To print this page, select "Print" from the File menu of your browser.

How to use Google Hotel Ads to strengthen your direct sales

June 24, 2016

Google is becoming a relevant player in the online hotels sector, something which makes the big existing players like Booking.com or TripAdvisor uncomfortable.

However, Google’s strategy is different to the one of its competitors. It’s not becoming an OTA per se (such as Booking.com or, as it appears, TripAdvisor) and neither is it creating a metasearch engine such as Trivago or Kayak.

Google Hotel Ads (GHA) is a platform of inventory and prices distributed over the different Google products: its search engine, its maps and the new Google Destinations. Is there any doubt now that we will see these prices on Gmail or Google Now sooner rather than later? On the other hand, strangely enough, the product that Google created as a pure price-comparison tool, known as Google Hotel Finder, was shut down in September 2015. That wasn’t Google’s war.

Get the full story at Mirai

Read also "Google looks to ease tensions within travel sector"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_to_use_google_hotel_ads_to_strengthen_your_direct_sales

Expedia launches Hotels.com for Partners

June 24, 2016

Expedia Affiliate Network has launched Hotels.com for Partners, a new online platform that allows partners such as airlines and travel companies to white label or co-brand with Hotels.com, and access its huge list of hotel rates and availabilities, increasing customer loyalty and traveller spend as a result.

Hotels.com for Partners brings together the experience, innovation and expertise from industry leading Hotels.com while delivering the technical expertise and relationships that come from the EAN team.

The platform is unique as it offers partners only accommodation options that deliver the highest conversion rates, thanks to extensive and rigorous testing by the Hotels.com technical team.

Get the full story at Breaking Travel News and Travel Daily Asia

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/expedia_launches_hotels.com_for_partners

Boutique hotels to appeal to Airbnb travelers

June 24, 2016

“The idea of boutique hotels bridging the gap is an interesting one, and while their existence and rise in popularity can’t be solely attributed to the rise in other lodging options such as Airbnb, it’s certainly a part of it as hotels seek to edge out any competition that can steal market share,” said Adam Rossow, chief marketing officer of iModerate.

“These boutique properties often seek to provide a more unique, localized experience (much like an Airbnb) but still give travelers the sense of security and trust they crave,” he said. “However, it doesn’t seem as black and white on which consumers will choose – a hotel or an Airbnb.

“Of course, you have some that are absolute in their choice, but it’s situational for many travelers and their choice revolves around what they want and expect from that particular business trip, vacation, etc.”

Get the full story at Luxury Daily

Read also "Airbnb vs. Hotels: New study reveals key consumer purchase drivers"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/boutique_hotels_to_appeal_to_airbnb_travelers

American Express previews Amex bot for Facebook Messenger

June 24, 2016

The concept demonstrated how American Express Card Members could sign up to receive real-time notifications about their purchases, and important information about Card benefits and services related to those purchases, via an Amex bot for Messenger. For example, if a Platinum Card Member purchases an airline ticket from Las Vegas to New York City, he or she would receive a purchase notification in Messenger and then may also receive a helpful reminder about how to access The Centurion Lounge at the airport, as well as restaurant recommendations, courtesy of The Infatuation, for the upcoming trip. American Express expects to launch a pilot Amex bot for Messenger in the coming months for eligible U.S. Consumer and OPEN Card Members who opt-in to participate.

“As a long-time partner of Facebook, we’re thrilled to be working together to create an innovative experience for our Card Members on Messenger,” said Dave Wolf, vice president, Digital Partnerships & Development, American Express. “We know our Card Members appreciate the convenience of receiving information from Amex on digital platforms where they’re already spending time. The concept demoed today shows how we could help them stay on top of their purchases and take advantage of their Card benefits. The scale and flexibility of the Messenger platform makes it a powerful channel for us to explore new ways to connect with Card Members.”

“We're delighted to welcome American Express to the growing group of businesses and brands exploring bots for Messenger and creating concepts that show how they can enable their customers to experience seamless communication in Messenger threads. We believe that people will value the ease and convenience of being able to view their purchases and key benefits associated with them and we look forward to sharing how American Express is bringing this innovative new experience to life,” said David Marcus, Vice President, Messaging Products at Facebook.

Related Link: Amex bot for Facebook Messenger

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/american_express_previews_amex_bot_for_facebook_messenger

OpenTable now lets LA diners put it on their tab

June 24, 2016

To experience OpenTable Tab, diners simply tap the Tab feature when they book their reservation at participating restaurants. Once they're at the restaurant and ready to leave – or at any time during their meal – diners can let their server know they want to put their meal on their OpenTable Tab and then get up and go whenever they're ready.

"Restaurant goers in LA love to be treated like regulars and truly value a VIP experience," said Catherine Porter, SVP of Strategy and Business Development at OpenTable. "OpenTable Tab is designed to reinvent and simplify the way diners pay at restaurants and enhance the overall dining experience. By removing the cumbersome and time-consuming credit card swap, diners who use OpenTable Tab can focus on enjoying their fantastic meal and our restaurant partners can focus on delivering amazing hospitality."

"Tab gives us a new way to easily process payments from guests," added Amy Knoll Fraser, Owner of Redbird. "OpenTable continues to be a great partner for us, always innovating and offering new services to better accommodate our guests."

OpenTable Tab is currently available at more than 75 restaurants in Los Angeles and will be introduced in more U.S. cities later this year.

To learn more about Tab and view the current list of participating restaurants visit https://tab.opentable.com/.

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/opentable_now_lets_la_diners_put_it_on_their_tab

Long Tail SEO: When and how to target low-volume keywords

June 24, 2016

According to Moz, there are two ways to think about long tail keyword targeting:

#1: A small set of hyper-targeted, specific keyword terms and phrases that are very high value to my business. They're not searched for very much, maybe only a couple of times a month, maybe not even that. But when they are, if I can drive the search traffic to my website, it's hugely valuable to me, and therefore it's worth pursuing a handful of these.

#2: The second way is to have a large-scale sort of blast approach, where we're less targeted with our content, but we're covering a very wide range of keyword targets. This is what a lot of user-generated content sites, large blogs, and large content sites are doing with their work.

Get the full story at Moz

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/long_tail_seo_when_and_how_to_target_low_volume_keywords

Cutting through the noise: Strategies to stand out in the travel shopping journey

June 24, 2016

The travel industry boasts one of the most complex digital landscapes out there when it comes to consumer browsing and purchasing behavior. Travelers are inundated with a multitude of resources when researching hotels, especially in the 45 days leading up to a purchase. According to Expedia Media Solutions, travelers visit up to 38 travel sites during the travel shopping journey; 15 of which are visited the week of booking!

The problem for all hotel marketers is the same; how can I stand out from the noise and win more bookings?

First and foremost, focus on the experiences you are delivering to your guests. That is what’s going to differentiate you from the crowd. Whether it’s the Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, Starwood, or any other hotel brand in your market segment, they all offer the same thing – a bed, a bathroom, sheets and towels. What separates one from the other is the experience. Focus on those things you do exceedingly well. Identify what they are and start talking about them on your website.

Get the full story at Leonardo

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/cutting_through_the_noise_strategies_to_stand_out_in_the_travel_shopping_jo

Case study: How the MGM Grand Sanya Hotel achieved a 4.7/5 rating on Ctrip

June 24, 2016

ReviewPro's Account Manager for APAC, Stefanie Lim recently caught up with Joe Zheng, Hotel Manager at the MGM Grand Sanya in China to discuss how the hotel is currently managing and improving its online reputation.

Why do you think managing your online reputation is important?

Nowadays, with mobile and social networking, people are very well connected and always up to date. Customers are seeking information about hotels before booking by searching the internet for online reviews on OTAs. Therefore, managing your property’s online reputation is vital to the success of the hotel business. We’ve seen that if your online reputation is managed efficiently, effectively and professionally, it will have a direct impact on revenue and guest satisfaction.
Get the full story at ReviewPro

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/case_study_how_the_mgm_grand_sanya_hotel_achieved_a_4.7_5_rating_on_ctrip

Google looks to ease tensions within travel sector

June 23, 2016

As Tnooz reports, the group met earlier this month in San Francicso, and included Marriott and Hilton from the hotel sector.

While strictly confidential in its nature, the meetings main topic most likely was Google’s position and role in the travel industry, which changed fundamentaly in the past years.

Google is no longer just a marketing platform for travel brands, but launched its own travel products that facilitate airline and hotel bookings without having to leave its search results page.

Get the full story at Tnooz

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/google_looks_to_ease_tensions_within_travel_sector

From social media to online travel

June 23, 2016

Despite being a late entrant into the online travel industry, the Ibibo Group, with its two major entities, Goibibo and online bus reservation platform redBus, has evolved into one of the largest players in the Indian online travel market. Its employee strength has grown from around 60 just two years ago to about 1,600. The number of hotels on its platform doubled over the past year to 43,000. Its topline more than doubled from Rs 114 crore in FY2014 to Rs 243 crore in FY2015 (though losses widened from Rs 117 crore to Rs 377 crore), according to the company’s latest filings with the Registrar of Companies. (The revenue numbers do not include revenues from redBus and business-to-business travel portal Travel Boutique Online.)

Now, Kashyap finds himself at perhaps the most important juncture in his decade-long entrepreneurial journey. Earlier this year, in a display of confidence in the Indian online travel market, parent Naspers announced it will be investing $250 million (around Rs 1,678 crore) in the Ibibo Group. The move is particularly significant considering that it follows Chinese travel giant Ctrip’s $180 million investment into MakeMyTrip in January 2016. To add to the already high stakes, the coveted hotels segment has now seen Goibibo emerge as the largest challenger to MakeMyTrip’s hegemony.

Between October and December 2015, Goibibo had the highest volume share of hotel bookings among Indian online travel agencies (OTAs) according to a Morgan Stanley research report released earlier this year. Another report by British research firm Millward Brown reportedly put it at second spot with an 18.9 percent market share, against MakeMyTrip’s 25 percent. Going by even the more modest of the two estimates, the company has come a long way. Consider that in 2009, when most of its competitors including Yatra.com, Cleartrip and MakeMyTrip were already present in the Indian market, Goibibo was an eight-person project.

Get the full story at Forbes India

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/from_social_media_to_online_travel

Airbnb vs. Hotels: New study reveals key consumer purchase drivers

June 23, 2016

Airbnb is growing at an explosive rate and gunning to become a full-blown hospitality brand, putting even more pressure on large hotel chains to hold onto their customer base. A new research study by iModerate, a progressive insights agency, reveals the consumer preferences behind this growth and details the personas and different expectations of guests who stay at each type of property.

Airbnb Guests Seen as Risk-Taking Extroverts, Hotel Guests as Conservative Introverts: iModerate asked 1,500 consumers nationwide to describe their preferences for staying at an Airbnb rental versus a hotel, their expectations of both experiences and the types of people who prefer to stay at each.

Airbnb patrons were described as adventurous, open and often younger travelers who are willing to take a risk booking a place in the hopes of having a unique, localized experience for a reasonably low price. Location is paramount for these visitors who like to stay in the heart of neighborhoods that often don’t have commercial lodging options and get a “locals” experience. In terms of amenities, WiFi is a must-have, kitchens are a nice bonus and hosts who are helpful, but otherwise leave them alone, are appreciated.

By stark contrast, hotel guests are described as conservative, private and introverted. They value predictable processes and consistent amenities over location, and seek the trust that comes with staying with an organization rather than an individual. They also still appreciate an experience, but instead of venturing out, they consider the hotel itself as a destination and seek relaxation and pampering on property, as well as a set of amenities that meets the brand standard. Hotel guests are also mildly obsessed with towels, linens and, in particular, pillows – an item that wasn’t called out when discussing Airbnb stays.

“While there is considerable contrast between the personas and preferences of Airbnb and hotel guests, it’s a gap that’s getting smaller by the day,” said iModerate CEO Jen Drolet. “There’s an opportunity for Airbnb to lure more traditional hotel guests by focusing on the trust factor, and hotels can compete by adding more localized and distinctive experiences.”

Major hotel chains have expanded to include smaller, boutique brands with the potential to compete more directly with Airbnb by offering localized experiences and personal touches that break the mold of traditional hotel stays. iModerate found consumers expect boutique hotels to deliver a smaller footprint with unique, local flair and a sense of luxury, which are similar to the characteristics they seek from Airbnbs.

“These chains not only have the potential to succeed, but could have a very strong foothold in the travel industry, as they offer the best of both worlds by uniting the more localized aspect of Airbnb with the trust and security that comes with staying at a hotel chain,” said Drolet.

Download the full report at iModerate (free registration)

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/airbnb_vs._hotels_new_study_reveals_key_consumer_purchase_drivers

Who uses a travel agent in this day and age?

June 23, 2016

The travel industry has seen a lot of changes in the last two decades. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of full-time travel agents in the U.S. dropped from a high of 124,000 in 2000 to around 74,000 in 2014. The business model of travel agencies has changed, mostly due to the rise of online booking but also due to the popularity of telecommuting, which has rendered many business trips unnecessary.

