Library Archives

 
Robert Post

In this article we explore the traits that make group sales hunters special from others in the sales arena. Hunter tend to be self-driven and arguably possess certain innate traits that can't be taught even if the skills they exhibit can be acquired. The key is to recognize these traits when seeking hunters and then translate them into skills. Once you have identified hunters in the recruiting process you need to hold on to them and create an environment to allow them to flourish. By the same token it's usually a good idea to let the farmers farm and service your existing base of customers. Read on...

Rick Garlick

Brand extensions have always been a common part of corporate growth strategies, but have more recently expanded into the hospitality business. From retail and entertainment brands like Restoration Hardware, Taco Bell and Disney, companies from all industries are now looking into brand extensions. This article examines the implications for hospitality brand extensions, provides examples os successful integrations, explains how hotel brands can expand into the retail space, and examines the questions they need to address before doing so. Following these tips will help brands avoid being the next Blockbuster and will ensure longevity in the space. Read on...

Steven Ferry

A bold and perhaps perplexing question, but the unfortunate reality is that almost all third-party Quality Assurance audits are designed either to increase membership in a club that guests used to use as a barometer of whether or not a hotel or resort would be good (where mostly today they make these decisions based on social media/OTAs); or to be included in a magazine that some guests refer to for the same reason. The goal of those participating does not necessarily add up to improved service and guest experience-more to influencing guest perception and awareness of the property and so strengthening sales. Read on...

Rick Garlick

The expectation for a travel experience to mimic at-home smart capabilities is coming fast, and it's only a matter of time before all hotel guests expect to be able to simply speak a directive to order room service, request valet bring their car, or adjust the temperature. Now is the time for brands to embrace building a strategy for voice search and utilizing smart speakers in-room. Discover the key challenges and opportunities that voice technology presents and what its popularity could mean for the travel and hospitality industry. Read on...

Herve Tardy

In the quest to put the customer first, many hotel chains are reevaluating their approach to IT. The advancement of cloud services, Internet of Things (IoT) technology and enhanced mobile connectivity has created new possibilities to improve the guest experience. However, capitalizing on these capabilities means moving away from traditional, centralized IT and implementing a hybrid IT system. Migration brings its own set of challenges when it comes to network and power management. In this article, global power management company Eaton addresses these challenges and shares strategies to help companies improve critical data protection as they shift toward decentralized IT. Read on...

Shahin Sharifi

This research examines consumer reactions to types of consumer reviews and finds that when a satisfaction guarantee is not provided, the most favorable evaluations belong to positive reviews, followed by mixed reviews, and then negative reviews. With a satisfaction guarantee, consumers react the most favorably to mixed reviews and have similar evaluations of positive and negative reviews. Furthermore, this research concludes that uncertainty intolerance (i.e., the need for cognitive closure) enhances the evaluations of positive and negative reviews but lowers the evaluations of mixed reviews. Nonetheless, with a satisfaction guarantee, consumers' uncertainty intolerance enhances also the evaluations of mixed reviews. Read on...

Rocco Bova

Reputation used to be word of mouth, recommendations and built over years of hard work and professional behavior. Today, thanks (or not) to social media, reputation can be built in very short time (see ''influencers'') and destroyed as quickly. Needless to say that your online behavior is as important as your public one. Ensure you follow these basic rules to not fall in the sea of sameness. I am not an expert, and neither I want to be, but I want to share what helped me become a trusted and respected hotelier. Read on...

Gino Engels

The best business decisions are often derived from Big Data. With revenue management so heavily influenced by dynamic changes in data, this is more true of the hotel industry than most. Just consider the variables: seasonality, local events and conferences, room types, amenities, variations of packages (such as breakfast included)... the rate permutations across hotels in a given market can easily run into the millions. So how do revenue managers adapt to this firehouse of data? It's about having the most relevant dataset. With that in mind, Gino Engels discusses the good, better, and best tactics for leveraging data effectively. Read on...

Melissa Maher

Hotels are not only looking for industry partners that provide them access to a diverse breadth of travelers, but also for tools and technologies that will help them optimize their revenue and overall business. Business needs constantly evolve at the pace of the consumer today, and by better leveraging technology partner tools, they can drive insights and efficiencies that will not only grow their business, but can maximize occupancy and ADR, and even improve guest relations. This byline will explore how technology partners, like Expedia Group, are powering the travel industry and mobilizing technical expertise to offer data-driven and tested technology solutions. Read on...

Simon Hudson

As the ski season comes to an end, my article looks at the unique challenges of running a hotel in the mountains, and at the winter-specific services provided at ski resort hotels - from the humble Lake Louise Inn in Banff National Park with its affordable family units, packed pizza restaurant, and popular pub nights for ski workers, to the spectacular Waldorf Astoria Park City, the only Waldorf on snow, that gives guests access to high-end, brand new ski and snowboard equipment, and use of its own dedicated Frostwood Gondola a few steps away from the hotel entrance. Read on...

Mia A. Mackman

This article highlights Spa and Wellness program innovation and investment risks. While wellness and spa are commanding high-level investments across the hospitality and travel sector, knowing how to measure risk versus reward during conceptual development and assembling sound operational framework, can mitigate challenges and safeguard imperative returns on investment. This article also addresses management, leadership and employee turnover challenges that can often disrupt profitability and downgrade quality, consistency and program performance. Read on...

Hillary Bressler

Statistics are one of the most valuable tools at a hotel marketer's disposal. This article gives you quick key takeaways for some of the most important changes to the hospitality industry. Eye opening stats from business travel growing more than 6% to 81% of travel shoppers cart abandonment. Changing your marketing strategies quickly based on current stats keeps you ahead of your competition in this rapidly changing landscape. Move more money towards mobile or change the way you communicate to adapt to messenger app users. In this article you will find 11 key strategies that can be implemented. Read on...

James Downey

Do you know at what point your hotel is neither making money nor losing it? Do you know what fixed and variable costs are in relation to total sales, room revenue, restaurant seats sold, rooms sold and occupancy? If you answered no to any of these questions, you need to understand how break-even analysis can aid in determining your hotel's short and long-term financial profitability. . This article will provide a definition of fixed and variable costs so as to aid in the calculation of a hotel's break-even point. Read on...

Bonnie Knutson

Sense of Place has become one of marketing's more recent hot buzzwords. It's been used to promote everything from a national park to a housing development. And, yes, it is also used to promote hotel bookings. The truth, however, is that we can't really define the phrase so we don't really know how to leverage it effectively. Trying to define it is akin to what Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart said in his 1964 test for obscenity, “I shall not today attempt further to define [it]…and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so, but I know it when I see it…” In this article, you'll read about the three keys to making sure your hotel has a sense of place, not placeness. Read on...

Mia A. Mackman

The magnitude of wellness and mindfulness has ushered in new perceptions of performance and program authenticity. While the nature of the hospitality industry is to serve, care, and exceed guest expectations; there can be considerable breaks in delivery, legitimacy and company culture, making it a challenge to quantify value and maintain significance and consistency. This article examines the central mainstays of delivering wellness with a mission and purpose that effectively ties to company cornerstones, employee ethos and crafts genuine, wellness-focused guest experiences. This article also looks at internal value propositions that add meaningful engagement, and enhance employee investment in stride with operating and fiscal performance through integrally focused wellness models. Read on...

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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.