Continuously shifting guest expectations and lifestyle trends forces hospitality brands to be nearly instantaneous in adjusting their brand’s nuanced meaning to remain relevant. And maintaining brand integrity is more challenging than ever since marketers must consider a diverse arena of clientele: business or leisure; domestic or international; luxury or budget conscious.

To keep brand erosion at bay, hospitality professionals regularly brainstorm new way of “reaching out” and touching consumers. Either anticipatory or reactionary, branding strategies must respond to trends in the marketplace, domestically or internationally.

And the consumer’s attention is fracturing technology and the internet impacts consumer behavior. Peter Yesawich Chairman and CEO of Yesawich, Pepperdine, Brown & Russell and leisure travel expert remarked on the changing role of branding in the hotel industry at a recent conference discussing how NJ will market itself in the future. Yesawich said the use of the Internet to book flights and accommodations has changed the way Americans look at vacations, vaulting cheap fares and rates ahead of exotic locales or posh amenities as the status symbols for American travelers.

"Brand loyalty is a very fragile idea in a cost-transparent world," said Yesawich. "The Jersey Shore needs to stand for something consumers find both attractive and motivational."

Understanding this shifting paradigm, leading hotel brands are concentrating on the latest trend: lifestyle hotels. These properties are designed to connect with guests on an emotional level, melding the way their customers live with an aspirational aesthetic. Piggybacked on established brands, this formula is winning attention.

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