More recently, there’s been talk of the travel industry bouncing back as the economy recovers. Based on a survey of 14,000 households, the American Society of Travel Agents reports that it is currently seeing the highest numbers of consumers booking through travel agents in three years. The most common reason provided for doing so? Travelers said it saved them time. Though travel agencies’ business isn’t expected to return to pre-internet levels, online booking has, even as it has flourished, shown travelers the frustrations that can come with booking travel themselves—and that outsourcing the stress of arranging travel can be worthwhile.

Kerl Commock lives in Orlando. She’s been working as a travel agent for over 30 years and currently works at Balboa Travel, a California travel agency that has been in the business for nearly half a century. I talked to Commock about the stresses of booking travel, TSA lines, and the rise of online booking.

Get the full story at The Atlantic

Read also "Six reasons travel agents are back" at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/who_uses_a_travel_agent_in_this_day_and_age

Marriott: Transaction-based loyalty programs require deeper understanding of customers

June 23, 2016

During the session, “Getting Customer Understanding Right,” the executive discussed Marriott’s upcoming merger with Starwood Hotels and Resorts, as well as the consolidation’s implications for both hospitality companies' popular loyalty programs. He also deemed Marriott’s ongoing dedication to improve its rewards program – which has a frequently used mobile application – with various digital initiatives as imperative in today’s sector, due to the thickening competition.

“Customers have choices like Airbnb or a plethora of choices on Travelocity and other [online travel agencies],” said Thom Kozik, vice president of loyalty at Marriott International. “We have to show our appreciation and loyalty to them.

“When I walked into Marriott [for the first time], I was blown away from the expertise in email marketing.”

Get the full story at the Mobile Marketer

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/marriott_transaction_based_loyalty_programs_require_deeper_understanding_of

Google confirms ads coming to Local Pack

June 23, 2016

During the pre-conference Workshop, Google’s Global Product Lead for Local Ads, Ali Turhan, discussed some of the new AdWords features as they pertain to local. Among them, he showed a screen shot (below), which Joy Hawkins tweeted, but which is not officially authorized for distribution at this point.

The image showed a smartphone featuring a local 3-pack. The top listing was an ad, followed by two organic listings. Turhan said that this had been shown at Google’s Performance Summit in San Francisco several weeks ago. However, the announcement had not been part of any of the keynotes.

Get the full story at Search Engine Land

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/google_confirms_ads_coming_to_local_pack

The Distribution Cost Conundrum: Another major misalignment of interest between owners and operators

June 23, 2016

Direct online bookings are by far the most lucrative and cost-efficient bookings at any hotel, resort or casino. As a point of reference, across the HeBS Digital hotel client portfolio, the average direct channel distribution costs (property website) are 4.5%, compared to the hefty OTA commissions of 18%-25%.

Yet, operators and asset managers/owners have completely opposite interests, as far as distribution costs are concerned.

For asset managers/owners, any dollar “saved” from distribution adds to the bottom line (Net Operating Income – NOI) and the investment return. In this sense, the more inexpensive direct bookings, the better. The fewer expensive OTA bookings, the better.

For many operators, as we see below, the cost of distribution via OTAs plays a far less important role, and in many cases is not even accounted for in the property P&L (Profit and Loss).

Get the full story at HeBS Digital

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_distribution_cost_conundrum_another_major_misalignment_of_interest_betw

Social Media Marketing: 3 great examples of hotels that are getting it right

June 23, 2016

The hotels we feature below – both independent properties and groups – have implemented a social media strategy that works, and they can give you the inspiration you need in order to revamp your social channels presence.

Let’s look at three example of hotels getting social media right…

1. The MGM Grand – Las Vegas, USA

What are they really good at?
Focusing on photos and videos

How are they mastering social media?
The MGM Grand in Las Vegas brings Sin City to life on its social media pages. Whether the hotel is posting a video of a lively pool party happening that very moment, or photographs of an event that took place at the hotel, followers are always in-the-know about what is going on there.

This provokes interest and excitement from guests who are just beginning to research their next trip to Las Vegas, and it provides useful information for those who are currently staying at the hotel. In addition, the hotel has an interactive concierge app linked to its social media pages, allowing guests to get the information they need whenever and wherever they are.

Get the full story at SiteMinder

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/social_media_marketing_3_great_examples_of_hotels_that_are_getting_it_right

Hotel book direct tactics that work

June 22, 2016

1. Start where customers start: If you have a Pay Per Click campaign does it clearly state that by Booking Direct you get the best deal? Does your ad include direct links to specific rates? Did you know that you can also have a link to a hidden rate on your Google Ad that you can only access through that link and therefore can’t be ‘rate parity checked’ by the OTA’s.

2. Clear Messages - Have you strong Book Direct messages on your website? Your web designer can add these for you and they work. Examples of clear Book Direct Messaging – Best Rate Guaranteed / No Booking Fee / Access to Exclusive Packages / Complimentary Upgrade (subject to availability) / Chance to win an upgrade to a suite etc etc etc.

3. Make it Emotive: Once we get them to your booking engine, how are you making them feel? We all know that the majority of purchases are made not through necessity (you have a competitive set remember) but they are made emotively. So how are making customers feel? Please, please stop using hotel acronyms like B&B or DBB. Even the standard bed and breakfast rates can be changed to ‘Stay with Breakfast’ or even ‘Breakfast Inclusive Rate’. It is no longer enough to say ‘Best Available Rate’ as this is often mis-leading and often not your best rate.

Get the full story at Right Revenue Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotel_book_direct_tactics_that_work

Priceline founder launches new company aimed at business travelers

June 22, 2016

The premise of Upside is simple enough: Reward business travelers with gift cards for being a little more flexible with their flight and hotel.

Pulling this off is a bit more complicated.

“When Priceline was created, we knew that flexibility would become an extraordinary asset in the modern commercial world,” Walker told Fortune in an interview. “We also knew that to really make it work you needed enormous software power and you needed all kinds of tools that didn’t yet exist.

Get the full story at Fortune

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/priceline_founder_launches_new_company_aimed_at_business_travelers

Fodor’s Travel to be acquired by Internet Brands

June 22, 2016

The agreement reflects the growing value and potential of digital and mobile consumer engagement with travel information and content. Terms of the transaction were not made public. The closing between the parties is expected to be completed shortly.

Currently celebrating the 80th anniversary of its first guidebook publication in 1936 by founder Eugene Fodor, Fodor's today offers broad-ranging travel information on about 7,500 destinations worldwide through its print and online coverage. Fodors.com, its pioneering website, which debuted 20 years ago, receives more than 4.5 million unique monthly visitors. Fodor's publishes more than 150 active print guides, over 250 e-book titles, and 25 mobile apps, and has more than one million cumulative subscribers to its daily and weekly newsletters.

Fodor's will become part of Internet Brands' consumer Home/Travel group, whose portfolio of online travel brands provide business and leisure travelers with vital information about all aspects of their journeys, from best deals on airline tickets to selecting the ideal hotel. Internet Brands intends to apply its technological expertise and knowledge of digital interest groups and content verticals to grow the Fodor's online audience and user engagement, while retaining its celebrated print guides.

Penguin Random House will continue to sell and distribute Fodor's print guides to the book trade on behalf of Internet Brands. While the majority of its content is published online, Internet Brands is experienced in print publication. With previous acquisitions such as Nolo, a publisher of legal guidebooks for consumers, the company has grown its legal content websites while maintaining its Nolo Press active print-publishing program.

"The Fodor's name is legendary, and we have a deep appreciation for its history and the direct impact Fodor's has on the way people explore new places," said Bob Brisco, CEO at Internet Brands. "Internet Brands has a proven history of navigating legacy brands to strong growth in the digital world. We're confident that Internet Brands is the ideal partner to ensure that the Fodor's brand continues to guide travelers for generations to come."

Markus Dohle, CEO of Penguin Random House, said, "We couldn't be more proud of all that Fodor's has accomplished as a highly popular and innovative travel-content brand, whose own great journey has been its transformation from a print to a digital company, with an outstanding digital portfolio to match the quality of its iconic print guides. For Fodor's to now reach its fullest e-commerce potential we believe the best path forward is for it to become part of Internet Brands: highly motivated tech entrepreneurs and content creators who share our passion for the brand, and have the focus, drive, and resources to deliver greater benefits to consumers and to business partners from Fodor's online presence. We look forward to working with Internet Brands to ensure that Fodor's print guides continue to thrive."

Headquartered in El Segundo, Calif., Internet Brands® is a fully integrated online media and software services organization focused on four high-value vertical categories: Automotive, Health, Legal and Home /Travel. The company's award-winning consumer websites lead their categories and serve more than 100 million monthly visitors, while a full range of web presence offerings has established deep, long-term relationships with SMB and enterprise clients. Internet Brands' powerful, proprietary operating platform provides the flexibility and scalability to fuel the company's continued growth. For more information, please visit http://www.internetbrands.com.

The Fodor's name has been synonymous with travel for 80 years. Our award-winning guidebooks, website, eBooks, and mobile apps provide today's traveler with up-to-the-minute information to over 7,500 worldwide destinations. Our vast team of global correspondents offers highly curated, expert advice on how to travel smarter, from the best arts and culture offerings, to tips and strategies for an authentic and immersive experience, and the right hotels and restaurants for every taste and budget. Learn more at Fodors.com and join our engaged travel community on Facebook (facebook.com/FodorsTravel), Twitter (@fodorstravel) and Instagram (@FodorsTravel). Fodor's Travel is an imprint of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/fodors_travel_to_be_acquired_by_internet_brands

STR: US hotel performance for May 2016

June 22, 2016

Compared with May 2015, the U.S. hotel industry's occupancy dipped 0.5% to 67.0%. However, average daily rate for the month was up 2.4% to US$123.87, and revenue per available room grew 1.9% to US$83.01.

"The 5.0% RevPAR increase we saw last month appears to have been an outlier rather than a reversal of fortune," said Patrick Mayock, STR's senior director of research and development. "In May, growth slowed to 1.9%—the lowest of any month this year. And year-to-date RevPAR growth (+3.0%) is the lowest since the recovery started in 2010.

"On an absolute basis, however, the hotel industry is actually quite strong, with occupancy, ADR and RevPAR all reaching record highs for the May year-to-date period."

Among the Top 25 Markets, Dallas, Texas, recorded the largest increase in occupancy (+5.3% to 73.3%) and the only double-digit lift in RevPAR (+12.9% to US$76.32). ADR in the market was up 7.2% to US$104.15.

Los Angeles/Long Beach, California, was the only Top 25 Market to post a double-digit rise in ADR (+10.1% to US$167.75).

Houston, Texas, reported the largest decreases in each of the three key performance metrics. Occupancy fell 8.2% to 65.4%; ADR was down 6.5% to US$113.45; and RevPAR dropped 14.2% to US$74.21.

Chicago, Illinois, was the only other market to experience a double-digit decline for any of the three metrics. RevPAR in the market fell 10.0% to US$115.21.

"As has been a common theme of late, the Top 25 Markets underperformed all other markets in May," Mayock said. "However, Dallas once again emerged as a notable bright spot as the only market to report double-digit RevPAR growth."

Read also "U.S. hotels ADR growth slows"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/str_us_hotel_performance_for_may_2016

The TripAdvisor cheat sheet for hotel marketers

June 22, 2016

For every point your TripAdvisor score increases, hotels can expect an average revenue increase of 39%. Revenue increases when you respond to negative reviews.

In this eBook, you will learn how to improve your hotel’s TripAdvisor ranking and increase revenue. You’ll find more than 50 tips, tactics, and examples so you can:

- Get more reviews from happy guests.

- Build a positive guest feedback culture at your hotel that will keep your team engaged.

- Respond to your reviews with authenticity and panache.

Download the eBook at Hive Marketing (PDF 1.4 MB)

Related Link: Hive Marketing

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_tripadvisor_cheat_sheet_for_hotel_marketers

Lessons advertisers can learn from the travel industry

June 22, 2016

New tactics, like sequential storytelling, where advertisements can reflect and follow the path to purchase, has become a powerful strategy pioneered by travel that breaks away from the standard advertising tactics.

Because travel sits in a complicated place in people’s lives, travel advertising has to reflect that. For instance, travel is made up of a number of purchases: flight, hotel, car, and events while you’re there - the list goes on and on. Additionally, travel purchases happen all the time, for all kinds of reasons: it’s one of the first things that people splurge on when they have extra money, and is also one of the first ‘extravagant’ purchases cut back on during lean times. Travel, then, has a fairly unique and often serpentine path to purchase.

Therefore, sending a one-off, random ad on a website will be ineffective for travel advertising. Instead, creating a story that brings the traveler through the path to purchase is a much more effective, far less invasive method of advertising.

