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Bonnie Knutson

This article points out what marketers instinctively have known for a long time now: People buy with their heart and justify with their head. Noted neurologist Donald Caine said it best: The essential difference between emotion and reason is that emotion leads to action while reason leads to conclusions." In other words, it is increasingly being acknowledged that people respond more to emotional marketing than to rational information when deciding what to buy or where to buy it. Think about memorable Super bowl commercials that moved people throughout the years. Coca Cola's Mean Joe Green. Budweiser's Clydesdale Horses. Or the 2018 Dorito's Blaze commercial with Morgan Freeman. Read on to learn more... Read on...

Hillary Bressler

Millennials make great travelers. They see vacation as a way of life. But are they worth the focus? Millennials travel often which is music to the ears of the travel industry. They travel the most, but spend the least. All surveys point to the increasing importance of Millennials to the family travel market as well. They believe travel agents are totally worth it, and they like to cruise. Tap into these interesting facts about how the Millennials are traveling that will have the travel industry singing a happy tune. Read on...

Gary Isenberg

From the perspective of an experienced asset manager, this assessment of brand loyalty programs answers the question of relevance. Do the brand frequent programs still matter to hotel guests? If they do, how can a brand strengthen the customer relationship? If brand loyalty is not pertinent at specific points in the customer hotel experience journey, then how can the hotel secure its guest relationships? Does it matter? Read on...

Lisa Ross

Today's move toward integrating technology into all aspects of the hospitality experience is driving innovation and streamlining key processes for guests. But, is this new push for more technology taking away the personal touches and human interactions that make the hospitality industry so hospitable? Lisa Ross, president and partner of integrated communications firm rbb Communications, shares how brands and properties can use digital tools to enhance human interaction, foster trial, and develop brand loyalty. Read on...

Hillary Bressler

Is the travel industry forgetting one of the largest untapped niches? With 320 million single parents worldwide, the single parent family travel is a untapped market begging for attention. Gone is notion that single moms are poor. We work hard and play hard, but we require something unique …..for the travel industry to market to us! See what single parents demand from single parent family travel authority, Hillary Bressler, who has her ear to the ground on what single parents want when they travel. Read on...

Mark Ricketts

it takes more than a logo or an employee manual to establish a brand, as our everyday behaviors and the personal choices we make become an important element of real-world brand expression. In its purest sense, a brand is a promise to consumers; an expectation of performance and an overall experience. When we ship a package with FedEx or UPS, we expect a competitive, fair rate; on-time transit; accurate tracking that is accessible online; courteous, properly trained employees and a package delivered without damage. This article will explore some of the practical, simple and, yet, profound aspects of this everyday brand management. Read on...

Sherry Heyl

Despite all the recent hype around influencer marketing, it is really nothing new. In fact, I ran my first influencer marketing campaign for a large brand in 2006. We did not call it influencer marketing, it was called blogger outreach, but the premise was the same. We developed relationships with bloggers who had a large following and wrote about our niche. In this particular case, it was about cars. At the time the goal was to increase awareness. Our efforts were similar to a traditional media pitch and blogs were seen as "new media." Read on...

Brenda Sandoval Valdes

In today's technology dominated society, the days of hotels and resorts creating brand loyalty through old-fashioned classic mailers, television commercials, and print ads are all but obsolete. In a world where tablets, computers, and smart phones stream blogs, social media, and videos that are readily available and at the customers' disposition 24/7, today's travelers are more knowledgeable and particular about the content they process and the brands they choose. Amidst this endless streaming of information, opportunities have emerged for hotels to share their messages across a multitude of direct platforms. Quality content has always been important, but now with the rapid evolution of markets and the overload of information it is more essential than ever. Read on...

Leora Halpern Lanz

Hoteliers, marketing directors, and revenue managers in particular are continuously learning how to put the pieces of the puzzle together when it comes to creative and effective options for selling out room nights. Numerous challenges arise with the plethora of new distribution technology, which complicate the process of directly reaching the guest, or even controlling a hotel's presence on the variety of brand and third party websites. Read on...

Jorge Alonso

For hotels with multinational operations, communication in other languages and multilingual content have become part of their everyday processes. Hiring a translation company involves consideration and implementation of a long-term translation strategy. The strategy must be set with 3 key variables in mind: content, time and budget. According to the type of content and use, the most adequate workflows and services are defined. Based on the deadline, the number of professionals, the tools and quality assurance required are set. Read on...

Ravneet Bhandari

The only consistent aspect in the way people plan travel is that it's constantly changing. Each decade brings new ways for customers to connect with the hospitality experience because of both changes in technology and customer behavior. Think about it this way, the industry has come a long way since a sign out front touting air conditioning and color TV were enough to attract a customer; that is, if they could find you. It wasn't all that long ago when finding a hotel meant pulling off the road because you saw a sign, or by researching a potential stay by utilizing thick books published each year by Mobile or AAA. Read on...

Bhanu Chopra

The hospitality industry worldwide has witnessed disruptive growth over the last few years. With an explosive influx of all kinds of hotels, both big and small, competition is at an all-time high. However, this is great news for travelers as they are spoiled for choice, with a variety of options to choose from. Combine this leverage for travelers with the internet emerging as a strong search and transaction channel, and with the role of Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) getting stronger each day, hoteliers are now under immense pressure to ensure high visibility across all leading online platforms with an aim to drive a maximum number of bookings. Read on...

DJ Vallauri

In October of last year, Pepsico started shaking things up with their digital marketing strategy. They decided to take the social media portion of their digital marketing in-house for the Pepsi brand. There was a lot of buzz about it -- questioning whether this was a smart move. Outside of the tremendous resources needed to have an in-house agency focused solely on social media, the concept of what Pepsi was doing intrigued me. In fairness and full disclosure, I work with a digital marketing agency for the hospitality industry. Read on...

Tara K. Gorman

Branded residential projects offer all the comforts of "home" with the luxury, prestige and high level of services offered at a hotel. This is not as easy as it may appear at first blush and savvy developers are jumping into the branded residential sector with an eye toward high level design and quality, as well as, a keen sense of what the potential purchaser is ultimately seeking. The key to a successful branded residential project is the integration of the hotel services and amenities with the security and privacy of residential living. If done well, this can be quite profitable for the developer as the branded residential real estate market is on the upswing with enhanced sales velocity over unbranded residential real estate by 20 - 30%, especially in emerging markets. This article will take an in-depth view at branded residential reality and recent reemergence of branded residential reality. Read on...

Jeffrey Hirsch

The hospitality industry is swimming with data. Torrents of data are churned out daily from traditional marketing research, social media, email and rating apps such as Yelp. We all prefer to make fact-based decisions, but unfortunately, there are times when the facts simply don't matter. Perceptions, no matter irrationally formed, are always more important when it comes to brand choice, particularly in the hospitality business. That's why qualitative research must have a place in hospitality brand's marketing mix. Read on...

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Coming up in May 2019...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.