Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Howell

Rob Howell

General Manager, Shawnee Inn & Golf Resort

Rob Howell is the General Manager of The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort. He has held leadership positions in the hospitality industry for nearly 30 years. Rob's specialties include increasing the sustainability of business, creating a culture of exceptional guest service, breaking the mold of typical business organizational structures, and auditing operations to focus on “what makes us successful; people and processes”. A graduate with a Master's Degree in Hotel Administration from Penn State University's Hospitality program, Mr. Howell has held responsibilities ranging from Vice President of Marketing and General Manager to Graduate Assistant and Sales Manager. Mr. Howell began his career at Allied Hospitality, later SB Yen, and finally arrived at The Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort where he manages the 99 room property and 27-hole championship golf course among other amenities. Mr. Howell is a board member of the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association, President of the Sherman Theater, and Rotarian. He has been honored as the 2010 General Manager of the Year for the United States by the American Hotel and Lodging Association, 2010 General Manager of the Year by the Pennsylvania Tourism and Lodging Association, and 2008 Outstanding Tourism Employee by the Pocono Mountain Visitors Bureau.

Mr. Howell can be contacted at 570-424-4050 x1409 or pr@shawneeinn.com

Coming up in February 2020...

Social Media: Social Listening Tools

The reach and influence of social media is staggering. Nearly 3 billion people use social media daily, posting a range of messages, selfies, images, and everything in-between. According to HubSpot, almost 4 million posts are uploaded to the major social networks every single minute! That's an astounding amount of content and it is crucial for hotels to skillfully use social media in order to effectively compete. From establishing a suitable brand identity and voice to creating content across all the major networks (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.), the goal is to actively engage consumers and to eventually convert them to customers. Some hotels are initiating online contests as a way to attract new customers, while others are rewarding customers with discounts who subscribe to the their email lists or follow their social media pages. Another recent strategy is to employ social media listening tools that track what people are posting online about their businesses. These tools allow hotels to monitor - or listen to - what's being said about a brand across the entire social web, and this can prove to be very valuable, unfiltered information. Social listening permits hotels to be aware of people's opinions about their business, industry or competitors, and some of these tools even listen beyond social media platforms. They also monitor publicly available information on blogs, forums, news outlets and websites. Some listening tools are more focused on gathering and analyzing data, while others offer more engagement-oriented features, which allow hotels to interact with people right from the platform. Often the information that is gleaned from these listening tools ends up being the most authentic, unbiased insights a business can get. The February Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to successfully integrate social media strategies into their operations.