Get the full story at MarTech Advisor

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/lessons_advertisers_can_learn_from_the_travel_industry

How Google hotel reviews impact your hotel

June 22, 2016

As of recent, a few online reputation providers now offer hotels the ability to push their solicited guest reviews directly to Google.

As an example, earlier this year TrustYou launched TrustYou Stars, a guest satisfaction survey solution that allows hotels to collect guest reviews and then push them to Google as a Google review that is shown below the review summary. TrustYou also provides hotel review scores and review summaries for more than 300,000 hotels on Google. These review scores and summaries are calculated based on an analysis of quantity, quality, and recency of reviews across the web as well as from TrustYou Stars surveys.

But what does this really mean for hotels and why should they care?

Get the full story at TrustYou

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_google_hotel_reviews_impact_your_hotel

SiteMinder launches ‘Prophet’, real-time hotel pricing intelligence for the modern age

June 22, 2016

Prophet is being unveiled at HITEC and forms the latest addition to SiteMinder’s award-winning suite of smart and simple technology for hoteliers who are looking to attract, reach and convert guests globally online.

SiteMinder’s managing director, Mike Ford, says, “Prophet is about empowering the world’s hoteliers who know revenue management is critical but don’t have the time, budget or expertise to harness the rapidly-changing rate and market data available to them and use it to their advantage. Prophet purposefully breaks market rate and demand intelligence down into consumable and meaningful insights that matter, so hoteliers can optimise room rates, maximise profitability, and stay ahead of competition easily and at an affordable cost.”

Get the full story at SiteMinder

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/siteminder_launches_prophet_real_time_hotel_pricing_intelligence_for_the_mo

Hotels no longer sell rooms, they sell experiences

June 21, 2016

To lure young travelers, Marriott has created the hotel brand Moxy, which doesn't cater to guests, but "fun-hunters," according to Marriott's global brand officer Tina Edmundson.

What's the difference between a guest and a fun-hunter? "They're really excited, they're full of life, they want to discover new things," says Edmundson.

To cater to this, Moxy offers communal spaces, where guests can take in a Foosball session, or a game of Cards Against Humanity. Rooms are laid out differently, with no closet space, and bathrooms that are larger and more luxurious than a standard hotel room.

"The majority of guests that are traveling on business don't unpack," she explains. "They don't want the cookie-cutter experience. They're looking for something new; they're looking for authenticity."

Get the full story at CNN

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotels_no_longer_sell_rooms_they_sell_experiences

Airbnb and Priceline fight to be the first stop in travel planning

June 21, 2016

Unicorn and media-magnet Airbnb has always been great at communicating who it is and what it does. Airbnb brought hotel alternatives like mushroom dome cabins, treehouses, and your buddy’s San Francisco studio into the mainstream, leading it to a $25.5 billion valuation and a reputation as a hotel industry-killer. However, it more immediately challenges online travel agencies (like Priceline Group) and their $200 billion in annual bookings.

Priceline, meanwhile, is the Airbnb of 1999, all grown up. The once-buzzy company known for its commercials starring William Shatner faced hard times when the dot com bubble burst, but has since rebuilt itself into a massive $66 billion company with six core brands: Priceline.com, Open Table, Agoda, RentalCars.com, Kayak, and perhaps the most direct Airbnb competitor, Booking.com. Altogether, Priceline Group raked in $2 billion in quarterly revenue and $374 million in profits in the spring of 2016. Part of the reason for that success? Powerful acquisitions and a focused vision.

Airbnb needs Priceline’s money-making prowess, while Priceline needs Airbnb’s powerful branding. Here's how the two rivals compare.

Get the full story at Fast Company

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/airbnb_and_priceline_fight_to_be_the_first_stop_in_travel_planning

Chinese outbound travelers shrug off declines in yuan value

June 21, 2016

For, the yuan's descent against the greenback is unlikely to hurt the market for outbound trips of Chinese tourists, experts said.

Although local currency exchange rates matter in trips to all destinations, not just the United States, it's the dollar-yuan rate that has implications for other rates.

But, given the yuan's internationalization, reasonable fluctuations in currency exchange rates are to be expected, and should not cause undue concern, said Jiang Yiyi, director of the International Tourism Development Institute, which operates under the aegis of the China Tourism Academy.

She said the yuan's current weakness had only a marginal effect on Chinese tourists' purchasing power abroad. "The impact is minor."

Get the full story at China Daily

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/chinese_outbound_travelers_shrug_off_declines_in_yuan_value

Hilton launches content platform dedicated to the male consumer

June 21, 2016

M&M, or ‘Moms & Millennials,’ are normally the go-to sectors that are targeted by the majority of leisure travel campaigns, while men are typically bombarded with business-focused travel ads. Now, the Hilton Hotels & Resorts chain has spotted a previously un-tapped opportunity and is shifting its marketing tactics to a typically untouched audience: men and fathers.

With a mission statement, ‘Empowering men to plan the perfect trip,’ a male traveler can visit the platform for inspiration of future trips, fill out quizzes and discover new spots for vacation.

The site also features advice columns where budding travel connoisseurs can read up on how to get the most out of their next travel journey.

Get the full story at PSFK

Related Link: Hilton Travel MANager

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hilton_launches_content_platform_dedicated_to_the_male_consumer

Why mobile marketing is essential for attracting summer travelers

June 21, 2016

Summer is here and for many families, that means it's time to travel. And for many business owners, the season brings increased revenues from visiting out of towners. Like most other things, the internet is changing the way consumer plan for summer vacations. A recent survey reveals that mobile devices are key to the ways people find where to go and what to do when they make travel plans.

The internet is full of information and mobile devices make that information readily available. It's easy to see how the two combined could be a powerful force for people planning to travel and those visiting new locations. Opera Mediaworks recently surveyed 1,000 consumers and learned, unsurprisingly, that mobile, is the number one tool for travel research.

As one would imagine, mobile devices are helpful for people searching for things to do once they're at their destination. However, the Opera Mediaworks shows that the internet and mobile devices play a large role in helping people decide where they want to travel.

Get the full story at Inc.com

Read also "Mobile now #1 for travel research and booking among U.S. travelers"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/why_mobile_marketing_is_essential_for_attracting_summer_travelers

Facebook is predicting the end of the written word

June 21, 2016

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, has already noted that video will be more and more important for the platform. But Mendelsohn went further, suggesting that stats showed the written word becoming all but obsolete, replaced by moving images and speech.

“The best way to tell stories in this world, where so much information is coming at us, actually is video,” Mendelsohn said. “It conveys so much more information in a much quicker period. So actually the trend helps us to digest much more information.”

In the room, there was a perceptible shifting—perhaps because the written word seems a rather major aspect of civilization to dispatch with so quickly. But it won’t disappear entirely, Mendelsohn assured the crowd: “You’ll have to write for the video.”

Get the full story Quartz and Kottke

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/facebook_is_predicting_the_end_of_the_written_word

6 social media strategies to help you thrive in today’s complex travel shopping journey

June 21, 2016

Today’s travel shopping journey has never been more complex. In Leonardo’s recent webinar, “Strategies to Thrive in Today’s Complex Travel Shopping Journey,” we discussed the chaotic reality that hotel consumers today have never been more inundated with information across multiple channels – before, during and even after their travel experience.

During their journey, consumers will collect information about your hotel destination through a proliferation of avenues, including organic and paid search, online travel agencies (OTAs), metasearch, display and retargeting advertising, online review sites and social media.

As hotel marketers, today’s noisy landscape presents both an exciting and daunting challenge.

Get the full story at Leonardo

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/6_social_media_strategies_to_help_you_thrive_in_todays_complex_travel_shopp

RateGain partners with Hotelogix to build an integrated cloud-based hospitality solution

June 21, 2016

RateGain Technologies recently joined-hands with cloud-based PMS Hotelogix, seeking to equip hotels for further expansion. Hotelogix provides global hoteliers with a practical, cloud-based solution to handle typical operational challenges.

Both RateGain and Hotelogix share a common vision of equipping small and medium establishments to grow their business. Together with Hotelogix, RateGain has come up with an innovative integrated hospitality solution which is a seamless combination of two evolved products.

RateGain’s potent channel manager and automated revenue management tool caters to the hospitality segment, globally. This wide range of operation offered through an integrated platform, will cater to the global market as well as reinforce penetration mainly in India, US and EMEA regions.

Prabhash Bhatnagar, the founder of Hotelogix cited that, “Hotelogix is happy to extend its platform approach to RateGain products. Together, we have come up with a powerful solution for the hospitality segment. This integrated tool is an option for hotels, particularly independent and multi-property groups, to use two advanced solutions in tandem, thereby arming them to stay competitive in the market, which will help them take their business to new heights.”

Bhanu Chopra, founder and CEO of RateGain Technologies says, “We share a common mission with Hotelogix to help properties maximize both revenue and process efficiency. The complete two-way integration of their PMS with our channel manager and revenue management interface supports RateGain’s continued effort to do that seamlessly.”

Related Link: RateGain

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/rategain_partners_with_hotelogix_to_build_an_integrated_cloud_based_hospita

Mobile now #1 for travel research and booking among U.S. travelers

June 20, 2016

Opera Mediaworks surveyed 1,000 mobile users in the U.S. across our mobile ad platform to find out how they use their mobile devices for researching and booking flights, accommodations and activities.

The survey findings suggest that mobile is now #1 for travel research and booking among U.S. travelers. When asked whether they prefer to research on desktop or mobile, and 66% preferred mobile. And for booking, still 51% said they preferred mobile.

Opera Mediaworks took a look at the mobile-first habits and found that 45% rely on mobile apps when booking accommodations and activities; one in three travelers said that mobile apps like TripAdvisor and Yelp are their go-to resource when researching.

This is definitely part of a deeper trend of consumers spending more time in high quality apps that add real value to their “everyday.” In fact, travel apps are among the top 5 categories of apps where mobile ad campaigns are seeing higher levels of engagement.

But what is the mobile traveler’s path to purchase? What gets them from researching to actually booking accommodations and activities? That is the key answer that we wanted to answer for mobile marketers. Here’s what we found:

- One in four consumers that we surveyed said that an email announcement will initiate the booking process for them, and one in three say an ad with a special offer will initiate booking.

- Another one in three said the existence of booking apps (Southwest, JetBlue, Orbitz) on their device makes them more likely to book on their mobile device.

- Another third of travelers say that having research apps (TripAdvisor, Yelp, etc.) would make them more likely to engage in travel activities, such as eating at restaurants, going to museums, events and more.

Get the full story at Opera Mediaworks

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/mobile_now_1_for_travel_research_and_booking_among_u.s._travelers

New York votes to ban ads for whole apartments on Airbnb

June 20, 2016

As part of a flurry of end-of-term approvals, the state's assembly and senate have voted for a bill that would make it illegal just to advertise your entire place for a short (under 30 days) rental. You'll face a $1,000 fine the first time you're caught, $5,000 the second time and $7,500 the third. Governor Cuomo still has to sign the bill into law, but that's likely to be a mere formality.

Assuming the measure becomes law, it'll please some local residents as well as the hotel and real estate businesses. They've complained that services like Airbnb enable illegal hotels that both take away apartments for honest-to-goodness residents and drive up rental rates at the units that are left. In theory, this makes it too costly to even consider the tactic -- unless the offending hosts lie about the nature of their rentals, it could be too costly to run these makeshift accommodations.

Not surprisingly, Airbnb isn't happy. It portrays the bill's approval as a conspiracy between the government and the hotel industry, and argues that it'll increase the odds of "bankruptcy, eviction, or foreclosure" for 30,000 state residents who might otherwise struggle to make ends meet.

Get the full story at Engadget

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/new_york_votes_to_ban_ads_for_whole_apartments_on_airbnb

Luxury travelers are bored with big hotel brands

June 20, 2016

Luxury has become less about frills -- many of which have become standardized across the industry -- and more about an experience of simplicity where "people feel incredibly connected with the destination and the local way of life," says Boyen, who began his 30-year hospitality career as a commis chef.

Big luxury hotel brands face a big new challenge in attracting high-end travelers: boredom. That's according to hospitality industry veteran Filip Boyen.

"Luxury is evolving all the time, I think what is important to us is to understand what the customer feels luxury is," says Boyen, chief executive officer of industry player Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH).

Get the full story at CNBC

Read also "Hotels and resorts adapt as face of luxury continues to change"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/luxury_travelers_are_bored_with_big_hotel_brands

Barriers of entry low to get reduced rates with hotel loyalty programs

June 20, 2016

Major hotel brands have recently upped the ante in the fight for direct bookers. Hilton Worldwide, Marriott International, Hyatt Hotels Corp., InterContinental Hotels Group, and Choice Hotels International are among the chains that have incentivized direct booking by lowering rates for loyalty members who book direct. Sloan Dean, VP of revenue optimization for the Ashford Group expects to continue to see offerings tied to company loyalty programs that differentiate the stay experience for guests, countering the OTAs’ offerings. But if one were to ask the OTAs how they feel about this “battle,” they’re not exactly readying their weapons. At least, Expedia isn’t.

