Editorial Board   

Mr. DiLeva

Michael DiLeva

Executive Vice President, The IDT Group

Michael DiLeva joined The IDT Group - the hospitality industry's leading Customer Relationship Management (CRM) services provider - in 2007 as the head of both the company's Gaming Division and corporate business development. In this role, he oversees a variety of tasks such as industry relations, marketing and strategic/solution alliances. Mr. DiLeva also plays an active role in the company's development and delivery of advanced guest management technology and services for hotel chains including Marriott, Millennium, Benchmark, Destination and Mandarin Oriental. IDT also serves over 200 upscale independent properties including Canyon Ranch, The Broadmoor and Hershey Resorts. Prior to joining IDT, Mr. DiLeva served as Executive Vice President and General Manger of KoolConnect Technologies - a leading provider of digital and advanced High Definition entertainment services to the luxury and upscale segments of the Hospitality Industry. While at KoolConnect, Mr. DiLeva oversaw Sales, Marketing, Operations and Product Definition, worked closely with leading operators including Mandarin Oriental, Pan Pacific, InterContinental and Wynn Resorts and helped the company to grow over 1,200% during his tenure. Earlier in his career, Mr. DiLeva served as Managing Director of the Hospitality Practice for Unisys Corporation, a Fortune(R) 300 technology and services company. In that position, he extended the company's travel solutions expertise from airlines into the hospitality industry and introduced a variety of solutions into this prior "green field" market for Unisys, including broadband connectivity and consulting, customer loyalty systems development and implementation, enterprise security and video-on-demand. During his time with Unisys, the Hospitality Practice grew from a start-up to a $12 million business and he personally provided consulting services for C-Level executives at major hotel companies and hospitality vendors in the United States, Europe and Middle East. Mr. DiLeva's other experience includes a stint as Vice President of Marketing for a hospitality technology company that deployed in-room High-Speed Internet Access in upscale and luxury hotel properties throughout the United States. In addition, he spent 10 years in marketing roles for Bally's Entertainment, Inc. and Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. and was the recipient of the 1998 corporate "Chairman's Award," the highest honor offered by Harrah's Entertainment, Inc., for his work helping to develop a patented loyalty program enhancement program. Mr. DiLeva has authored numerous articles on hospitality technology and customer loyalty and served as a Contributing Editor to National Hotel Executive, a leading online trade publication. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing Management from Rutgers University and a Masters of Business Administration degree from Saint Joseph's University. He has also completed an executive leadership program conducted by the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business and serves on the Technology Advisory Board for the Penn State University School of Hospitality Management.

Mr. DiLeva can be contacted at 215-487-3522 or mdileva@theidtgroup.com

Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. 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.