Appointments & Promotions

Best Western Appoints Michael Muir VP of North American Development

PHOENIX - March 18, 2014 - Best Western International has announced the appointment of Michael Muir as Vice President of North American Development. An industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience, Muir will bring his expertise in strategic growth and development to the Best Western brand.

"We are delighted to welcome Mike to Best Western," said David Kong, CEO and President of Best Western International. "His extensive experience and knowledge of our industry will be integral in helping us to continue to grow our brand presence in North America."

Having worked with such brands as Holiday Inn®, Hawthorn Suites® and Microtel Inn & Suites®, Muir's proven track record of growing new and established brands in the midscale market, including extended stay products, will be a tremendous asset to Best Western. Muir's experience and leadership will be a great addition as Best Western continues to develop its Best Western PLUS and Best Western PREMIER hotel products as well as its new extended stay offering, the Best Western PLUS Executive Residency.

"Throughout my career, I have had the privilege of working with some of the great leaders in the hospitality industry. To now have the opportunity to join the iconic Best Western brand and to work with David Kong and his team, is an opportunity I could not pass up. Over the last several years, Best Western has orchestrated a renaissance of the brand, elevating it in both the eyes of developers and consumers. I am proud to be joining Best Western and I look forward to leading the development team," said Muir.

About Best Western International, Inc.

Best Western International, Inc., headquartered in Phoenix, Ariz., is a privately held hotel brand made up of more than 4,000* Best Western®, Best Western PLUS®, Best WesternPREMIER® hotels in more than 100* countries and territories worldwide. Now celebrating 68 years of hospitality, Best Western welcomes hundreds of thousands of guests nightly. Best Western provides its hoteliers with global operational, sales, marketing and promotional support, and online and mobile booking capabilities. More than 20 million travelers are members of the brand's award-winning loyalty program program Best Western Rewards®, one of the few programs in which members earn points that never expire and can be redeemed at any Best Western hotel worldwide. The brand's partnerships with AAA/CAA, Minor League Baseball, and Harley-Davidson® provide travelers with exciting ways to interact with the brand. In 2013, Best Western earned our highest level of brand recognition, including our fifth AAA/CAA Hotel Partner of the Year award, second Compuware Best of the Web Gold award, fourth No. 1 ranking in Brand Keys Consumer Loyalty Engagement Index for midscale hotels and seventh TTG Asia Best Mid-range Hotel Brand. Forty-one percent of Best Western hotels worldwide won TripAdvisor Certificates of Excellence for customer satisfaction. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit www.bestwestern.com.

*Numbers are approximate and may fluctuate.

Coming Up In The February Online Hotel Business Review


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Hotel Social Media: Engage, Promote, Personalize and Reward
The evolution of social media continues its rapid advance and integration into hotel operations. No longer condemned by some traditionalists as a "passing fad" or a "nice-to-have" by skeptical accountants, it is now a fully accepted customer engagement touchpoint that must be appropriately funded and professionally managed. And companies can no longer assume that merely having a "social presence" is enough. In order to capture the attention they seek and to achieve the returns on investment they desire, companies have to prove their value to social media users who are educated, empowered, vocal and selective. And the strategies for accomplishing this are diverse and distinct. Reputations need to be monitored and maintained on travel review sites, which are quickly evolving into "real-time" networks. Customer service issues and complaints are more frequently identified and resolved in public social forums. Hotels are obliged to choose which social networks best serve their needs (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Google Plus or Twitter) and to utilize them to engage, promote, personalize and reward their existing and prospective customers. Video is becoming increasingly popular as a communication tool and therefore must be professionally rendered, and blogging is now an accepted means to promote brand identity and thought leadership. And finally, effective paid advertising and marketing campaigns need to be devised to target potential customers on social media sites. The February Hotel Business Review will examine all these critical issues and explore how some hotels are successfully utilizing social media strategies in their operations.