“This strategy is an interesting one to us, because it appears to us that the battle between the big chains is for a finite, existing pool of loyalty bookers,” says Adam Anderson, managing director of industry relations at Expedia. “This actually puts us outside the battle, as we have a very different customer.”

Anderson explains that OTAs like Expedia attract the brand-agnostic traveler. Basically, brands are fighting for customers who will never commit to a monogamous relationship with only one brand.

Get the full story at Lodging magazine

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/barriers_of_entry_low_to_get_reduced_rates_with_hotel_loyalty_programs

Hotels are overrated: Reviews on travel websites are rarely honest

June 20, 2016

That is not a problem as long as everyone knows the rules of the game. And the fact that we can all now review the places we stay in is probably the single most important reason why service levels have risen.

Checking out online what others think of a hotel is now so common that there is no place for the substandard places to hide. But there remains one problem: now that we are all so overly generous, there is no way to distinguish the truly mindblowing establishments from the merely pretty good.

It would help us all if reviewers were more truthful.

Get the full story at The Economist

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotels_are_overrated_reviews_on_travel_websites_are_rarely_honest

U.S. hotels ADR growth slows

June 20, 2016

This May, the average trivago online room rate in Boston, despite a dip of (−6.4%) from last year, hit $380 a night, making the city the most expensive destination among the top-25 U.S. hotel markets. New York takes the second place in May with an online room rate of $359, after a drop of (−3.2%) from a year ago. In Washington D.C., the online room rate in May is growing (+6.7%) from last year to $350 a night, ranking the city in the third place of the most expensive destinations in the United States.

At the bottom of the list, the three least expensive, or most affordable, cities to visit this May are: Salt Lake City recording a trivago online ADR of $130 a night after a (+0.8%) change from a year ago; Phoenix posts an online ADR of $123 following a (+3.4%) change from last year; and lastly, the most affordable popular destination in the country is San Antonio with an online ADR of $123 after a nil change from a year ago. With a median online ADR of $183 amongst the top-25 most popular U.S. destinations, Denver is the country's average affordable city to visit this May.

Get the full story at Hospitality.Net

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/us_hotels_adr_growth_slows

Four considerations for developing your hotel’s pricing strategy

June 20, 2016

Hotels devote large portions of their revenue management strategies around developing and implementing the right pricing structure for their property and market. But establishing the right pricing structure isn’t a one-off activity – and with the hotel’s bottom line depending heavily on revenue generated from the implementation of an proper pricing strategy, it is critical that hoteliers routinely and thoughtfully evaluate their pricing options to determine which approach best fits the needs of their business and technologies.

Today’s advanced technology offers pricing options that suit a variety of unique business needs and markets, and hotels should carefully choose the approach that fits their objectives – rather than limiting their needs to fit a one-size-fits-all option.

Get the full story at IDeaS

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/four_considerations_for_developing_your_hotels_pricing_strategy

The hotelier’s guide to social media

June 20, 2016

What social media can do for your hotel:

- Transforming customer service. Want to hear and respond to complaints? Want to know what people love about your property? All of those conversations take place online—on people’s Twitter and Facebook feeds. Reaching out and connecting with guests about their complaints and compliments in real-time is an effective tactic for managing their experiences.

- Know your competition. Just as people will talk about your property on social media, they do the same for your competition. See what people say about others and use that information to hone your own messaging.

- Alternative avenue for marketing. Using social media, you can get more, and often free, advertising. #socialselling

- Express your brand. Are you a fun party property? Are you known for having a luxurious spa? Your social media accounts allow you to further embody your brand, and ultimately reach more in-market travelers.

Get the full story at Sojern

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_hoteliers_guide_to_social_media

Booking.com announces global release of RateIntelligence

June 17, 2016

RateIntelligence is the latest innovation of BookingSuite, an company within the Booking.com group of companies dedicated to empowering accommodation providers with smart, powerful technology that enables them to serve the needs of their customers and at the same time help them grow their businesses.

RateIntelligence is the only tool of its kind to provide accommodation providers with daily updates on market demand data and rate shopping insights for their property 360 days in advance. In addition, through a launch promotion, partners who sign up for RateIntelligence before September 30 2016 can enjoy free access to the product for as long as they remain a partner.

"Accommodation providers today are eager for tools that enable them to respond in real-time to market and competitive shifts ,” said Rob Ransom, Global Director of BookingSuite. “With RateIntelligence, our partners now have easy access to a product that enables them to make better pricing decisions in less time.”

Get the full story at Booking.com

Read also "Booking.com's Rate Manager now available to all hotels worldwide"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/booking.com_announces_global_release_of_rateintelligence

How personalisation is affecting business travel

June 17, 2016

The potential impact of personalisation and the use of data on the managed business travel industry has been much debated in recent years, but when will it really start to bear fruit? And will it mark the start of a bright new dawn in the way companies operate their travel policies and programmes?

We have all seen how data is being increasingly used by companies to target us as consumers – search for one product or company online, and then a short time later you will probably see its adverts popping up on a completely unrelated site. Similarly, supermarket loyalty cards are using data about our shopping habits to bombard us with personalised offers.

While personalisation is permeating into our everyday lives, there are only a few signs of it taking root within corporate travel. In fact, several buyers have criticised the failure of suppliers to keep up with up with these consumer technologies, particularly with products such as self-booking tools (SBTs). One buyer even decried the technology of some travel management companies (TMCs) for “still using green screens”.

Get the full story at Buying Business Travel

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_personalisation_is_affecting_business_travel

Metasearchers need to go beyond affordable fares

June 17, 2016

Speaking to TTG Asia e-Daily on the sidelines of a panel discussion yesterday, Imbert Fung, director Southeast Asia of Kayak, said: “Ultimately for the travel industry (and its various product segments) including hotels, car rental or flight products, there will (eventually be a greater focus on) differentiation rather than price.

“There will definitely be players, especially luxury players, who want to put in additional attributes that they know people will be willing to pay for.”

Elaborating, Fung said: “Passengers have so many choices with flights these days and price is important but maybe ultimately they want a comfortable flight with Wi-Fi on board and maybe there can be a simple filter we can provide (for that).

Get the full story at TTG Asia

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/metasearchers_need_to_go_beyond_affordable_fares

The secrets to saving money when booking hotels

June 17, 2016

Booking sites such as Booking.com are useful for gathering information about the hotels in an area, but it is important to remember that they take a big cut when you book with them. This can vary from 15pc to 30pc.

Our check on prices using different booking sites showed that they were often considerably more expensive than the hotel's own website.

A double room at the Premier Inn County Hall in central London on June 28 was €75 cheaper on the hotel's website than on Booking.com. The hotel's website was actually €20 cheaper than the price quoted when we rang up the hotel directly.

Get the full story at Independent.ie

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_secrets_to_saving_money_when_booking_hotels

Why proper keyword research is so important for your hotel

June 17, 2016

To begin your keyword research it helps to start with some broad terms like “[city name] hotels” or “hotels in [city name]”. Then find major venues, attractions and events that happen near your hotel, such as “hotels near [venue]” or “hotels near [event name]”. You also want to determine what your hotel’s differentiators are. For example, if your hotel offers 2 bedroom suites, or pet friendly accommodations you can choose “2 bedroom suites in [city name]”, or “pet friendly hotels in [city name].”

That will give you a pretty solid list to begin. Start plugging those variations into the tools mentioned above to determine the keyword competition, as well as keyword variants you may not have thought about. Now that you have a full list of potential keywords to target, it is time to segment those keywords by searcher intent as well as competition.

Looking at your list of keywords, try to envision what type of content you would create to rank for that keyword. If you can’t fulfill searcher intent you probably shouldn’t target that keyword.

Get the full story at Fuel

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/why_proper_keyword_research_is_so_important_for_your_hotel

Google Local three pack and the “I want to go” micro-moment

June 17, 2016

Introduced in 2014, the local three pack is a feature that occupies the top of the organic portion of the organic SERP, provides a map of the user’s area, and provides address and contact information for three physical locations that might meet the needs of the user. It also provides review scores for each of the three listings.

If a brand has physical locations this result drives traffic to physical locations as well as traffic to a website. If not, then keywords with this SERP feature need to be noted because significantly less traffic is going to make its way down to the traditional web listings.

In addition, Google has come on strong lately with the micro-moments concept. They believe that users have very specific motivations that brands can understand and help to answer. In response, Google is trying to provide content which is focused on providing a simple answer to the user’s need.

Get the full story at The Bright Edge blog and Think with Google

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/google_local_three_pack_and_the_i_want_to_go_micro_moment

SnapShot Analytics Platform goes public in time for HITEC 2016

June 17, 2016

SnapShot Analytics is no longer an invitation-based platform, as the leading hotel analytics company offers its latest dashboard in a "self-service" version in time for HITEC 2016. Demand for an open version of the management tool has prompted this release. Now hotels with connected PMS will be able to access SnapShot Analytic for single or multiple properties and the current version remains free.

"Since ITB Berlin, we have been overwhelmed with requests for SnapShot Analytics," said Dr. Stefan Tweraser, CEO. "We already had many thousands of hotels waiting for more information, and, since ITB Berlin in March, more than a thousand hotels have subscribed to SnapShot Analytics, with many more on the waiting list. We figured we needed to make it easier for hotels to subscribe, so we've automated the process, and we're really happy to open SnapShot Analytics to every hotel, providing that their PMS partner is connected to our system."

SnapShot Analytics, is the premier cloud-based hotel analytics tool, with multi-property functionality - the first of its kind to offer a powerful, yet flexible and easy-to-use dashboard. Multi-property Analytics is simple to use and set up, and can be customized individually, to meet the needs of every hotel management team. SnapShot's collaborations with large international PMS companies like Oracle Hospitality, Protel, Itesso as well as local leaders such as Silverbyte, Stardekk and dozens more, gives SnapShot clients a powerful analytics tool. Partnerships with key hospitality education institutions like ESSEC Business School, Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne, and the University of Surrey, have made SnapShot an industry leader in hotel data and analytics.

"The response to SnapShot Analytics has surpassed our expectations. Due to the strong collaborations and integrations made with our strategic PMS partners, we've had so many hotels subscribing to our new Analytics platform that we needed a more automated solution. By launching our online sign-up process, we open the possibility for thousands of hotels to immediately start experiencing SnapShot Analytics," said David Turnbull, COO.

A digital platform that enables hoteliers to manage everything from revPAR to Instagram engagement and beyond, SnapShot Analytics aggregates data from various sources like the hotel's PMS system, STR, OTA Expert, Trip Advisor, Google Analytics, and social media, all within the same platform. It offers simple, yet powerful data and analytics, organized to show what is most important for the hotel, at the right time. Interested hoteliers can gain access here (insert link) or call (insert number) for additional information.

Related Link: SnapShot

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/snapshot_analytics_platform_goes_public_in_time_for_hitec_2016

IDeaS launches Ideal Pricing for hoteliers

June 17, 2016

The new pricing collection is part of the IDeaS G3 Revenue Management System (G3 RMS) platform. IDeaS G3 RMS empowers users to increase revenue performance with the industry's most comprehensive pricing decisions, sophisticated forecasting and interactive dashboards and reporting tools – regardless of hotel size or structure. Ideal Pricing further advances IDeaS' approach to revenue management as the most sophisticated, yet easy-to-use solution available to hotel types of all sizes worldwide.

"Hotels need more than one approach to pricing to capture optimal revenues relative to their strategy, average length of stay, guest preferences and distribution needs," said Sanjay Nagalia, Chief Operating Officer at IDeaS. "Our highly configurable G3 RMS gives hotels more pricing choices than any other vendor, and allows hoteliers to choose the approach that meets the needs of their business mix and distribution systems. Building on the power of our successful integrated approach, Ideal Pricing functionality incorporates pricing and inventory controls that allow hotels to maximize their revenue like never before."

Ideal Pricing offers a flexible approach towards analytics-based pricing and provides options that generate demand- and market-relevant rates, automatically determining differential price points by room type rather than user-defined rules. System users have the option to configure rate levels or deploy continuous rates analytically optimized within a defined range. Ideal Pricing for transient business includes:

- Daily Pricing – often referred to as "BAR by Day," produces a different rate for each night of a guest's stay

- Length of Stay (LOS) Pricing – commonly called "BAR by LOS," charges one blended rate based upon the arrival date and total duration of a guest's stay

- Daily Continuous Pricing – allows hotels to identify their minimum and maximum public thresholds and rates are produced through analytical, continuous optimization within that range

IDeaS Ideal Pricing also offers enhanced Group Pricing for hoteliers. Designed to deliver even greater value to IDeaS G3 RMS, the new functionality provides clients with many powerful, time-saving features, such as:

- Group Pricing by Room Type – perform evaluations by room type to support specific group requirements, or at the hotel level to create a blended price quotation for reservations and sales to provide to meeting planners

- Alternative Date Recommendation – automatically recommend alternative dates that result in more incremental revenue and the most profitability for the hotel, by placing the group on other dates that still meet the request of the group inquiry

- Multiple Property Evaluation – enables placement of the business in the property that benefits the most to maximize incremental revenue across the portfolio

Lindner Hotels and Resorts, a leading European four-star hotel group, is transitioning their entire estate to IDeaS G3 RMS.

