Revenue Management
Jim Sprigg
  • Revenue Management
  • Using Econometrics to Accurately Measure Share-of-Wallet and Improve Customer Strategy
  • The rise of big data in an increasingly complex digital economy has economists and marketers constantly expanding what we want to know about individuals so that we can better analyze and target them with messages and offers. Yet, despite a rapid expansion in the types of customer data being offered by data vendors, the ability to know a customer’s share-of-wallet remains just as desirable, and elusive, today as ever. Amidst the promises of big data, one company in the travel industry has found that traditional econometrics and store-level data is the most valuable for deriving share-of-wallet to inform customer strategy and investments. Read on...

Paul van Meerendonk
  • Revenue Management
  • The Evolution of Revenue Management and Big Data
  • The hotel sector has never been a stranger to the winds of change. What was once considered leading-edge customer service practices, like offering free internet to guests or express checkout options, are now basic expectations that travelers view as standard services. Just as the hotel industry has evolved, so have the approaches that hotels have taken to attract the right guests at the right prices. The practice of revenue management, and the systems used to make accurate pricing decisions, have become even more precise and sophisticated in recent years. Most recently, these systems have begun incorporating data on competitor pricing activity and the pricing of services outside of guest rooms, like function spaces. Undoubtedly, the biggest change in revenue management today is the influx of large volumes of guest data and its impacts on future pricing decisions and hotel promotion. Read on...

Stephen Darling
  • Revenue Management
  • Unorthodox Repurposing of Hotel Spaces to Create New Profit Centers
  • A hotel property in Kamloops, British Columbia decided to close a 5,000 square foot street-facing corner restaurant that was losing $500k per year. After four years of active marketing, they still could not find a tenant. Attempting to convert the eatery into a wellness space also didn’t work. Following an unorthodox approach, the hotel transformed the space into a mediation and arbitration center called Centrepoint. This helped create symbiotic revenue as parties seeking Centrepoint’s services would likely stay at the adjacent property in conjunction with freeing up hotel meeting space for larger events. Read on...

Mark  Heymann
  • Revenue Management
  • Top Line vs. Bottom Line and the Effect on Market Share
  • A bottom-line focus requires a hotel’s operating team to have a skill set comparable to that of its revenue managers. But while many revenue managers rely on yield management systems to simplify complex calculations and tasks, few operators take similar advantage of advanced labor management technology that can help optimize both labor costs and service performance. Today’s sophisticated LMS solutions are the key to driving bottom-line results while preserving market share. Read on...

S. Lakshmi Narasimhan
  • Revenue Management
  • Promotion Dollars and ROI
  • So, at the end of the day, the whole matter of promoting your product is now squarely in the hands of the social media platforms that are relevant to your business and a big part of that is delivered by the social proof phenomenon. The power shift is not just monumental, it is completely out of the hands of the business as far as directing promotion strategies are concerned. Businesses now are forced to focus on the products and services they offer and the value perception they bring to the customer which hopefully will translate to better revenues and therefore a healthy return on investment on promotions that are carried out through social media communication engines. The boot is now on the other foot. Read on...

Roberta Braum
  • Revenue Management
  • A Guide to Protecting Guest Data with EMV and PCI-Validated P2PE
  • Hotel guest satisfaction has hit a record high, according to the J.D. Power 2015 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study. But we can never become too comfortable. Continuing to grow satisfaction levels will give your property a distinct advantage over others. And, while embracing the latest technology trends offers new opportunities to improve guest satisfaction, it also presents a few challenges. Read on...

Mark  Heymann
  • Revenue Management
  • Value Engineering Labor: Cost Management in a Growing Economy
  • Controlling labor costs is crucial to driving profits, and recent studies suggest that hotel managers, having learned hard lessons in the 2008 economic crisis, are paying attention. But as rates and occupancy rebound, salaries and payroll-related expenses likewise are rising, indicating a need for vigilance. Value-engineering labor can help hotels reduce labor costs without compromising the market position they seek to achieve. Read on...

Mmatsatsi Ramawela
  • Revenue Management
  • Growth in Africa: A Look at the 2015 Hospitality Investment Conference Africa
  • Emerging markets, though exciting and ground breaking, can be tough to manage singularly. Partnerships are needed; not in the sense that individualism is not enough, but in the hopes of realizing maximum operational potential. In the hospitality industry, where there is such a broad range of expertise, partnerships are necessary not only to survive, but also thrive. Combining these two, emerging markets and the hospitality industry, and we find ourselves turning to the African stage. An area of the world where vast takes on so many meanings -- opportunity, size, culture. But what also comes with such a gift is the cost of knowing that individuality without partnerships will make success impossible, especially in our industry. Read on...

Kelly  McGuire
  • Revenue Management
  • A Revenue Manager's Guide to Surviving the Awkward Teenage Years
  • Revenue management is relatively new to the hotel industry. Hotels only really started to adopt revenue management processes and systems broadly in the late 90s and early 2000s. We’ve managed to achieve success and gain visibility over the last couple of decades, but we are a relatively young discipline in hospitality. In fact, it could be said that revenue management is still in its teenage years, and, in my opinion, we are definitely acting like it. Read on...

Kelly  McGuire
  • Revenue Management
  • Profile of the New Revenue Manager
  • Revenue management is taking on a more strategic role with growing responsibilities and new opportunities to expand the influence of the discipline. One thing remains constant: the revenue manager is the key to a successful revenue management program. This role requires an analytically minded leader, who can successfully work across the organization to drive results. Revenue management has traditionally been a detail-oriented, analytical discipline obsessed with data and consumed with spreadsheets. The more analytical, the better. As the discipline has matured, technology has become more sophisticated and the role has expanded, the requirements of the job are evolving. Read on...

