Using Guest Wi-Fi to Supercharge Your Meetings Business

By Johan Terve Vice President Marketing, Aptilo Networks | September 16, 2018

Internet use in the meetings sector has evolved substantially in the past five years alone. It used to be enough to offer Wi-Fi for email access and web browsing. Today, more features can be tapped that will keep your meetings business growing while boosting revenue for high speed internet access (HSIA) as well. 

How Meetings Guests Use Internet Today 

For example, the ability to offer customers to perform online demos or online training on-site, can connect far-flung groups. High-definition video conferencing is another big revenue opportunity that is a must-have, top-tier service used by the Fortune 500 and other blue-chip companies around the world. Additionally, making business-critical web applications available to your guests opens the door to customers who might otherwise restrict themselves to their on-campus facilities. Truly, the sky's the limit when customers know you can accommodate their heavy bandwidth use.

Opening Up the Bandwidth Pipe

Many hotels are opening up their bandwidth pipe with brand-new Wi-Fi installations, and of course it's always a great advantage to build from the ground up. Many facilities have already taken the step of upgrading the capacity of their existing bandwidth service.

However, left uncontrolled, a minority of users can quickly consume all the available bandwidth. In order to ensure that every user has a great experience, the bandwidth must be properly managed. But what if you don't have either the opportunity or the resources to lay in new bandwidth? The following solutions can be used by meetings managers to handle existing bandwidth. There are positives and negatives to each one:

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Architecture & Design: Expecting the Unexpected

There are more than 700,000 hotels and resorts worldwide and the hotel industry is continually looking for new ways to differentiate its properties. In some cases, hotels themselves have become travel destinations and guests have come to expect the unexpected - to experience the touches that make the property unlike any other place in the world. To achieve this, architects and designers are adopting a variety of strategies to meet the needs of every type of guest and to provide incomparable customer experiences. One such strategy is site-integration - the effort to skillfully marry a hotel to its immediate surroundings. The goal is to honor the cultural location of the property, and to integrate that into the hotel's design - both inside and out. Constructing low-impact structures that blend in with the environment and incorporating local natural elements into the design are essential to this endeavor. Similarly, there is an ongoing effort to blur the lines between interior and exterior spaces - to pull the outside in - to enable guests to connect with nature and enjoy beautiful, harmonious surroundings at all times. Another design trend is personalization - taking the opportunity to make every space within the hotel original and unique. The days of matching decor and furniture in every room are gone; instead, designers are utilizing unexpected textures, mix-and-match furniture, diverse wall treatments and tiles - all to create a more personalized and fresh experience for the guest. Finally, lobbies are continuing to evolve. They are being transformed from cold, impersonal, business-like spaces into warm, inviting, living room-like spaces, meant to provide comfort and to encourage social interaction. These are a few of the current trends in the fields of hotel architecture and design that will be examined in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.