"We appreciate that IDeaS' pricing decisions are analytically derived by room type, unlike other solutions that only price at the total hotel level and apply rules to price the different room types. With IDeaS, we benefit from understanding true demand by each room type, and by length of stay, and can price accordingly," said Gunnar von Hagen, Corporate Director Operations and Central Project Management at Lindner Hotels and Resorts. "The ability to configure the pricing methodology by property is a distinct differentiator and provides us with the flexibility needed to work with our distribution partners and maximize revenue across our portfolio."

Related Link: IDeaS

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/ideas_launches_ideal_pricing_for_hoteliers

Hotel website referral traffic down significantly

June 16, 2016

The top 25 Hotel and Accommodations sites account for over 54% of all traffic. The leading site, AirBNB, is not a traditional hotel site, a sign of the changing face of the industry. Overall traffic to these 25 sites in the US decreased 17.54% between March 2015 and 2016.

Referral traffic went down significantly, presumably because more OTAs push for onsite bookings, and are referring less traffic out including to Hotel sites. Additionally, the growth of the sharing economy models of AirBNB, VRBO, and their likes increased direct and search traffic.

Although mobile visits increased to the accommodation category, the engagement metrics for mobile have gone down slightly, and bounce rate improved only slightly. Meanwhile, on desktop users seem to spend more time on these sites, which could be related to the proliferation of booking options on sites like AirBNB.

Download the full report at SimilarWeb (free registration)



Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotel_website_referral_traffic_down_significantly

How Marriott’s real-time command center cultivates social engagement, geo-fencing

June 16, 2016

Marriott has been consistently introducing new mobile-first initiatives to enhance guests’ experiences at its resorts and target potential customers via social media, playing into millennials’ tendencies to glean inspiration from friends’ or brands’ posts and book spur-of-the-moment trips. The hotel chain also developed an on-premises mobile chat platform, Mobile Requests, which enables guests to communicate with front-desk staff and request a variety of services and amenities via their smartphones.

Marriott’s attention has now turned to the popular mobile marketing strategy of geo-fencing, an initiative that prompted the brand to team up with location-based engagement platform HYP3R to more effectively target on-the-go social media users.

In a Q&A with Mobile Marketer, Marriott International’s senior director of global creative and content marketing, Matthew Glick, discusses the brand’s M Live command center and real-time social targeting strategy.

Get the full story at the Mobile Marketer

Read also "How Marriott personalizes at scale"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_marriotts_real_time_command_center_cultivates_social_engagement_geo_fen

Ritz-Carlton collates news and recommendations with new social presence

June 16, 2016

The social magazine site is Ritz-Carlton’s latest addition to its social media portfolio and features 12 different branded magazines covering a range of topics. Social media serves as the primary liaison between consumers and online content, so venturing to new platforms and finding new ways to package material will grant a brand more visibility.

“Stories about The Ritz-Carlton are shared around the world, every day, on a variety of Web sites, blogs, social networks, etc,” said Lisa Holladay, vice president marketing, The Ritz-Carlton. “These stories range from Vogue features about a new Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Bali’s Ubud region, to influencers like Trey Ratcliff photo-walking across the United States, to the story of a bride and groom in Cancun.

“Flipboard is one of the best platforms for collecting, and sharing these stories in a one place, making it easy for travelers to seek inspiration for their next discovery,” she said. “This initiative is really aimed at providing our guests with a single, authoritative source of stories from The Ritz-Carlton hotels around the globe.

Get the full story at Luxury Daily

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/ritz_carlton_collates_news_and_recommendations_with_new_social_presence

Former Google travel head weighs up Brexit

June 16, 2016

“There is no doubt there would be a huge hit on the sterling exchange rate and on the stock market the day after [a Leave vote] and there would be huge uncertainty.

“Individual sectors would be hurt more than others. Large numbers of people from overseas work here in the domestic travel sector. It helps with wage costs, but there is also a supply issue. There would clearly be an impact. The supply of overseas labour would stop.”

Huddleston says: “I’m convinced we would negotiate a deal with the EU and the only way to get good terms would be to accept some version of freedom of movement. That is a good thing. The Leave side is being naive [if it thinks we won’t]. But there would be at least a temporary period of uncertainty and it would make the UK less attractive for some EU residents.

Get the full story at Travel Weekly

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/former_google_travel_head_weighs_up_brexit

Five tourism websites guaranteed to give you wanderlust

June 16, 2016

With most hotel and travel companies providing all the information you need, from transport links to ‘things to do’, it’s easy to assume tourism websites might be overshadowed or left a little forgotten.

But as NYCGo demonstrates, it appears they're having somewhat of a resurgence.

Here are five more examples of sites that have been quietly producing some of the most slick and engaging content around.

Get the full story at Econsultancy

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/five_tourism_websites_guaranteed_to_give_you_wanderlust

The global state of ad blocking, in four charts

June 16, 2016

The 2016 Reuters Digital News report, which surveyed more than 50,000 online news consumers across 26 countries, shows ad blocking is most common among those who get news online and under 35s, the research showed. Smartphone users aren’t huge on ad blocking yet, with only 8 percent admitting they use it, however a third of interviewees said they plan to use an ad blocker in the next year.

The statistics vary hugely across the globe, however. For example, Poland has the highest percentage of ad blocking, at 38 percent. In Japan, only 10 percent say they block ads.

Poland’s high use of ad blocking could be put down to news websites being overloaded with ads, combined with heavy usage of illegal video streaming services which have “extremely intrusive” advertising, the research said. For the U.K., where ad blocking is at 21 percent, the research said newspapers have been hit the hardest because of ad blockers.

Get the full story at Digiday

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_global_state_of_ad_blocking_in_four_charts

Training your team for upselling by room trype and by rate option

June 16, 2016

By Doug Kennedy


After several years of solid RevPAR growth, most hotels are now seeing the increases slow. Of course each market is different, but this leveling off seems to mostly be due to an inability to push rate due to a flood of new hotel inventory as well as alternative lodging such as private rentals like HomeAway and AirBnB. Therefore, it is a wonderful time to revisit the topic of upselling with your front desk and reservations colleagues.

First, it is important to define upselling by accommodation type vs. upselling by rate. To avoid confusion, I prefer to refer to the later as rate optimization, which I will address first.

Too often when our KTN team mystery shops new clients, I still hear reservations agents offering discounts at the start of their calls before they are asked to do so. In other words, while asking for the dates, number in the party and for bedding preferences, they routinely ask “Do you have any discounts such as AAA or AARP?” This unnecessarily erodes ADR by extending lower rates to those who would otherwise not have asked. Likewise, front desk agents ask this question of walk-in guests even when they are not asking for a discount.

In an effort to compete with OTA’s, many hotel brands have been moving towards offering advance purchase, non-refundable rate options. However, reservations agents have not been trained to first qualify the caller to determine if they are interested in this option. Therefore, they provide both the “flexible” and “advance purchase” rates for all room types, which makes it confusing for the caller and time consuming for the agent. Or more likely, many agents seem only to be quoting the two rate options for a single room category – not even mentioning the others - all the while thinking they are “upselling.”

Instead, agents should be first explaining the terms of the advance purchase vs. flexible rate options, then offering the caller’s preferred rate option for two or three accommodation types.

Besides training agents to master rate optimization techniques, it is also necessary both reservations and also front desk staff on upselling by room category. Part of this involves training them to use various upselling techniques, but in conducting private upselling programs for my hotel and resort clients I find one major issue is a lack of familiarity with the actual rooms and suites themselves.

Therefore, a great starting place is to conduct familiarization tours encouraging colleagues to think of the various “guest stories” playing out daily at your hotel and how each room, suite or view might provide additional benefits for various guest prototypes. For example, families might want privacy and extra space but another major advantage of a suite is having two TV’s and/or two bathrooms. Although the staff might not be impressed by the views they see every day on the way to work, those visiting for special occasions might find it mesmerizing to look out their window and see the beach, mountains or city skyline.

As to upselling techniques, managers might have heard the following techniques before, but too often the new people standing behind your front desk right now have not. Make it a point to reinforce these at in-house training sessions and pre-shift line ups.

- First reassure the guest the minimal room is still a good choice. This is especially important for upselling at the front desk: “Currently we have you in our traditional room, which I’m sure you will find quite comfortable, however…” For reservations: “Our best value rate is for our traditional room, which has all the same amenities and services…”

- Create a sense of urgency. For front desk: “…however, we’ve had some of our (view rooms, executive club floor, or suites) open up this evening…” For reservations: “…however, at this time I still have a few of our (next level options) available for your dates…”

- Use rate framing. For front desk: “These rooms normally run $X, but tonight we have them for $Y.” For reservations: “These rooms normally run $X, but for your dates I can offer you a rate of $Y.”

- Use an incremental rate quotation technique: “For only $30 more you will receive…” Be specific on what is included and explain the benefits for the specific guest’s “story.”

Besides training your front desk and reservations teams on the proper techniques for upselling, it is also critically important to measure their results and to incentivize success. For front desk, it is easier to identify the incidents where colleagues upsell, as they can flag a guest record or do a print screen to document that a reservation was changed to a higher rate at check-in. For walk-ins, colleagues can document in the same ways.

However, for reservations agents it is more challenging to determine when a guest might have requested the special floor, better view or suite on their own. Depending on your inventory of accommodations there are several options. If your hotel only has a small percentage of upsell accommodations such as suites, find out how many they are selling on average per person right now and make that a quota. For example, if each agent averages 5 suite sales a week then that becomes the quota, but pay the upsell incentive for the 6th one and beyond. Again they can flag a reservation or do a print screen to document the sale of a suite. An easier alternative method is to simply calculate the “average revenue per booking” for each agent by dividing the hotel revenue they sold for the month by the number of reservations they booked. Chances are you will quickly see that some agents are taking more time to upsell to higher rated accommodations than others and be able to determine a threshold beyond which you will want to reward those who perform at a higher level.

Besides just measuring the staff’s individual results, it is also important to review them on a regular basis at your pre-shift meetings and to post them prominently in the office to challenge their competitive spirit.
Of course it is always an added motivation to tie-in an incentive or at minimum a contest to reward those who work harder to bring in more revenue.

Doug Kennedy is President of the Kennedy Training Network, Inc. a leading provider of customized training programs and telephone mystery shopping services for the lodging and hospitality industry.

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/training_your_team_for_upselling_by_room_trype_and_by_rate_option

Love footie, will fly: why premium hook-ups are a no-brainer for travel

June 16, 2016

From football pitch to super bowl, athletics track to boxing ring, sporting fans love to watch their team play and they love to travel to do so. In fact, sports travel & tourism is said to be worth $600 billion globally, according to research from World Travel Market.

Take FC Internazionale Milano, a club with some 100 million fans around the world. “We do have a captive audience,” admits Walker Fletcher FC Inter Managing Director Americas, who will be speaking at TDS North America later this year. “We travel a lot, our fans travel a lot and they have a greater propensity to travel than the average consumer.”

Most professional sports clubs are also pretty cash flush. Football and events like the Olympics may be in a different league altogether, but even the 30 clubs of the National Hockey League are expected to rack up $477 million in sponsorships for the 2015-2016 season, a rise of 6.7% on the previous comparable period.

With official sponsors paying over the odds, and promotions tightly controlled – especially for big events like the Olympics and Euro 2016. But even travel firms that aren’t ‘official sponsors’ try to leverage fans propensity to travel to promote offers either at home or in relevant feeder markets.

Get the full story at EyeForTravel

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/love_footie_will_fly_why_premium_hook_ups_are_a_no_brainer_for_travel

Travel embraces bots on messaging platforms

June 15, 2016

Since major messaging platforms like Facebook Messenger and workplace-chat app Slack introduced bots earlier this year, four travel brands - Kayak, Skyscanner and most recently Expedia.com and Cheapflights - have launched bots of their own.

Bots are artificial intelligence platforms that use instant messaging as an application interface. Facebook Messenger and Slack users, for example, can add these bots to friends lists and send messages to bots just like they’d message one of their friends. But with bots, consumers are talking to a database or program and not actually communicating with a human.

Hyatt Hotels, which began using Facebook Messenger in November 2015 to answer guests’ queries, let them make reservations and check availability, uses its customer relations staff to help guests on the platform. Hyatt told Skift, “creating and deploying a Facebook Messenger bot is something that we will explore in the future.”

