Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Smith

Stephanie Smith

Founder & CEO, Cogwheel Marketing

Stephanie Sparks Smith, the founder and digital matriarch of Cogwheel Marketing and partner at Cayuga Hospitality Consultants is a hotelier first, marketer second. She went from operations at Hyatt Hotels to agency life to client side as VP of eCommerce and Techology at a large hotel management company of over 100 hotels.

Ms. Smith has served as a board member for both IHG and Marriott brands. Because she has worked for and with dozens of hotel digital marketing agencies, she knows that each client is unique and provides only strategic account management and comprehensive online marketing advice. Her passion is seeing her clients' business success by providing proactive online marketing strategies with a focus on cost effective results. Strategic account management and comprehensive online marketing advice, not silo marketing, is also her focus.

Ms. Smith specializes in hotel openings, with over 40 under her belt. Since starting Cogwheel Marketing, Ms. Smith uses her hospitality and marketing experiences to help hotels drive incremental exposure and revenue to their websites and online channels through digital marketing advertising. The expertise of her agency is openings and conversions along with knowing the intricacies of the brand systems of Marriott/Starwood, Hilton, and IHG.

In her spare time, Ms. Smith serves as a volunteer and uses her marketing skills to plan events for her alumni association and fundraise for non-profit groups. She loves continuing to learn about new digital marketing strategies and digital technologies. She also loves sharing what she has learned through blogging, teaching, and being a podcast guest.

Please visit https://www.cogwheelmarketing.com/ for more information.

Linkedin Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephanie-smith-a421a133/

Ms. Smith can be contacted at +1 540-239-1052 or stephanie@cogwheelmarketing.com

Coming up in November 2020...

Hotel Design: Home Away From Home

With the rise of the sharing economy and the peer-to-peer marketplace for lodging options, hoteliers are re-thinking the look, feel and appeal of their locations. There is an emphasis on re-creating a feeling of homeyness - a comfortable, cozy and inviting space that feels like home. 'This is accomplished through the careful selection of furniture design, paint colors, lighting design, artwork, bathroom fixtures and textile accessories. In addition, some hotels are providing their guests with upscale amenities, such as a book and movie library, home-style kitchenettes, a coffee machine with locally-sourced beans and tea, or even a batch of fresh-baked cookies. Similarly, there is a growing design trend based on the concept of place-making. Travelers are searching for experiences that are unique and authentic to the locale in which they find themselves, and so hotel designers are integrating a sense of place into their work. This is partially achieved by incorporating traditional artisanal crafts and other local artwork into hotel rooms and communal spaces. Another design trend includes the creation of full-service, co-working environments within the hotel. Guests don't like to stay alone in their room when they need to work, so now they can go downstairs to the lobby-or up to the roof-to work among others. These areas encourage guests - and non-guests alike - to stay as long as they like and to partake of hotel amenities. Finally, recognizing the importance of the Wellness Movement, some designers are exploring how room design can increase the likelihood of deep and restorative sleep. Creating dark and quiet spaces, blocking excessive light, providing guests with a selection of different kinds of pillows, and the ability to control room temperature, are a few of the best practices in this area. These are some of the architecture and design topics that will be covered in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.