Editorial Board   

Mr. Donaldson

Edward Donaldson

VP Marketing, Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Ed Donaldson brings with him over 20 years experience in the hospitality industry serving in roles on property and in a regional capacity to his current position as Vice President of Marketing, The Americas for Small Luxury Hotels of the World, a consortium of over 320 luxury hotels in 57 countries around the globe. Mr. Donaldson is a graduate of Wayne State University with a Master of Science, Marketing Degree. He is responsible for the operation, promotion and development in The Americas region on behalf of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World brand. Beginning his career on property with Boykin Management and later with Serivco, Mr. Donaldson later moved to New York to serve as Director of Sales at The Royalton. After The Royalton, he became the Regional Director of Sales for Capstar Hotels and then moved to Sterling Hotels and Resorts in the same capacity. Sterling Hotels & Resorts was then merged into REZsolutions, Inc, which added the overseeing of Summit Hotels & Resorts and Golden Tulip Worldwide sales initiatives on the east coast based in New York. Following that, Mr. Donaldson returned overseas to act as Regional Director of the UK & Ireland for TRAVELclick based in London. Mr. Donaldson returned to the states and took up the position Regional Director of Sales for Rosewood Hotels & Resorts in the New York Regional office.

Mr. Donaldson can be contacted at 212-953-2064 or ed.donaldson@slh.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.