Get the full story at Skift

Read also "Expedia’s first bot is for booking hotels", "Hotel booking using the Facebook messenger platform", and "Bots are the new apps: Microsoft reveals how artificial intelligence will book hotels"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/travel_embraces_bots_on_messaging_platforms

Airbnb’s digital disruption a reality the lodging industry can’t sleep off

June 15, 2016

At The Deal's Corporate Governance conference last week, former Starwood (HOT) CEO Frits Van Paasschen said the lodging industry is not immune to digital disruption, adding that Airbnb now has more listings than the three largest hotel companies have rooms.

"If you look at the online travel agencies, a company like Priceline (PCLN) that has Booking.com, it has a market cap equal to the combination of the major hotel companies," said Paasschen, noting that "digital disruption is a reality in any business."

But this disruption is critical to comprehend when evaluating a lodging company's board and management. Paasschen said the question is: "Can you find people to put on a board who understand both what's happening in the new world -- the digital world -- but also have a perspective of what the challenges are to make a transformation in a large organization with all the legacy systems that you have, all the different changes and behavior and process that need to be undertaken?"

Get the full story at The Street

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/airbnbs_digital_disruption_a_reality_the_lodging_industry_cant_sleep_off

Survey reports record-breaking increase in US leisure travel

June 15, 2016

Now in its 26th year, the MMGY Global Portrait of American Travelers is the most insightful and actionable survey of the emerging vacation habits, preferences & intentions of Americans. The study includes more than 400 variables, with the data provided on every variable for all travelers, by generation and by income group. By purchasing a subscription to this year's study, you will receive all data tables plus five research publications derived from this data that analyze major insights impacting the travel industry.

The newly released study highlights some surprising and significant shifts in travel perceptions. Take a look at the infographic below for three of the most impactful implications for the industry this year, including:

- Leisure Travel Experiencing Record Growth
- Microsegments: Redefining the Travel Trendsetters
- Are Travel Supplier Brands the New OTAs? And, Vice Versa?

Get the full story at Hospitality.Net

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/survey_reports_record_breaking_increase_in_us_leisure_travel

Amadeus gears up for a bigger chunk of China’s travel pie

June 15, 2016

Is Amadeus’ GDS value proposition currently being optimized in China? Is the travel B2B conglomerate marching ahead with its IT prowess in this market?

Before we delve deeper into how Amadeus’ two core business lines - distribution and IT – are shaping up in China, it is clear that Amadeus’ transaction processing model continues to pave way for a consistent financial growth. The conglomerate asserts that its business model is volume-driven and profitable, propelled by the fact that distribution and IT are two highly synergistic businesses. As for China, Amadeus is gradually reaping the benefits, even though the regulatory environment isn’t conducive enough.

“The market opening is unfortunately still very limited and progress is slow,” Albert Pozo, president, Amadeus Asia Pacific.

Get the full story at ChinaTravelNews

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/amadeus_gears_up_for_a_bigger_chunk_of_chinas_travel_pie

Hotels.com app integrates Uber

June 15, 2016

The new feature is available for Android users in 30 languages, with the user's current location and the hotel address automatically saved in the Uber app for a stress-free experience.

It's the latest hotel partnership for the ride-sharing service, with InterContinental Hotels Group – which includes brands such as the Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, Intercontinental and Kimpton –launching an Uber feature allowing guests to book a ride directly through the hotel's mobile app and earn hotel loyalty rewards only last year.

Hilton Worldwide also allows loyalty members to order an Uber to their hotel straight from their mobile app.

Get the full story at DigitalSpy

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotels.com_app_integrates_uber

US marketers plan to invest more in loyalty programs by 2017

June 15, 2016

According to the research, more than half of respondents said they plan to put more dollars into their loyalty programs next year. Almost half (44%) of all respondents said they will somewhat increase loyalty budgets, and 13% plan to significantly. Meanwhile, a mere 4% said they anticipate lowering investment.

In anticipation of having more dollars to play with for loyalty programs, marketers should think critically about what areas of their programs may attract increased participation rates. In a summer 2015 survey from Maritz Motivation Solutions, 43% of loyalty program members said the top reason for joining in summer 2015 was because of their desire to earn rewards.

Meanwhile, 31% said it was because it required a low effort to sign up. In fact, in another related study from October 2015, Colloquy uncovered that 81% of those who joined a loyalty program said they continued to participate because it was easy to understand. And 75% said they stayed because the rewards and offers were relevant to them.

Get the full story at eMarketer

Read also "The big tech drive to encourage hotel loyalty" and "Hotel loyalty programs growing members faster than engagement"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/us_marketers_plan_to_invest_more_in_loyalty_programs_by_2017

How to use Facebook Audience Insights to identify and reach new hotel guests

June 15, 2016

To access the Facebook Audience Insight tool, you must be logged into a Facebook account. Facebook has made this tool difficult to find – even a Google search will not allow you to access Audience Insights directly. The best way to access the tool is through this link. You will want to bookmark it for future use as well.

Once you are in, the fun begins. First, decide whether you want to view information about Facebook users who like your Page or information about everyone on Facebook. If you have a smaller Facebook following, as many hotels do, you may not get comprehensive data from looking at only those who are connected to your Page. I recommend starting with Facebook’s audience as a whole and narrowing your segment from there.

Every hotel is unique. Whether it is because of your brand, location, value, amenities, or a super secret niche that you rock but would never say out loud – your property will appeal to some users more than others. To begin, you will want to segment Facebook’s users to those that are relevant for your hotel’s unique character. You will notice that on the left hand side you can edit Location, Age and Gender, Interests, and Connections or opt for additional Advanced options.

Get the full story at Blue Magnet Interactive

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_to_use_facebook_audience_insights_to_identify_and_reach_new_hotel_guest

How has Golden Week travel changed over time?

June 15, 2016

For 2015’s Golden Week, the top countries to visit included: US, South Korea, Japan, China, and Hong Kong. In 2016, the top countries were: US, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and China.

What’s even more interesting is comparing this list to the top 5 countries before Golden Week—doing so gives us a feel for which destinations peak in popularity for the holiday season. The top five spots before GW are: US, Japan, China, Hong Kong, and South Korea.

When it comes to the top cities, Seoul, Hong Kong, and Los Angeles were last year’s top three. This year, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Dallas took the top spots. Seoul dropped to spot 5 and Hong Kong to spot 6.

Get the full story at Sojern

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_has_golden_week_travel_changed_over_time

Increased spontaneous and offseason vacations propel travel growth

June 14, 2016

International tourism will grow 4.3 percent in 2016, with demand highest in Asia and North America, according to a Positive Luxury study on the state of travel.

Alongside shifts to personalization and emphases on philanthropy and sustainability, assumptions about who travels and when travel happens are also breaking down. The continued growth of travel beyond that of other luxury sectors puts hotels in an enviable place, but capitalizing on that growth will require strategic shifts.

“Innovation in the sector is perhaps the biggest challenge to date, with consumers’ hunger for information putting pressure and demand on the industry, as well as the concept of niche and personalized travel, with brands having to think completely outside of the box to offer services beyond the norm,” said Tim Jackson, author of the report for Positive Luxury, London. “Within this new paradigm, hotels and travel operators will need to find the balance between the out of this world, immersive experience and having a positive impact on the environment and society.”

Get the full story at Luxury Daily

Read also "The U.S. tourist was a vital element to global tourism growth in 2016" at Skift

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/increased_spontaneous_and_offseason_vacations_propel_travel_growth

Airbnb CMO on communities, technology and storytelling

June 14, 2016

Q&A with Jonathan Mildenhall, CMO, Airbnb

What’s the biggest challenge to marketers today?

I genuinely think there’s never been a better time to be in marketing, because I can get closer to the consumer than ever before, I can harness the consumers’ creativity in ways that have never been imagined before, and all of the noise and all the distractions actually put a premium on creativity, stories and experiences. If you’re a marketer that likes to lean into outstanding creativity, brilliant experiences and telling great, great stories, there’s never been a better time to be in marketing. I look at it as the challenge of creative excellence.

What’s the challenge to Airbnb?

I come from a brand (Coca-Cola) that has 95 percent spontaneous awareness and I’m now working with a brand that has one percent spontaneous awareness. So as a marketer, my biggest challenge is to grow spontaneous awareness of Airbnb all over the world.

I’ll do that ensuring that Airbnb actually engages in pop culture in a really exciting, fresh and distinctive way. I have to use all of my creative, strategic and operational skills so that I can build Airbnb’s spontaneous awareness and I won’t rest until I get the same levels on Airbnb as I enjoyed in Coca-Cola.

Get the full story at The Economist

Read also "Airbnb’s CMO: ‘I don’t want public policy messaging to bleed into our brand voice’" at Digiday

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/airbnb_cmo_on_communities_technology_and_storytelling

The power of peers increasingly influences vacation choices

June 14, 2016

Hyatt Hotels Corp., for example, is so convinced of the importance of user-generated content that in March it launched a whole online campaign based around it. “Customers seem to trust user-generated content more to drive down that conversion path to booking,” said Adam Gerstel, an account executive for the online marketing company Olapic, which worked on the Hyatt project.

Indeed, vacation travel choices are increasingly being influenced by the social media posts friends and family post on their mobile phones, eclipsing the importance of professionally produced travel supplier online content, Phocuswright said in a recent report.

“Mobile has completely changed consumer behavior forever,” said Phocuswright director consumer research Marcello Gasdia. “The end of one traveler’s trip often sparks the beginning of another’s.”

Get the full story at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_power_of_peers_increasingly_influences_vacation_choices

Millennials are more likely to use travel agents than any other U.S. demographic

June 14, 2016

In the last year, 22 percent of Americans used a travel agent, an increase from 14 percent just three years ago, according to new research from the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA). Millennials are more likely to use an agent than any demographic group of older travelers, surprisingly.

“Millennials are leading the way in travel agent usage,” said ASTA president Zane Kerby. “Thirty percent have used a travel agent in the last 12 months, and they’re also most likely to recommend agents to a friend.”

A striking 45 percent of millennials polled said they’re likely to recommend a travel agent to a friend or family member. Overall, about two-thirds of those polled across all demographics said using an agent makes their trip better.

Get the full story at Skift

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/millennials_are_more_likely_to_use_travel_agents_than_any_other_u.s._demogr

Apple iOS Maps integrates with OpenTable

June 14, 2016

Apple Maps is getting a redesign in iOS 10. Apple is calling it an "all new design," but the real focus here is on the interface rather than the look of the maps. You'll now see much more of the map when you open up the app, being presented with little more than a squat search box to get started. The turn-by-turn navigation view has also been pared down, and Apple is now allowing users to swipe to move the view around while navigation is ongoing. You'll also be able to search for stops along your route. These updates are also coming to CarPlay.

In what could ultimately be a much bigger update, Maps is being opened up to third-party developers. Apple says, for instance, you'll now be able to search for a restaurant using OpenTable and then book a ride with Uber. Given that one of Apple Maps' problems has long been having worse listings than Google Maps, opening Maps up to third parties could go some ways toward resolving that.

Get the full story at The Verge and The Next Web

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/apple_ios_maps_integrates_with_opentable

The Microsoft LinkedIn deal: What it means for marketers

June 14, 2016

In past years, Bing Ads executives have talked about the breadth of user data that Microsoft has spanning work and personal accounts and hinted at a newfound willingness to open access to that data vault for ad targeting under Satya Nadella. In 2014, David Pann, Bing’s General Manager, told me in an interview that they were looking at ways to integrate with Azure, Microsoft’s cloud platform, and to leverage the business intelligence that platform offers. However, this messaging has never been widely articulated, and translating the value of that trove of data to advertisers has been muddled, if discussed at all.

Fast-forward two years, and the LinkedIn acquisition would seem to pave a clearer pathway for clearer messaging and data integrations.

The acquisition positions Microsoft as the leader in data on the professional world - both at the organizational and individual levels - and potentially offers advertisers: 1. More refined targeting, particularly for B2B advertisers; 2. More reach with the addition of the LinkedIn universe of 433 million users; and 3. More commercial opportunities via Cortana, Micorosoft’s digital assistant, as it is positioned as “the professional’s” digital assistant.

Get the full story at Marketing Land

Read also "How Microsoft and LinkedIn plan to take over the world" at Inc.com and "How Microsoft will put LinkedIn to work in Office" at TechCrunch

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_microsoft_linkedin_deal_what_it_means_for_marketers

5 reasons for booking abandonment & how to optimize your checkout

June 14, 2016

Problem #1: Just looking

According to Boxever, more than 50% of travelers don’t have a set destination in mind when planning a trip. They’re browsing, price shopping; waiting for the right deal or right location to jump out at them. This causes the time to conversion in travel to be twice as long as in traditional retail. Sale Cycle further suggests that consumers often use the basket page as a way of creating a “wish list” and building up an idea of what their dream vacation would be.