David Hogan
  • Revenue Management
  • Captivating the Digital Generation
  • When compared to older generations, millennials may not be the most well-traveled group, but they are on their way to becoming top travel consumers. According to a Harris Poll survey, millennials, those born from the early 1980s to the early 2000s, already plan to spend about $226 billion on travel this year. For this reason, it is important hotels and restaurants truly understand the consumer power of millennials, and the importance of capturing and keeping their business. Read on...

S. Lakshmi Narasimhan
  • Revenue Management
  • Social Proof – The New Referral Engine
  • The market landscape has truly undergone a major metamorphosis in the past decade. The way businesses woo customers has consequently also changed dramatically. Gone are the days when businesses craved for referrals through direct communication. The new referral engine is social proof - the positive influence that is created when someone comes across something that many others are doing. In a way, it is using experiences of others to choose a product. Read on...

Tammy Farley
  • Revenue Management
  • The Evolution from Revenue Management to Total Guest Revenue
  • As the art and science of revenue management evolve, the focus sharpens on finding custom solutions rather than selling products to hotels, resorts and gaming establishments. As sophistication grows, the target broadens to maximization of total guest revenue. This article provides a roadmap – and cites best practices -- for optimizing revenue, regardless the type, size, or makeup of a property’s business. Read on...

Amy Bair
  • Revenue Management
  • Which Top Line Revenues Result in the Most Bottom Line Profits?
  • Thanks to the Age of Technology, Revenue Management has risen to the top of the Agenda for virtually every hotel Executive Committee meeting. The question to be answered historically has been “How do we maximize our revenue stream?” But that question has been expanded to “How do we maximize our revenue stream and ensure that dollars coming in on the top line survive the journey to the bottom line?” The simple answer is focus on optimizing room rates. The numbers make the case. Read on...

Elizabeth  Churchill
  • Revenue Management
  • Five Steps Toward Revenue Integration
  • After beginning a process of integration more than a year ago, Aqua Hospitality and Aston Hotels & Resorts rebranded this year as Aqua-Aston Hospitality. In addition to the new name, the group – which manages more than 50 properties across Hawaii and the U.S. mainland – also unveiled a new look, and further distinguished what its five hotel brands offer travel partners and consumers. The result: one of Hawaii’s leading hotel management groups is in a stronger position to achieve sustainable growth through strategic revenue management. Read on...

FEBRUARY: Social Media: Interacting with the Hotel Customer

Nisha Thakkar

While social media has become a mainstream marketing channel, there are many variables that hoteliers are not taking advantage of to increase their revenue. Unlike other mainstream marketing avenues, social media is not static, as platforms continuously find ways to increase engagement with both users and advertisers. As social platforms have realized their massive marketing opportunities within their user base, they have increasingly capitalized on their clearly defined users by providing advertisers access to them. Today, the popularity of social channels has created a “pay-to-play” model that leaves many business owners and managers perplexed as to which channels to focus on, and the right budget to allocate in order to maximize return on investment (ROI). Read on...

Cass Bailey

These days, a lot goes into choosing the perfect hotel. Hotel choice no longer depends solely on the location, price, and amenities; it depends on experience. Customers have become more interested in experiential features instead of whether or not the hotel has a five-star review. As the phrase goes, many “do it for the gram.” When looking to book their stay, the Instagram generation is interested in things that are eye-catching and worthy of sharing with their followers. Just searching the hashtag “wanderlust” reveals millions of images of different travel experiences from around the world. Read on...

Tim Sullivan

As hoteliers’ key audiences spend less time on the Web and more time on their smartphones’ social apps, it is crucial for hotels to have a digital engagement strategy that creates meaningful interactions on social channels. Desktop still converts higher, but the path to a booking is a journey full of touch points across social. Now that social media platforms are maturing, hotels can go beyond targeting their own guests to discovering new profitable audiences. They can reach and drive sales for all sides of the business: leisure, corporate and group sales. However, before hoteliers think about social engagement, they need to cover the basics of personalization and one-to-one marketing. Read on...

Chris Teso

Social media has traditionally been approached as a marketing tool for top-of-funnel activities. However, the activities associated with generating awareness, like creating viral posts and taking advantage of real-time marketing moments, are difficult to measure and even harder to link to real business value. Yet, marketers innately know that social media has real opportunity as their audience is there—in volume and in frequency. As a result, a new trend is emerging among hotel marketers that takes distinct advantage of the direct follower model of social networks: the marriage of the loyalty program with social media marketing. Read on...

Coming Up In The March Online Hotel Business Review

Feature Focus
Human Resources: Inspiring a Journey of Success
In an increasingly competitive environment where hotels are competing to attract, and more importantly, to keep top talent, Human Resource managers are realizing the need to focus on improving their Employee Experience. Smart managers are embracing the idea of Employee Wellness which translates into a system of physical, mental, emotional, and purposeful well-being. Some organizations are even providing free counseling for their employees and their dependents. The goal is to nurture, support and engage with their employees in a way that increases productivity, improves customer service, enhances loyalty, and creates a more harmonious work environment for all. Along with this development is the need for more effective, ongoing training. Many HR managers rely on external training firms for this, but there is a growing trend which taps the experience and expertise that already exists within the organization. For example, younger employees likely have greater knowledge of social media which an older generation might struggle with. Harnessing this peer-to-peer learning can be an efficient and cost effective way of increasing skills, and as a result, the knowledge transferred is likely to be more acceptable and relevant. Finally, HR managers need to foster an environment that empowers people and taps into their full potential, inspiring a personal journey of success. The March Hotel Business Review will take a look at some of the strategies and techniques that human resource directors are currently developing in order to achieve success.