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Paul Breslin

Generally, any hotel that uses a nearby educational institution as the primary demand generator can be considered a campus hotel; however, the scope of this article focuses on hotels that are directly affiliated with an educational institution, often a college or university.For each campus hotel project, developers should fully understand the school's vision to create a property that not only meets the design requirements and educational purposes, but is also economically sustainable. On the other hand, operators should have appropriate revenue management practice, leverage school's internal resources, and manage student employees with extra emphasis on scheduling and training. The concept of campus hotels is not a new one. Read on...

Jonathan Barsky

With improved benefits and guest-friendly rules, hotel loyalty programs are increasingly becoming one of the primary reasons for selecting a particular hotel. Loyalty programs now rank fourth among reasons why consumers select a hotel (the top three reasons are "Location", "Price", and "Past Experience"). Across the industry loyalty program membership is on the rise and the percentage of "Elite" members in these hotel programs rose sharply in 2011 (up 5%). This is good news for hotels because members of these programs are more likely to recommend the hotel, spend more per room, and are less sensitive to price increases compared to non-member guests. Read on...

Rohit Verma

Issues relating to discounting and value are brought to the fore by the sudden popularity of "social coupons," which are activated when a group of people accept a particular promotion. The social coupons typically involve a steep discount, which challenges businesses to create promotions that do not lose money. Although studies have found that the social coupons do bring in additional business, they also raise the specter of cannibalizing existing sales. Instead of deep discounts, hospitality operators might better find ways to add value to existing services, especially since research has shown that the amount of the discount is less important than the fact that the business is offering a "deal." Read on...

Ashish Gambhir

Companies today are drowning in data - much of which may not even help you make better decisions and improve business outcomes. Slicing and dicing the reams of data in order to extract relevant, actionable insights is a business imperative. Read on...

Didi Lutz

Understanding the new rules of the crisis management game is important to protecting your hotel's reputation. While the real time that social networks offer these days can be horrific when a crisis hits, at least you will be prepared to face the worst. With a crisis plan in place and a great team behind you, your business will be ready to tackle any questionable social media post… Read my story Read on...

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Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.