Solution

While it may seem like there’s little you can do in this scenario, there are ways to persuade travel shoppers to firm up their travel plans. First, lead with visuals. If a travel shopper is not set on a location, and your property is situated in a great one, then show it off on your homepage. This applies to highway or airport hotels just as much as it does to beautiful beach-front properties. A good location is subjective to the traveler. Know who your ideal guest is and tailor your content accordingly.

Hotel stories can also play a big role. Paint a picture of what experience hotel guests can expect at your property. Include information on local events and nearby attractions to convince them that the time to travel is NOW. For example, maybe your hotel is steps from a white sandy beach in Jamaica, or 1 hours’ drive from a great local wine trail. Don’t just talk about your property on your website, convey the value of travelling to your region.

Get the full story at Leonardo

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/5_reasons_for_booking_abandonment_how_to_optimize_your_checkout

5 ways your hotel should be managing room rates to get ahead of the competition

June 14, 2016

Among other things, your hotel should be monitoring the room rates of your competitors so you can see just how competitive your pricing is and react in a timely manner when needed.

Here are a few examples of what you can do with the information at hand:

1. Value-match competitors

One of the ways you can use competitor pricing to increase your hotel’s revenue is by matching them on price.

Set one room rate at the same price point as competitors, and set another room at a slightly higher rate. This allows you to attract deal seekers without sacrificing the opportunity to make a slightly bigger profit.

Keep in mind that value-for-money is the key point here – value-matching goes beyond bringing your hotel in line with your competitors’ rates or simply making your hotel rooms cheaper.

Get the full story at SiteMinder

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/5_ways_your_hotel_should_be_managing_room_rates_to_get_ahead_of_the_competi

‘Millennials are so last year’: How Yotel is marketing capsule hotels

June 13, 2016

The firm, started by Yo Sushi founders Simon Woodroffe and Gerard Greene in 2008, builds quirky capsule hotels targeted at “digital naturals” who are always online. Initially, that meant a younger clientele. But looking at data from Google Analytics and customer surveys, there’s nothing about Yotel’s customer profile (tech-savvy, independent travelers) that is age specific.

“We’re heading away from the age thing; those traditional demographics just don’t work any longer,” Fergus Boyd, Yotel’s digital and IT director, told Digiday ahead of his talk at Forrester’s Digital Transformation Forum. “The concept of millennials, as we say in the office, is so last year.”

Get the full story at Digiday

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/millennials_are_so_last_year_how_yotel_is_marketing_capsule_hotels

Orbitz going places under new GM

June 13, 2016

Nair wasted little time in shaking things up, laying off 40 percent of the Orbitz staff in November.

Since then, Orbitz has migrated to Expedia's online platform and added 130,000 hotels. Orbitz Rewards, a loyalty program launched in 2013 to boost hotel bookings, remains in place.

Despite being downsized and swallowed up by Expedia, the 15-year-old company remains committed to Chicago and its burgeoning tech scene, said Nair, 46, vice president and general manager of Orbitz and its sister site, CheapTickets.com.

Get the full story at the Chicago Tribune

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/orbitz_going_places_under_new_gm

Priceline Group: We are a platform for experience

June 13, 2016

"We love competition, it's in the DNA of the group," said Maelle Gavet, executive vice president, global operations, The Priceline Group, in a fireside chat during the Shoptalk event held in mid-May in Las Vegas.

Gavet is responsible for driving global operational strategy and connections across The Priceline Group and its six major brands: Booking.com, priceline.com, KAYAK, agoda.com and OpenTable.

The company's decentralized structure creates the internal competition aspect, she explained, and it's working well.

Get the full story at Retail Customer Experience

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/priceline_group_we_are_a_platform_for_experience

Delta Vacations sees luxury, group bookings grow

June 13, 2016

This year, 80% of revenue is being sold into those high-end properties, compared to 68% last year. Another area of growth is group bookings where he said, TRAVELSAVERS and NEST agents had increased sales by 167%.

For the Atlanta-based carrier’s leisure arm, the good news comes as its parent is ringing up record results, paying out $1.5 billion in employee profit sharing in 2015, contributing to a happy, motivated workforce that is helping drive industry leading on-time performance, and a record 100 days so far this year where it has not cancelled a flight.

“We want to get your clients where they want to go with their luggage and their underwear,” Caldwell told the packed ballroom at the JW Marriott Resort & Spa. To provide more inventory for affluent travelers, Caldwell said over 60 new upscale and boutique hotels have been added this year.

Get the full story at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/delta_vacations_sees_luxury_group_bookings_grow

Clear sailing forecast for Europe’s business travel market

June 13, 2016

Those figures are among the key findings in the most recent GBTA BTI™ Outlook – Western Europe report, conducted by the GBTA Foundation, the education and research arm of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), and sponsored by Visa, Inc.

The GBTA BTI™ Outlook – Western Europe report looks at the five largest business travel markets in Europe: Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy and Spain that together make up 70 percent of Western Europe’s business travel market, and serve as a strong indicator for the European business travel market more broadly. Taken together, the business travel trends of these five countries demonstrate that Western Europe’s business travel confidence and demand is growing due to a number of positive factors that are projected to continue into next year.

“What’s most impressive about these results is that Europe has faced a seemingly endless array of challenges recently,” said Catherine McGavock, GBTA’s Regional Vice President – EMEA. “From the Greek debt crisis to the influx of Syrian refugees, terrorist attacks in several European capitals, and the pending U.K. referendum on possibly exiting the bloc, the business travel market has not only endured, but thrived – growing at a greater rate over the last year than many of the other large business travel markets across the globe.”

Get the full story at GBTA

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/clear_sailing_forecast_for_europes_business_travel_market

How to make multichannel marketing work

June 13, 2016

As consumers spend more time across a broader number of devices and channels, the case for multichannel marketing has never been clearer. But few companies are capable of integrating the required data sources, technologies and departments to make omnichannel marketing work, as explored in a new eMarketer report, “Making Multichannel Marketing Work Four Tactics Required for Omnichannel Success.”

Multichannel marketing can be defined simply as using multiple touchpoints to reach audiences. Given the general nature of the description, it is not uncommon to find it applied in vastly different ways. One marketer may describe the coordination of digital-only efforts as multichannel, while another might assume that merely maintaining a presence in multiple channels qualifies.

Get the full story at eMarketer

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_to_make_multichannel_marketing_work

Demand more from your hotel forecast

June 13, 2016

Recent Revenue Management related activity on industry social networks like Twitter reinforce the various ways we discuss demand as an industry.

From tweets on how to forecast demand to the latest hashtags — #revenuestrategyfordummies, the common thread of these posts is that Revenue Managers must estimate consumer demand across multiple distribution channels to inform their pricing and yield strategies. More and more the discussion revolves around the concept of “Unconstrained Demand” and how this concept could be the Holy Grail for hotel forecasting

In an industry perspective, part of the nSight ViewPOINT series, Founder Rich Maradik gives a practical vision of Unconstrained Demand and how it will be used by tomorrow’s hotel innovators.

Get the full story at nSight

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/demand_more_from_your_hotel_forecast

Record ROC registration

June 13, 2016

Already registered are revenue executives from the corporate offices of 129 different hotel brands, management companies and ownership groups. Register today to guarantee your seat at the table.

The agenda for HSMAI's ROC Americas 2016 will focus on The Many Faces of Revenue Management. To be successful in hotels today, a revenue management leader must master many roles: analyst, strategist, tactician, communicator, thought leader, team builder, data advocate, distribution specialist, digital marketer, and more.

ROC will deliver the insights and expertise you need to develop these skills and talents in yourself and your team while maintaining a focus on the core of the profession: Optimizing Revenue.

For more information and registration go to HSMAI

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/record_roc_registration

Ryanair to ‘disrupt’ industry with launch of Ryanair Rooms

June 10, 2016

The airline, which currently partners with booking.com for accommodation on its website, is calling for interested providers of all types of accommodation, including hostels, B&Bs, holiday villas and homestay options, to submit proposals.

It says the criteria is that the accommodation must be offered at the 'lowest possible prices' for Ryanair customers.

Earlier this year, the airline announced its intention to become a 'digital travel leader that happens to have an airline attached to it'.

Booking.com will no longer power the accommodation platform of the Ryanair website from the end of September this year.

Get the full story at Travelmole and Tnooz

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/ryanair_to_disrupt_industry_with_launch_of_ryanair_rooms

Uber lets you book cars up to 30 days in advance

June 10, 2016

Now, you can schedule your car from 30 minutes up to 30 days in advance — but only for uberX. Lyft, on the other hand, only lets you schedule rides up to 24 hours in advance. I personally don’t see when I would ever schedule a ride 30 days ahead of time, but, whatever. This is clearly not about me.

Uber will send you reminders, one 24 hours and another 30 minutes ahead of your scheduled ride. Once your driver is on their way, you’ll receive a notification as well as information about whether surge pricing will be applied to your trip.

Uber’s starting the scheduled rides roll-out in Seattle, “followed by other top business travel cities,” according to the company’s blog post. Riders with business profiles or people who have their profiles linked to their employer’s Uber for Business account get priority access for scheduled trips. Uber says scheduled rides has been a top-requested feature from business riders.

Get the full story at TechCrunch

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/uber_lets_you_book_cars_up_to_30_days_in_advance

How travelers expect technology to transform experiences

June 10, 2016

Key findings include:

Advances in Technology:

- Paper and people free in 10 years?: Results revealed that 61 percent of Americans believe printing out paper copies of travel documents will be obsolete in 10 years, while 50 percent said asking a stranger for directions would be a thing of the past.

- Seamless experience and artificial intelligence (AI): When considering a trip, 54 percent expressed a desire for a single integrated app encompassing planning, booking and ticketing across all modes of transportation, and 40 percent want a virtual assistant that automatically makes recommendations based on interest.

- Mixed reviews on "black-hole trips": As a testament to reliance on mobile, nearly 59 percent of respondents said that lack of access to cellular or internet connection would make them unwilling to visit a destination.

"We believe that people are looking for functional advances with technology in order to support their travel experiences, rather than redefining what travel actually is," said Pepijn Rijvers, CMO of Booking.com. "These survey figures validate our hypothesis, and are in line with our approach to using technology to enhance our customer experience."

Millennial Travel Trends:

- Virtual reality for the "pre-experience": Imagine your feet in the sand but from the couch. Almost half of millennials would use a virtual reality headset to preview a destination they are planning to travel to.

- Mobile as key to spontaneity: 89 percent of millennials indicated that mobile technology has made them more likely to book activities or excursions during a trip as opposed to in advance, compared to 72 percent of all respondents.

- Meals worth going cross-country for: Nearly a third (32 percent) of millennials indicated that they would travel more than a thousand miles for the best meal of their life.

Across its brands, The Priceline Group develops product enhancements aimed at solving some of the challenges expressed in this survey. Recently, Booking.com launched Booking Messages - a chat-inspired communication platform that enables customers and accommodation providers to effortlessly connect with each other from the moment a booking is made. In addition to being able to initiate any kind of conversation they'd like with the accommodation, all Booking.com customers around the world can now quickly and conveniently manage the most common stay-related requests in just a few taps. The Booking Messages interface features automatically pre-translated templates for certain predefined requests, including arranging check-in and check-out times, as well as questions about parking and bed preferences—all in real-time and with a familiar, chat-like interface. OpenTable also launched a Discover tab within their mobile app, which serves as a "concierge in your pocket." This feature allows anyone to feel like a local, instantly connecting users to new dining experiences, restaurants with immediate availability and top rated establishments from both locals and OpenTable members.

"As technology continues to progress, we've seen a dramatic shift in how and what our customers demand when it comes to experiencing the world," said Leslie Cafferty, Vice President, Global Communications for the Priceline Group. "This survey echoes these sentiments and indicates where the market is moving in terms of product and customer expectations."

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_travelers_expect_technology_to_transform_experiences

Consortia, agencies filling gap to train next generation

June 10, 2016

And while the number of traditional travel schools has dropped, consortia and host agencies have filled the gap, and both have recently seen growth in their training programs.

The Travel Institute offers a Travel Introductory Program (TripKit) that is used by many trainers. COO Diane Petras said sales have been on an upswing for the past seven years. In fact, in 2015 TripKit sales grew 72% over 2014, she said.

That demand has remained high. In the first quarter of 2016, TripKit sales were greater than in Q1 2015, Petras said, and she predicted sales will likely continue to grow.

Get the full story at Travel Weekly

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/consortia_agencies_filling_gap_to_train_next_generation

The boomers will dominate travel for 20 years

June 10, 2016

Millennials are getting more and more attention in the media, and are no doubt a rising force in the travel industry. But Brent Green, an expert on marketing to the baby boom generation and author of Generation Reinvention and Marketing to

“For the next 20 years,” said Green, “baby boomers are without question the financial force behind leisure travel.”

What Green calls the “sweetest of the sweet spot” in that market is the market segment he identifies as “leading edge baby boomers,” those born between 1946 and 1955. In 2016 they are between 61 and 70 years of age.

