The hotel industry outlook for the top 25 North American Markets is showing an increase of 2.3% in committed occupancy for June 2013 - May 2014, based on group commitments and individual reservations on the books as of May 26, 2013 compared to the same time last year. The group segment is up 1.6% in room nights committed (contracted). New group business added over the last month (pace) has been stronger than recent months, up 6.6% over the comparable period last year. Transient room nights booked is up 4.1% compared to the same time last year. Average daily rate (ADR) is growing slightly more than occupancy, up 3.4% based on reservations currently on the books for 2013. Two channels in particular stand out. First, loyalty program members account for nearly 80% of all room nights booked through a hotel's website (Brand.com). This accentuates the value of this customer segment, given a loyalty guest's propensity to book through the hotel's lowest cost distribution channel. Second, 85% of all room nights booked through a third-party online travel agency (OTA) come from guests not affiliated to the hotel's loyalty program. The OTA channel is an important source of demand, driving 13% of transient room nights year to date. Each of these guests represents an opportunity to add new loyalty program members. The importance of growing and maintaining an effective loyalty program is self-evident. But how do you measure your success? Are you keeping up with your competition in adding loyalty members? Are you driving the right level of demand through the right booking channels from that membership? These are perhaps more challenging questions that require a deeper look into your own performance data as well as available market data. Get the full story at Hospitality.Net