Revenue Management
Paul van Meerendonk
  • Revenue Management
  • Big Data for Big Pay-Off
  • Big data has been a starting player on the strategic revenue roster for years. In fact, years before big data exploded into something like a phenomenon, hotels were increasingly incorporating industry data into their revenue technologies and strategies. The opportunities afforded through the effective use of big data have grown to such an extent that today’s flourishing hotels must increasingly leverage larger amounts of available data to seize their most lucrative revenue opportunities. Read on...

Lily Mockerman
  • Revenue Management
  • Analytics, the 'Holy Grail' of Revenue Management
  • Analytics continue to be one of the most-discussed topics in the Revenue Management industry and as the backbone of any solid revenue management discipline, this makes sense. With that said, how do we really use analytics, and why is this measurement so important to building a solid revenue management foundation? Perhaps the most obvious answer is that humans – the drivers of revenue management – measure experiences through perception. This may not be intentional, but we are emotional and irrational creatures by nature. Analytics help us take an unbiased approach to our business in more rational and data-driven ways. Simply put, analytics give us the foundation needed to arm hoteliers with the ability to price efficiently and effectively without experiential bias. Read on...

David Lund
  • Revenue Management
  • Do Your Hotel Financial Statements Pass the Test?
  • Do your hotel financial statements give you the information you need to effectively run your business? Do they have an effective summary statement with departmental profits, flow thru analysis, proper room segment statistics, labor productivity, do you have payroll segmented by management and hourly classifications, do you have separate supplemental payroll and benefits, do you track arrivals and departures? Most statements I see do not have most of these critical elements. They’re lacking these incredibly effective elements that can easily be added. How would these elements add insight and value to your business? Let’s explore this Read on...

David Lund
  • Revenue Management
  • Creating Financial Leadership in Your Hotel
  • Hotel forecast magic. The how to vs. the want to. Have you ever wondered why it’s so hard to get the non-financial manages in your hotel to do their forecasts? It’s like pulling teeth, it’s so hard to get the leaders in your hotel to willingly come to the plate. What if you’re asking for their forecasts in the wrong way? Here is what I learned and I want to call myself out on this because it took me 20 years to figure it out. Maybe it will work for you too and you won’t have to waste 20 years. Read on...

Jeff Navach
  • Revenue Management
  • Eliminating Acquisition Costs to Get Heads in Beds
  • What if I told you there was an easy and effective way to bypass the OTAs, reduce fees, and capture audiences you aren’t currently accessing? And I’m not talking about a new idea or outrageous untested concept. I’m simply talking about a change in the way you think about digital marketing. It’s a process that the OTAs have deployed for years that hotel marketers can do every bit as effectively as the OTAs. Hotels continue to confront a familiar problem: How to attract direct bookings and reduce the impact of OTA fees. We all know how profitable it is when bookings come straight through the hotel, but there simply isn’t enough reach to drive the same demand as the OTAs. Read on...

David Hogan
  • Revenue Management
  • Understanding the EMV Fraud Liability Shift
  • Even though it’s been almost 18 months since the U.S. migrated to EMV smart-chip based payment technology, many businesses – for various reasons – are still hesitant to get on board. Many hotel property management system products don’t support EMV acceptance, even though almost 80 percent of credit cards are now issued with smart chips. In fact, credit card issuers prioritized which cards were issued with chips first, which included high-limit international or travel cards – the types of cards being used often in hotels. Without the ability to accept EMV transactions, business owners – including hoteliers like you – are seeing liability shift chargebacks for which there is no defense. Read on...

David Chitlik
  • Revenue Management
  • Tax Assessments Based on Value in Use, or Value in Exchange
  • Regardless of property type, tax assessment valuation would appear simple enough. A generally accepted definition of market value is: The probable price, as of a specified date, in cash, or in terms equivalent to cash, or in other precisely revealed terms, for which the specified property rights should sell after reasonable exposure in a competitive market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, with the buyer and seller each acting prudently, knowledgeably, and for self-interest, and assuming that neither is under undue duress. Read on...

