Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Iwamoto

Kevin Iwamoto

Vice President of Industry Strategy, Lanyon

As Vice President of Industry Strategy, Kevin Iwamoto guides Lanyon¡¯s overall strategy for engaging with buyers and suppliers in the meetings, events, association, and corporate travel industries. Iwamoto also works with key influencers to raise awareness of the benefits of Strategic Meetings Management (SMM). Prior to joining Lanyon, Iwamoto was Vice President of Industry Strategy with ACTIVE Network¢â Business Solutions, a leading provider of event-marketing and SMM technology for enterprise organizations, Small-to Mid-sized Businesses, and associations. Iwamoto also worked as a key manager at Hewlett-Packard on the global travel and meetings team, where he served as global corporate card, hotels, and meetings category manager. Before Hewlett-Packard, he served as a senior travel account manager with The Walt Disney Company and as a corporate sales manager with Northwest Airlines. Iwamoto is a former President and CEO of the Board of Directors for the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA). He has been honored with every major business travel industry accolade, including the GBTA¡¯s Industry Icon Award¦¡the association¡¯s highest honor. In 2004, Iwamoto was awarded the prestigious GBTA President¡¯s Award for his numerous industry contributions and leadership. In 2003, Business Travel Executive named him one of 13 Top Visionaries in business travel. In 2002, Business Travel News named him one of the top 25 most influential executives in business travel, as well as Travel Manager of the Year. Iwamoto is a sought after spokesperson representing business travel interests globally to the U.S. Congress and the media, and he frequently speaks at industry events. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, and a Global Leadership Professional Masters designation from the Wharton School of Business.

Please visit www.lanyon.com for more information.

Mr. Iwamoto can be contacted at 408-202-0586 or kevin.iwamoto@lanyon.com

Coming up in January 2020...

Mobile Technology: Meeting Tech Expectations

What once seemed futuristic is now the norm, owing to the escalating developments in mobile technology, and hotels must continue to innovate in order to meet guest expectations. In a recent study from Mower, 65 percent of guests said they would gladly pay more for a hotel that provides the mobile technology they deem essential. The same study shows that 44 percent of travelers are more likely to book a smart hotel, and nearly 7 in 10 want to use smart devices provided by the hotel. And how do guests wish to use all this technology? A majority expressed a desire for mobile check-in and check-out, and mobile payment options. They also want to be able to stream content from their phone to the TV; to make service requests of the hotel staff; to control in-room lighting, temperature and sound; to order food and beverages; and to request a wake-up call - all from their mobile device. Guests also expressed preferences for robust wi-fi and convenient device charging ports throughout the hotel. They also appreciate the use of hotel branded apps which allow a guest to book a room, access loyalty programs, receive discounts and rewards, and even use the app to choose the room, floor and view they prefer. Some hotel apps also allow a customer to track their charges throughout their stay, rather than waiting to receive a bill at the end. Finally, mobile tech lounges are popping up more frequently in some hotels. These lounges offer guests the opportunity to perform tasks like airline check-ins or access to local info guides, but they also provide a place where guests can comfortably get some work done outside their room. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to meet their customers' expectations in the mobile technology space.