Library Archives

 
Gino Engels

It's easy to feel intimidated by today's travel distribution landscape. Travelers are changing the way they buy, new players are disrupting existing monopolies, OTAs are buying each other, and hoteliers have access to so much data that it's become a full-time job to interpret it and put it into use. The key is to find ways to interpret this data, act on it quickly and leveraging technologies that can help with this. As long as you continue to strive to understand the market - and, most importantly, your guests - you'll be able to tap into the opportunities that, as a whole, make all the difference to your bottom line. Read on...

Sherry Heyl

Despite all the recent hype around influencer marketing, it is really nothing new. In fact, I ran my first influencer marketing campaign for a large brand in 2006. We did not call it influencer marketing, it was called blogger outreach, but the premise was the same. We developed relationships with bloggers who had a large following and wrote about our niche. In this particular case, it was about cars. At the time the goal was to increase awareness. Our efforts were similar to a traditional media pitch and blogs were seen as "new media." Read on...

David Ashen

With the rise of technologic innovations throughout the hospitality industry, brands are incorporating new systems that not only affect the way hotels operate, but also the guest experience. David Ashen, partner and founder of interior design and brand consulting firm dash design, looks at how the industry is responding with programs like mobile check-in, app-driven food service, robotics and other systems, along with their influences on the guest experience. Read on...

Gary Isenberg

If hoteliers want a lesson regarding how drastically dining trends have evolved over the past 40 years, they need to look no further than the history of Howard Johnson's. A welcome respite for vacationing families and interstate road warriors in the mid-20th century, those orange-domed waystations dotted nearly every highway across the country. At HoJo's zenith, the chain numbered than 1,000 restaurants and 500 motor lodges. Read on...

Lorraine Abelow

Getting top rankings on Google and the other search engines is the prime marketing objective for hotels. Insight into the logic of Google's madness is a must. While no one pretends to know their secret algorithms, a qualified social media professional understands how to achieve the objective on page one. While everyone agrees getting high on the search rankings is key in today's Internet driven environment, why do so many hotels miss the boat? The reason is clear: hoteliers must understand that integrating the PR and SEO functions into your marketing programs at the outset is the answer to making this happen. This article explains how to achieve those high rankings and optimize your SEO capability. Read on...

David Lund

What information can I get from my monthly P&L to understand my business and make better decisions?" and "What's going on in my business?" The latter is the better, more applicable, piece for an operations manager who has a healthy sense of curiosity and a leader who wants to make a difference. These are the muscles you need to develop as a hospitality financial leader. It is not up to someone else (accounting) to chase you down and to get you on top of your numbers. It is the other way around. The sooner you see the opportunity in all of this the better for you and your career. It is not difficult. If someone stands in your way, find a way around them. Most leaders will not naturally do this, will you be one that does? Read on...

Ann Brown

In the midst of managing day-to-day operations, hotel and spa owners and managers must continually look forward and evaluate how to increase efficiency and profitability. As you balance overseeing current business and forecasting for the future, you are faced with the challenge of considering what changes will bring the most benefit to your organization. For spas, keeping watch of the latest trends in the spa industry and making relevant changes to your facility, treatment menu and customer service practices are important for success. But how do you know which trends and latest innovations will bring that success and which ones might not be worth their return on investment? Read on...

Zoe Connolly

More often than not, the wish list a recruiter's been handed is a purple squirrel of sorts. This can work as long as there is flexibility, but that isn't always the case. Companies can get stuck on the requirements, but it's never a great thing to be to firm with requirements (unless the job is ‘doctor' or ‘pilot'). The best teams are made up of people that respect the organization, respect the vision, get along well with others and are able to excel in helping other team members improve their own proficencies. This is a yin and yang way to look at your team; finding candidates who help mask weaknesses. Read on...

