looking to learn more about your destination. Read on...

Mary Gendron

It seems just a short time ago that hospitality public relations - PR - was implemented as a one-way communication between a brand or hotel or resort and its potential market segments. The purpose was to gain attention, interest, and, ultimately, bookings that would turn prospects into customers and, ideally, loyal repeat clientele. Today, the media relations function represents just one component of an interactive, engaged connection between hotels (or hotel companies) and their constituents. This article takes a look at where the discipline came from, how it has evolved, and where it may be headed as a vital tool for driving revenue. Read on...

Ron Caughlin

When accessing and converting potential guests to your hotel, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to SEO (Search Engine Optimization), Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns or Social Media Marketing. The most valuable tool you have in the battle for Google's favor should be the ability to evolve, I like to call this "Digital Promoflex" in today's marketing environment. We all know, just like in chess, we need a plan in order to play a decent game. This is exactly the same premise in digital and social media marketing. In order to determine what kind of channels to target your audience, Read on...

Alan E. Young

Today, social media is a staple in most people's daily lives. In 2016, 78 percent of Americans had a social media profile, up 5 percent from 2015. Worldwide, there are 2.3 billion active social media users - 1.7 billion on Facebook alone! And popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram aren't missing this opportunity to capitalize on our need to be social. In 2016, Facebook underwent a dramatic transformation from social network to a media delivery service right before our eyes. Facebook is now the second biggest ad publisher globally behind Google, and in Q3 2016 reported record earnings of $7.01 billion in revenue. Read on...

Pedro  Colaco

Impressions. Leads. Conversion. Bounce Rate. Hands up who is really obsessed in monitoring these social media quantitative metrics on a daily basis? Quantitative metrics tends to be the main priority when analyzing social media reach or success but there are some new key indicators and metrics that have been overlooked and can also be a key element for a successful hotel social media performance. Most hoteliers are constantly worried about the same old metrics and looking for benchmarks that can help them to monitor their performance successfully on social media. But what about qualitative metrics and sentiment analysis? Are they meaningful? Which ones to use? What can we learn from them? How can we measure them? Read on...

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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.