Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. MacDougall

Jesse MacDougall

Creative Director of Strategy and Brand Development, ICRAVE

As the Creative Director of Strategy and Brand Development at innovation and design studio ICRAVE, Jesse MacDougall has provided creative vision and leadership for projects of all shapes and sizes including building up boutique brands like The Little Beet in New York. He has created roll-out brands for public companies like Hilton and STK. He has also been the driving force behind comprehensive hotel projects like the Sir A'DAM hotel in Amsterdam opening in 2016. Mr. MacDougall has also been responsible for reinventing cancer care delivery for Memorial Sloane Kettering's new patient facilities in NYC. Recently, Mr. MacDougall has been working to master plan new neighborhood developments in Miami and Washington, D.C. His team is also working with one of the world's leading food management companies to identify shifts in higher education and reimagine college campuses for the class of 2030. Previously he was Senior Design at Puccini Group where he led the branding and design of notable hospitality projects. Some of these include the renovation of The Georgian Terrace a historic hotel, restaurant, and residential tower in Midtown Atlanta. Prior to Puccini, he managed store planning and design at global luxury jewelry brand David Yurman. At David Yurman he managed the design and execution of over 100 in-store boutiques, 10 flagship stores, and a handful of multi-million dollar exhibition projects around the world. An expert in strategy, hospitality and experience design, Mr. MacDougall has been interviewed by Wallpaper* and Sleeper Magazine, and has spoken on many Hotel Business and Hospitality Design panels. Please visit http://www.icrave.com for more information.

Mr. MacDougall can be contacted at 212-929-5657 or jesse@icrave.com

Coming up in June 2018...

Sales & Marketing: Opinions Matter

Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors manage a complex mix of strategies to attract and convert customers into guests. Part of their expertise includes an awareness of customer behavior during the reservation process, so they can make sure their hotel is favorably positioned. One such trend is the growing popularity of travel review sites. According to one recent survey, 61% of prospective customers consult online reviews in order to validate information about the hotel before making a purchasing decision. Another survey found that the average hotel customer reads between 6-12 reviews across 4-10 properties before making a final decision on where to stay. Similarly, other studies have shown that consumer reviews are a more trusted source of information for prospective customers than other kinds of marketing messaging. In fact, reviews are often considered to be as influential as price regarding whether a customer decides to complete a purchase or not. Plus, travel sites with the most reviews - including recent reviews from satisfied customers and thoughtful responses from staff - were also found to be the most appealing. So having positive reviews on a travel website is essential and can help to increase a hotel's conversion rates dramatically. Of course, there are all kinds of additional marketing strategies for sales and marketing directors to consider - the importance of video and the emergence of live streaming; the implementation of voice search; the proliferation of travel bots; and the development of Instagram as an e-commerce platform. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.