Paul van Meerendonk
  • Revenue Management
  • Driving Maximum Profit Through More Direct Bookings
  • Driving Maximum Profit through More Direct Booking: In today’s ultra-competitive hotel environment, every dollar counts. Any competitive edge that translates into a stronger bottom line is sought out, and every piece of hotel business is evaluated to determine its true worth. With rising costs associated with acquiring new guests through third-party platforms, hotels are rightly considering their most effective booking channels and looking to maximize business from owned assets like their own website. Read on...

Bob Mattler
  • Revenue Management
  • Improve Profits With Renovation, Redevelopment and New Construction
  • There is a new innovative way to pay for hospitality construction projects: Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing. PACE, adopted as enabling legislation in 32 states and with active programs in about half of them, is gaining momentum as a flexible, available and creative tool in which to finance almost any technology that saves energy and/ or water. PACE can take the place of expensive loans or additional owner equity to finance construction projects that can be repaid long term from those very same energy and water savings. This article will explain Property Assessed Clean Energy, who pays for PACE, some common building systems ripe for PACE financing, who is using PACE and why. We’ll take a closer look through some case studies how hospitality developers and owners are already taking advantage of this new economic development tool. Read on...

Bernard Ellis
  • Revenue Management
  • Achieving Total Revenue Management with Your Existing RMS
  • Technology is often blamed for raising the biggest barrier to embracing a “total revenue management” approach. But chances are that you have systems in place that are already up to the task, if only you would set them up to succeed. You may need to make PMS configuration changes and refine certain business practices, but it will be more than worth it. It seems like every time RevPAR growth slows down, as it is now in the US, hoteliers instinctively turn first to investigate their revenue management systems, which surely must have blown a fuse or broken a fan belt or something. Read on...

Paul van Meerendonk
Trevor Stuart-Hill
  • Revenue Management
  • Should We be Concerned About ADR?
  • Reliance on growing ADR to drive RevPAR when occupancy levels plateau isn’t as easy as it sounds. Reactionary pricing moves, whether they be automated or human in origin will undoubtedly result in subpar performance. This article serves as an early warning that now is the time to take action to ensure that you don’t fall victim to your dumbest competitor. Projections for 2017 and beyond by STR, CBRE and PKF all call for anemic occupancy growth at best, notwithstanding record occupancy levels for the U.S. hospitality industry. With Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) growth projections at inflationary levels (2.5 – 3.5 percent, or so), it is clear that expectations call for Average Daily Rate (ADR) growth to continue, but will it? Read on...

Tammy Farley
  • Revenue Management
  • Three Game-Changing Hospitality Trends for 2017
  • There is an old adage that says, “The only constant is change.” Although attributed to Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher who lived around 500 B.C., apparently that statement is as true now as it has ever been – perhaps even more so. 2016 has proven to be a year of tumultuous change in the hospitality industry, from the dizzying pace of technological advancements and fluctuating global economies to the introduction and adoption of entire new segments of the business. With rapidly advancing technologies in just about every sector of the industry, hospitality has experienced an exponential transformation over the past several years, dramatically changing the face of one of the world’s oldest occupations. Read on...

Ravneet Bhandari
  • Revenue Management
  • Dynamic Vs. Static Segmentation: Who are Your Real Competitors?
  • Revenue managers spend considerable time observing and reviewing their competitive set. After all, they’ve had historical success looking at the hotels with similar pricing and amenities. It’s been the stalwart approach to decoding the price forecasting puzzle. As an industry, we’ve commonly accepted this is the right way to do things. But be warned, this approach is like looking at a spectacular mountain. Every angle around the mountain looks different to the observer, with each view revealing bite sized pieces of the overall picture. The reader starts with a full-page image, but when seen from another angle, an entirely different picture is revealed. Revenue managers are so busy looking at their competition through a ‘partial’ image, they cannot see the full picture. Read on...

