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Debbie Bermont

You're in a "service" industry which by its very definition implies that "service" should be your number one priority. Webster Dictionary defines "service" as work done or duty performed for another or others. In the hospitality industry, "service" typically takes on an added definition implying favorable treatment or a positive attitude while performing a duty for another or others. The hospitality industry has gone through great lengths to raise the customer's expectations of what "service" they can expect from hotels, airlines, spas and restaurants. Read on...

Gary Leopold

Choosing an agency for your hotel should be viewed in exactly the same way that you would a business partner, and done with the same scrutiny, due diligence, inquisitiveness, proof of performance, honesty, candor, humor and affection. So where do you start? Read on...

Stacy Shaw

"Why won't the hotels follow the corporate graphic standards?" "They don't understand that my hotel's market is different?" Sound familiar? In many cases, the rapport between the corporate marketing department and hotel field marketing can be described as a love/hate relationship. Creating synergy between the two will have a positive impact on the brand image as well as the bottom line. But as part of the corporate marketing team, how do you accomplish this sometimes daunting task? Read on...

Sandy Heydt

How many of us hotel marketing directors dread the time of year when marketing plans are due? So much work! And for what purpose? When completed, most marketing plans only get placed in a tabbed binder, while the Owner, Management Company and General Manager may or may not even glance at it. Then it goes on a shelf and collects dust. First things first: everyone along the food chain needs to take responsibility for marketing plans that are not meaningful. Sometimes Management Company executives or General Managers just want a plan to look good...i.e. big and thick with lots of graphs. Marketing directors just want to get it done and move on to the next project - like actually selling rooms or putting out the first fire of the day. I can remember that when I was on property I dreaded marketing plan time because I had so many other things to do, and I was also a tad resentful because I knew the plan would really never be read carefully by anyone else. Read on...

Johnna Freud

It used to be that when a person decided he was going to need hotel accommodations, he called either a hotel directly or a travel agent for reservations. Fast forward to today, and with the impact of the Internet, the options for reserving a room -- whether in a chain, boutique or independent hotel, bed and breakfast, inn, all-inclusive club, or timeshare -- are extensive. Of course, a person can still call a hotel or a travel agent, but now he can also conduct research and make reservations via the Internet. Here is where the choices become whelming. So, when do consumers make reservations online? When do they call a travel agent? When do they call you or central reservation numbers or properties directly? And, when they consult the Internet, are they reserving directly through the hotel chains' or properties' websites or are they surfing the Web for third-party sites, many of whom provide reduced rate accommodations? What factors impact this decision-making process? Read on...

Mike Paton

With so much business being conducted "online" today, you may be tempted to let technology do all the heavy lifting for your hotel. After all, you probably get plenty of transient reservations via brand websites or TPAs, and perhaps your sales staff can barely keep up with all of the electronic RFPs you receive. Certainly, you and your sales team have had to change the way you work to accommodate the increased role technology plays in business today. But, like champion athletes, you must make sure not to rely too heavily on automation and just "go through the motions." And you shouldn't drastically change the way you work just because you're more frequently connecting with people online. Technology just creates additional ways to link buyers and sellers -- it's not meant to replace basic sales skills and old-fashioned hard work. Read on...

Naseem Javed

We are being forced to re-design to a new level of "micro-nization" of business units, a "wireless-izing" of mass communication and a "voip-izing" of populace conversations in marketplaces, under a massive globalization with highly localized customization to fit the demands of consumers. This subject is very hot and research on these issues is still being drafted. Read on...

Debbie Bermont

The new year has begun and now is the time every business is setting their 12 month sales goals. Here are two words which could easily give you a significant boost in your sales this year - follow up. Two simple words that are rarely followed in a timely fashion and in some cases ignored completely. We are in the age of instant information. Because of technology we now have the opportunity to connect 24/7 with anyone around the world. People carry their cell phones with them to the grocery store, the restaurant, the bank and the movie theatre. From your phone you can send e-mails, documents, text messages and receive pictures across the globe. Read on...

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Coming up in October 2019...

Revenue Management: Focus On Profit

Revenue Management is still a relatively new profession within hotel operations and as such, it continues to evolve. One significant trend in this area is a shift away from using revenue as the foundation to generate key performance indicators (KPIs) and to instead place the emphasis on profit. Traditionally, revenue managers have relied on total revenue per available room (TrevPAR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR) as the basis of their KPIs. Now, some revenue managers are using gross operating profit per available room (GOPPAR) as their primary KPI. This puts profit at the center of revenue management strategy, and managers are increasingly searching for new ways to increase the profitability of their hotels. Return on Investment is the objective of any hotel investment, so it is only logical that profitability and ROI will be emphasized going forward. Another trend is an expanded focus on direct hotel bookings. Revenue managers know that one way to increase profitability is to steer guests away from online travel agencies (OTAs) and book directly with the hotel. This tactic also reinforces brand identity and loyalty, and encourages repeat business. In addition, it provides a valuable platform to market the hotel directly to the customer, and to upsell room upgrades or other services to them. Another trend for revenue managers involves automation in their software programs. Revenue management systems with automation are far more desirable than those without it. Automating data entry and logistics increases efficiency, allowing managers to spend more time on formulating strategy. As a bonus, an automated system helps with aggregating and interpreting data. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address these developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.