Tips on Leveraging Hotel Data to Reach Your Profit Goals

By Paul van Meerendonk Director of Advisory Services, IDeaS Revenue Solutions | January 21, 2018

Data is heralded as the core of intelligent and gainful decision-making. It’s been reported that companies at the top of their industry for data-driven decision-making are 5% more productive and 6% more profitable than their competitors¬†

It’s safe to say “data” is not on the list of topics nobody is talking about. Data -- what data to use, where to use it, how to use it and when to use it – has been strategically dissected at the corners of nearly every industry discussion to date. Over the years, the pool of data sources hotels utilize within their business strategies has grown exponentially larger. The propagation of its importance within the development of short- and long-term vision and strategic planning has also become more commonplace than in years past.

Innovative breakthroughs in technology and analytics mean organizations continue to see more opportunities to leverage data in meaningful ways. However, the alternative side is the steep volumes of data can be dauntingly large and intricately complex.

Some organizations liken this complex data environment to needing a bigger boat for a sea of data. But when it comes to capitalizing on industry data, size isn’t what matters. Organizations that focus on using the right types of data -- with an infrastructure that can effectively leverage it -- can confidently reach ambitious profit goals.

An era of big data requires that critical business information is not just easily accessible, but easily digested and understood. In many organizations, data related to operational forecasting, revenue forecasting and annual budgets are housed in different systems and accessed by different departments. This disconnect between both systems and departments can inevitably lead to inefficiencies and manual errors.

Establishing the Ideal Mix of Data 

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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.