Get the full story at Travel Pulse

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_boomers_will_dominate_travel_for_20_years

Building the just-in-time marketing organization

June 10, 2016

Accenture defines “just-in-time" marketing as creating only the marketing content that’s needed, when it’s needed -- and tailoring that content to the needs of interested consumers exactly when they’re in the buying mood.

In contrast, mass marketing strategies create tons of content aimed at reaching the broadest possible audience.

The findings indicate that marketing organizations need to streamline, get more agile and nimble. That means they need to turn findings into insights quickly and identify who is accountable for each decision.

Get the full story at MediaPost and Accenture

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/building_the_just_in_time_marketing_roganization

How social media can increase hotel’s direct bookings

June 10, 2016

Estimates show the *number of worldwide users on social networks by 2018 to be a whooping 2.5 Billion which is nearly 90% of all people online. In 2015, over 70 percent of the US population had social network profiles. According to a study made last year by the social times 28% of time spent online is spent on social media. And *nearly half of all online shoppers rely on social media when making a purchase online!

In hospitality alone there are over 148.3 million bookings made on the internet each year. The amount of business on the internet which is generated via social media is so overwhelming hotels have no choice but to focus on these channels. And the hotels who turn a blind eye to social media as a real avenue of generating direct business will be severely impacted and lose countless bookings to other properties who do cultivate their social networking channels.

Get the full story at RateTiger

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/how_social_media_can_increase_hotels_direct_bookings

The top 25 platforms hotels and resorts use to manage their social marketing

June 10, 2016

Compared to other sites where the vast majority of content is shared natively, nearly half of all tweets posted by hotels and resorts come from a 3rd party tool. So for this analysis we used Twitter’s “source” identifier from over 225,000 tweets posted by 4,900 hotels and resorts during the last year. We excluded cross-sharing between networks (i.e., where the source was “Facebook”, “Instagram”, etc.) and looked only at the tools brands use outside of these networks.

Here are the top 25 with the total number of brands from our sample that are using that specific platform followed by the percentage of the total that represents in parenthesis.

Get the full story at Ryan Solutions

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/the_top_25_platforms_hotels_and_resorts_use_to_manage_their_social_marketin

Expedia’s first bot is for booking hotels

June 09, 2016

What’s more, the bot is extremely intuitive. As in easy-to-use. For the tech savvy, this may seem like a big “duh,” but simplicity matters given that bots are still in their infancy and Expedia’s customer base spans all walks of life: the company owns more than 200 travel booking sites from Orbitz to HomeAway to Trivago to Hotels.com.

While the bot took only about 5 weeks to develop, Expedia got a head start in making it so smart. “Our work with natural language processing and machine learning – the tools that helped get us here – have been going on for years,” said Tarran Street, senior public relations manager. “For us it’s all about experimentation to better understand travelers’ needs. The rise of mobile means people are starting to move away from the mouse and traditional keyboard, we want to be sure our products are available wherever travelers are searching.”

Get the full story at VentureBeat and Expedia

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/expedias_first_bot_is_for_booking_hotels

Airbnb allows employees to book business travel for co-workers

June 09, 2016

This new tool adds a whole new dimension to the way companies are able to book listings for all their business travel needs.

Before today, users were unable to designate other travelers in the checkout flow. Starting today, when employees use Airbnb for Business, co-workers can easily book for someone else. Then, both the employee who is managing travel and the employee who is taking the trip can see the trip details, make changes to the reservation and message the Airbnb host with questions about the listing or neighborhood.

“More and more business travelers are choosing to stay with Airbnb while they are on the road, so they get the chance to not just visit, but live in a city, even if it’s for one night,” said Lex Bayer, Head of Global Payments and Business Development at Airbnb. “Our hosts offer more than just generic hospitality, they help travelers live in the heart of local neighborhoods. We are excited that this product update will introduce a whole new segment of business travelers to this experience.”

To date, 50,000 companies have used Airbnb for Business to make a booking and 10 percent of all travel that happens on Airbnb is business travel. To help travelers feel at home when they are on the road, business travelers can choose from thousands of Business Travel Ready listings. With all the essential amenities and services a business traveler needs like free WiFi, laptop-friendly workspaces and 24 hour check-in, Business Travel Ready listings have everything a traveler needs to be successful on the road.

Related Link: Airbnb for Business

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/airbnb_allows_employees_to_book_business_travel_for_co_workers

Why Hotwire loves it when Airbnb puts pressure on hotels

June 09, 2016

So says Hotwire president Henrik Kjellberg, who was brought in by Expedia from then-sister company eLong three years ago to turn around a struggling Hotwire. When hotels aren’t selling out even during a major city event because companies such as Airbnb or VRBO are attracting guests, that means hotels will give Hotwire more availabilities to fill rooms at the discounted prices that consumers will be ready to book.

“Alternative accommodation for us is certainly something that makes the Hotwire proposition” more valuable, Kjellberg says.

In addition to its “opaque” product, Hotwire offers published rates for hotels and cars. Kjellberg says Hotwire may consider integrating alternative accommodations into its published-rate lodging offerings but definitely wouldn’t display vacation rentals or apartments within the opaque product.

Get the full story at Skift

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/why_hotwire_loves_it_when_airbnb_puts_pressure_on_hotels

Europe’s popularity strong with U.S. travelers

June 09, 2016

All three cities moved up the AAA list this year versus last. Rome ranked at the top of AAA’s list, rising three spots from summer 2015 while London moved from third most popular to second. Both European cities displaced two Caribbean destinations, Cancun (1) and Punta Cana (2).

Paris proved its timeless popularity as a tourism destination. The city, which experienced two terrorist events, still moved up from seventh to fifth.

Vancouver made the greatest jump this year, rising from eighth to fourth. Calgary and Amsterdam replaced Nassau, the Bahamas, and Edinburgh, Scotland.

Get the full story at Travel Market Report

Read also "Americans plan Summer travel well in advance" at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/europes_popularity_strong_with_u.s._travelers

Hotels and resorts adapt as face of luxury continues to change

June 09, 2016

Kevin Montano, senior vice president of global development for Edition Hotels, a joint venture between Marriott and hotelier Ian Schrager, said every Edition has a cultural director whose job is to create programming and events that generate buzz. “If a guest does not see locals in the lobby, they will leave.”

Richard Baker, executive vice president-operations director-Asia for Mandarin Oriental, said that while the Mandarin Oriental in Bangkok (the original Oriental Hotel, which is 150 years old) “will always have butlers, we are also spending $150 million on modernizing the hotel through technology so we can customize experiences, and updating our offerings in spa, wellness, and f&b. We may not have white tablecloths but we will have Michelin-starred chefs.”

Technology will be key to the new luxury. James Erlacher, vice president of development for Accor Hotels, said the company is spending $200 million on a new mobile platform to enable better communication with guests. And Yvonne Choi, chief development officer for the Cachet Hotel Group, a new Asia-based company, said the hotel industry is way behind on technology, and a new platform called Cachet World will allow travelers to totally control their trips with algorithms that predict behavior.

Get the full story at Travel Market Report

Read also "Hotels and resorts adapt as luxury evolves" at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/hotels_and_resorts_adapt_as_face_of_luxury_continues_to_change

What trends are marketers trying this year?

June 09, 2016

The survey from Pan Communications also revealed that 49% of US marketers are interested in trying persona-based marketing, and 41% of respondents said they’re interested in video and live streaming.

Though interest in virtual reality (VR) has been gaining momentum this year, only 11% of US marketers surveyed said that it’s a trend they’re interested in trying.

It’s not surprising that personalized marketing is top-of-mind for many marketers. Personalization can drive engagement and conversions.

Get the full story at eMarketer

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/what_trends_are_marketers_trying_this_year

Three things hotel marketers can learn from Uber

June 09, 2016

Over the last 10 years, industry disruptors have rocked the business world in ways we’ve never seen before, and leading the charge is disruption’s poster child, Uber.

Not only has it streamlined getting anywhere in the world’s major cities, Uber‘s visionary business model is a goldmine of lessons for hotel marketers. Their model nourishes their own growth, with their incredible way of combining a smooth payment system, customer-focused service delivery and smart and nimble use of mobile technology. This has left taxi companies reeling from a drastic loss in market share, customer loyalty and brand security with every passing day.

Get the full story at Tambourine

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/three_things_hotel_marketers_can_learn_from_uber

Leonardo powers hotel media display on WeeklyHotels.com

June 09, 2016

WeeklyHotels.com launched in 2013 as a hotel booking website for travelers seeking hotels that offer weekly rates and/or kitchenettes in their rooms. Through many years of hotel ownership, the founders knew that there was an opportunity to match travelers with hotels that meet their longer stay needs. They also knew that enabling these travelers to explore the listed hotels through large, high-resolution hotel media would help drive better website performance and more bookings on WeeklyHotels.com.

When searching for a solution to display multi-media for its weekly hotels and hotels with kitchenettes, WeeklyHotels.com discovered Leonardo’s MediaConnect Complete solution, which provides travel suppliers a turnkey solution for access to and display of hotel visual content.

Get the full story at Leonardo

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/leonardo_powers_hotel_media_display_on_weeklyhotels.com

Here’s how Airbnb disrupted the hospitality industry

June 08, 2016

So said Chip Conley, head of global hospitality and strategy at Airbnb, who talked about the company's role in the history of the hospitality industry at the C2 conference in Montreal on Wednesday.

Conley, who has plenty of hotel experience under his belt as the founder of the Joie de Vivre, a boutique hotel chain, was intrigued by Airbnb's business plan when he was approached to join the company three years ago. "In 2013, I didn't know what the sharing economy was. But I thought it was interesting that they were trying to democratize hotels, and they were trying to improve hospitality for people who were traveling, but they were doing it without their own employees."

He said that the hospitality industry's transformation followed three rules of innovation: innovation doesn't happen without foreshadowing; innovators address a human need that isn't being met, and over time, the establishment embraces innovation that was once disruptive.

Get the full story at AdWeek

Read also "Airbnb begins testing program to give guests guided one-of-a-kind experiences"

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/heres_how_airbnb_disrupted_the_hospitality_industry

US: Business travel shows signs of life after yearlong slump

June 08, 2016

The association’s monthly economic indicator predicts moderate travel expansion into late 2016, with international inbound growth rivaling that of domestic travel overall. For much of 2016 thus far, the strong U.S. dollar has proven a drag on the demand for international travel to the U.S., and April’s report predicts a welcome rebound.

The April Current Travel Index (CTI) rose to 52.2, signaling the 76th straight month of growth for the travel industry (numbers above 50 indicate growth, and scores below 50 show contraction).

In the full Travel Trends Index report, the 3- and 6-month LTI readings of 51.3 and 51.1, respectively, indicate that U.S. travel overall is expected to grow at a rate of around two percent through October 2016.

Get the full story at USTA

Read also "Travel bookings remain modest, USTA says" at Travel Market Report

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/us_business_travel_shows_signs_of_life_after_yearlong_slump

CEOs of five leading hotel brands on their hopes and fears in 2016

June 08, 2016

Christopher Nassetta, CEO of Hilton Worldwide, repeatedly attempted to put the overall state of the hotel business in a rosy perspective to provide greater context around some of the more troubling trends impacting travel in 2016.

“Forget the next quarter or two,” he said. “The next five, 10, 15 years, frankly, I think the rest of our lives for everybody in this room, all things being equal, are going to be fantastic in terms of what’s going to happen in travel and tourism, what’s going to happen in the hotel business, and what’s going to happen in terms of our growth.”

Equally important, they said, the growth of the global middle class, Millennial preferences for experiences over things, and Boomers’ pent-up demand for travel are spurring the best possible scenario for hotel development, well, of all time.

Get the full story at Skift

Read also "Marriott CEO interview: Speaking up on social issues and building a huge brand" at Skift

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/ceos_of_five_leading_hotel_brands_on_their_hopes_and_fears_in_2016

Northstar Travel Group acquired by Wasserstein Partners

June 08, 2016

Northstar is the leading provider of business-to-business information, content, events, data, research, custom content and software dedicated to the global travel and meetings industries. In addition to Travel Weekly, Northstar owns, among other brands, TravelAge West, Phocuswright, Travel42, Star Service Online, Business Travel News and several titles serving the meetings industry. Among its database businesses are Travel Weekly’s Hotel & Travel Index and Official Cruise Guide.

The company extended its reach globally two years ago with the acquisition of Travel Weekly China, Travel Weekly Asia and Singapore-based travel technology event producer Web in Travel. Last year, Northstar brands produced more than 50 face-to-face events in 13 countries.

Additionally, Northstar is the majority shareholder in Inntopia, the leading SaaS e-commerce software provider serving the mountain destination, activities and specialty destination travel markets.

Get the full story at Travel Weekly

Article location: http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/northstar_travel_group_acquired_by_wasserstein_partners


Copyright © 2011 HOTELMARKETING.COM All Rights Reserved.