Bhanu Chopra

You may have a sizable stock of inventory. You may also have revenue managers who know how to leverage pricing strategies. Moreover, you may have access to a variety of channels to reach your target market. But, is that all you need to ensure high revenue? Despite having all these goodies, your hotel's revenue-making potential can suffer on account of revenue leakages, which often go unnoticed. Avoiding them will make an immense difference to your hotel's bottom line. But, before we get there, let us understand these glitches in detail. Read on...

Andrew Dyer

Business travelers go where their work takes them, but their choice of accommodation, even within a travel policy, is driven by personal preference. Hotels, airlines and other travel suppliers recognize this, and personalization has become a primary focus over the last several years. Look no further than Uber's integrations with Pandora and Spotify, which allow riders to play their favorite music while en route. As a hotel, the key to standing out from the crowd is in understanding the corporate traveler's preferences and responding with a compelling and relevant offering up front in the booking process. Read on...

Josias Dewey

Earlier this year, the travel company Webjet announced it was in the process of converting a blockchain pilot it had developed into a commercial grade application. The blockchain-based application will be able to provide accurate information about hotel inventory, on a real-time basis, for hotels around the world. This article will discuss these and other possible use cases important to the hospitality industry, including their business justification. Beyond the explanation of use cases, the article highlights several legal considerations that hotel counsel will need to confront and consider as the technology is deployed, including intellectual property, privacy laws in the United States and the European Union and FinCen's current guidance on convertible virtual currencies and the potential relationship between money laundering and blockchain-based loyalty programs. Read on...

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...

Leora Halpern Lanz

Hoteliers, marketing directors, and revenue managers in particular are continuously learning how to put the pieces of the puzzle together when it comes to creative and effective options for selling out room nights. Numerous challenges arise with the plethora of new distribution technology, which complicate the process of directly reaching the guest, or even controlling a hotel's presence on the variety of brand and third party websites. Read on...

Dawn Miller Sander

Do you smile when you think about or see Lucille Ball, Carol Burnett or Chris Rock? Chances are you do... "What do these folks have to do with my hotel property?" you are most likely asking yourself. Study after study confirms that happy teams produce amazing results in the following areas: increased productivity, improved revenues, and higher employee engagement. Imagine how satisfied your guests will be when you and your team add joy to your property! Read on...

Matt Naeger

Travel industry marketers are setting their sites on the customer, following in the steps of other industries such as retail and using digital platforms to strategically target and message across the customer journey. The advances in customer experience we see today are the result of platform and technology availability. Knowing customers like to be treated as individuals is not a new concept in customer service. Not long ago personalized treatment was reserved for face-to-face conversations and luxury experiences. Digital has evolved, but the concept remains the same. Read on...

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Coming up in March 2018...

Human Resources: Value Creation

Businesses must evolve to stay competitive and this is also true of employment positions within those organizations. In the hotel industry, for example, the role that HR professionals perform continues to broaden and expand. Today, they are generally responsible for five key areas - government compliance; payroll and benefits; employee acquisition and retention; training and development; and organizational structure and culture. In this enlarged capacity, HR professionals are no longer seen as part of an administrative cost center, but rather as a member of the leadership team that creates strategic value within their organization. HR professionals help to define company policies and plans; enact and enforce systems of accountability; and utilize definable metrics to measure and justify outcomes. Of course, there are always new issues for HR professionals to address. Though seemingly safe for the moment, will the Affordable Care Act ultimately be repealed and replaced and, if so, what will the ramifications be? There are issues pertaining to Millennials in the workforce and women in leadership roles, as well as determining the appropriate use of social media within the organization. There are new onboarding processes and e-learning training platforms to evaluate, in addition to keeping abreast of political issues like the minimum wage hike movement, or the re-evaluation of overtime rules. Finally, there are genuine immigration and deportation issues that affect HR professionals, especially if they are located in Dreamer Cities, or employ a workforce that could be adversely impacted by federal government policies. The March Hotel Business Review will take a look at some of the issues, strategies and techniques that HR professionals are employing to create and sustain value in their organization.