Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Linehan

Bill Linehan

Executive Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer, Red Lion Hotels Corporation

Bill Linehan joined RLH Corporation in February 2014 as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. With him leading a national award-winning marketing team, the company has since launched an upscale brand, Hotel RL, and re-launched branding for Red Lion Hotels, Red Lion Inn & Suites, GuestHouse International and Settle Inn. In 2015, RLHC introduced Hello Rewards, an innovative guest recognition program that is disruptive to traditional loyalty schemes, yet more relevant to changing consumer dynamics; less costly and more rewarding with instant gratification. Hello Rewards grew by 50 percent in 2016, driving RevPar growth for RLH Corporation properties. Mr. Linehan also released RevPak, a guest delivery program of industry-leading technologies and integrations that helps optimize revenues through dynamic pricing, content management, CRM strategies, MA and digital marketing techniques. He has continued to develop new omni-channel marketing strategies consistently outperforming industry averages. Mr. Linehan has more than 25 years of hospitality experience, most recently as Chief Marketing Officer and Managing Director at Richfield Hospitality and Sceptre Hospitality Resources, where he led the sales, marketing and resource management activities surrounding the company's portfolio of hotels and resorts. At Sceptre, Mr. Linehan repositioned the company to become a global leader of hotel revenue technologies. Prior to that, he was Vice President of Global Marketing for InterContinental Hotels Group, where he established the marketing to re-launch seven IHG brands to the development community. Mr. Linehan also previously served as Global Vice President of Marketing, Brand Alignment and Partnerships for Starwood Hotels and Resorts and held sales and marketing positions with both Hyatt and Sheraton.

Please visit www.redlion.com for more information.

Mr. Linehan can be contacted at 509-777-6393 or bill.linehan@redlion.com

Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.