David Chitlik
  • Revenue Management
  • Can Any Hotel Sale Really be Used as a 'Comparable'?
  • A hotel is not the same as a house or a warehouse or an apartment or office building, and assessors often don’t understand why. The hospitality sector is frequently the most challenging part of a jurisdiction’s property tax base. The only way to derive a hotel’s real property value from a purchase price is for an assessor to spend time and energy understanding the adjustments needed to accurately determine what part of that purchase price relates to real property and whether or not it can be used as a sales comparable for other hotels in that jurisdiction. Read on...

AUGUST: Food & Beverage: Multiplicity and Diversity are Key

Larry Steinberg

The foodservice industry is one of the oldest and most important. Consumers from all demographics rely on it virtually every day for sustenance. In fact, in the U.S. alone, it’s a nearly $800 billion industry that’s extremely competitive, with hundreds of new establishments popping up every year, and much of this new business is the result of increased consumer demand. Consumers want more options. For every practiced chef, there is a collective of guests eager to spend their hard-earned dollars on something exotic and different. They want to experience a bit of culture by way of their next meal, and they want to find it using the latest technology. Read on...

Frank Sanchez

About two years ago, I started my career at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile. I came from San Diego, California, the apparent capital of farmer’s markets. When I moved to Chicago in late-October, the number of farmer’s markets had already begun to taper off and all that was left of the hotel’s rooftop garden was the sad remnants of a summer full of bounty. However, I was in for a pleasant surprise. The Chicago Marriott Downtown operates a year-round experience to create food from scratch that gives customers fresh and nutritional options. I was thrilled to join a team that can tell a customer that the very greens on their plate were grown just floors above them. Read on...

Thomas  McKeown

To serve today’s eclectic, socially engaged and sophisticated guests, hotels and chefs need to get creative, change their thinking and push back some walls – sometimes literally. The fun thing about meetings hotels is that they are a different place just about every week. One week we’re hosting a bridge tournament, the next a corporate sales team, or a dentists’ conference, or sci-fi fans in costumes, or cheerleaders jumping for joy. You name the group, and our hotel has probably welcomed them. Read on...

Elizabeth  Blau

Over the past several years, many of us have watched with excitement and interest as the fast-casual restaurant segment has continued to boom. More and more, talented chefs with fine dining pedigrees are bringing their skills, creativity, and experience to concepts built around speed, approachability, and volume. Right now, the ability to offer a gourmet experience at all price points is as compelling to restaurateurs and diners alike. Read on...

Coming Up In The September Online Hotel Business Review




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Feature Focus
Hotel Group Meetings: Blue Skies Ahead
After a decade of sacrifice and struggle, it seems that hotels and meeting planners have every reason to be optimistic about the group meeting business going forward. By every industry benchmark and measure, 2017 is shaping up to be a record year, which means more meetings in more locations for more attendees. And though no one in the industry is complaining about this rosy outlook, the strong demand is increasing competition among meeting planners across the board – for the most desirable locations, for the best hotels, for the most creative experiences, for the most talented chefs, and for the best technology available. Because of this robust demand, hotels are in the driver’s seat and they are flexing their collective muscles. Even though over 100,000 new rooms were added last year, hotel rates are expected to rise by a minimum of 4.0%, and they are also charging fees on amenities that were often gratis in the past. In addition, hotels are offering shorter lead times on booking commitments, forcing planners to sign contracts earlier than in past years. Planners are having to work more quickly and to commit farther in advance to secure key properties. Planners are also having to meet increased attendee expectations. They no longer are content with a trade show and a few dinners; they want an experience. Planners need to find ways to create a meaningful experience to ensure that attendees walk away with an impactful memory. This kind of experiential learning can generate a deeper emotional connection, which can ultimately result in increased brand recognition, client retention, and incremental sales. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group business and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.