Building an Effective Hotel Branding Strategy

Are you a hotel professional willing to create stronger ties with your guests in order to achieve a higher customer retention? Then, you must consider reviewing your branding in a way to make it more appealing to your target market. As a hotelier, you must think beyond offering a room and focus on communicating your business intangible elements that make your property unique. According to a research mentioned by the digital marketing agency DEPT, millennials believe that a brand purpose allows to identify to a particular organization and is thus an important factor influencing their buying decision.  According to a research mentioned by the travel agency Condor, “Millennials constitute the largest population and is the generation that travel the most to date”. That is why branding must be at the center of the stage for hospitality marketers.

What Does Hotel Branding Stand For?

When thinking about branding, name and logos are usually the first elements that come to people’s minds. Those are certainly important elements of branding in addition to a key value proposition. Nevertheless, behind a powerful branding is also a storytelling defining your organization’s principles and transmitting a consistent message to your target audience. Indeed, branding will allow you to build the desired reputation for your property. As a result, your guests will understand what to expect from your brand. It is all about creating an emotional connection with your guests and establish trust with them.

What are the Elements to Consider for your Branding Strategy?

In order to develop an effective branding strategy, it is crucial to understand well your audience and the segments you are willing to target whether they are leisure of business travelers.

In addition, proceeding with benchmarking research is also important as you need to understand well your competitive set in order to know how to stand out in the market with your brand. You must also be able to define your hotel’s core philosophy so you deliver the right message to your customers. Nowadays, social media are powerful tools to communicate the values of your brand and develop relationships with your guests before, during and after their stay. The font, voice tone, images, illustrations, photography and stories style are elements that can showcase the meaning of your brand and who you really are as a hotel.

How to Develop an Effective Hotel Branding?

Here are two important tips you must consider if you are looking to improve your branding strategy for your property:

Rethinking your Core Philosophy:

The basis of a powerful branding is to understand your core philosophy and picture how you would like your guest’s journey to look like. In this way, you will be able to better communicate the story behind your brand that will make your guests create a special relationship with your property. Your hotel philosophy will help your guests identify why they want to stay with you rather than elsewhere.

Selecting the Right Design:

It is crucial to choose a design for your brand that fit well with your brand personality.

For example, if your hotel is highly focused on green initiatives as part of your branding strategies, you must make sure that your hotel environment, brand logo and symbol look remind of these values you have. For instance, 1 Hotel has been a successful hotel chain when it comes to their brand storytelling through the look and feel within its several properties premises. Their designs are unique with all the plants and leaves that they have in their different hotel’s areas including the rooms reminding of how this chain care about nature.

1 Hotel South Beach Brand Look and Feel:

As we can see from these images from the property 1 Hotel South Beach, earthy colors are also found in the hotel decoration as well as in the logo to highlight the eco-friendly principles of the brand.

In sum, it is important to have your look and feel consistent aligning with your storytelling so people can easily associate it with your brand.

Now, start thinking beyond your logo and name and review how you can effectively communicate the values of your hotel to your guests in a way to develop unique bonds with them. Through a successful branding strategy, you will be able to have more repeat guests than you have ever had and increase your customer lifetime value. This will significantly drive higher revenues to your company. As you are willing to distinguish from your competitors, you must manage to create long-lasting memories through developing a powerful branding for your hotel. It will definitely be worth the investment!

 

 

Setting Up a Google Analytics Account and Connecting Data to Tableau

If you are looking to gain insights from your website visitors, you must consider setting up a Google Analytics account that will help you capture important data about your consumer behavior. Once collecting information about your users through Google platform, Tableau can allow you to track and link essential data about your customers to reach conclusions about your business. Indeed, Tableau can help you identify and understand data that you may not have been able to extract with other tools. Those pieces of data you will discover from the state-of-the-art data analytics software Tableau can allow you to step ahead from your main competitors.

What is Google Analytics?

Google Analytics is free platform to Google Users providing you with important insights about your website visitors and their behaviors while they are browsing your site through statistical data. Those analytical information can help you identify marketing trends and opportunities to improve the performance of your organization.

What is Tableau?

Tableau is a popular Business Intelligence Tool that companies use to convert raw data into visuals making it easier to understand the meaning of the business information you input in your file. This software can allow you to perform powerful analysis of the state of your Business.

How to Create a Google Analytics account?

In order to set up an account, you can access the Google Analytics website and login to your Google account. As soon you login, the Google Analytics home page will appear in your screen. Once you reached this page, you will have to click on the Admin button located at the top left corner. The screen will show you the three main sections for creating the account which are account, property and view.

Picture taken from: https://www.netplanter.com/set-google-analytics-account-property-view/

You will first have to click on account in which you will have to choose an account name and create a link with your organization. The next step would be to go to the property set up in which you will enter your website name, URL, industry category and time zone and click on create.

Picture taken from: https://www.datadrivenu.com/google-analytics-account-setup-guide/

How to Transfer your Data from Google Analytics to Tableau?

In order to connect your Google Analytics data to Tableau, you first need to make sure to download the software from the organization’s website, Tableau.com.  (Links to an external site.)Once you login, the home page will appear in which you will find in the Connect column the option to connect to a server. In the section, “connect to a server”, you will find “Google Analytics” as shown in the image below.

Picture taken from: https://www.theinformationlab.co.uk/2020/10/30/connecting-google-analytics-to-tableau-desktop/ (Links to an external site.)

After you select Google Analytics, you will enter your Google credentials in the dialogue box or select your desired Google account already saved.

Picture taken from: https://www.tableau.com/learn/tutorials/on-demand/connecting-google-analytics

Once entering your login information, make sure you are signed in in Google Analytics. Then the below screen will appear in which Tableau will request access to your data from Google Analytics and which you have to click on “accept”.

Picture taken from: https://hevodata.com/learn/connect-google-analytics-to-tableau/

Following this, a page showing the configuration settings will show in which you will be able to see your account, property and view set ups. You will have the option to select the date range you would like to pull your data in. You also have the option of filtering your users in the segment dropdown. Then, Google Analytics allow you to select the dimensions and measures of your choice or select a predefined set. According to the organization Hevo specialized in data analysis (Links to an external site.), Google Analytics gives you the possibility to select no more than 7 dimensions and 10 measures to be displayed.

Picture taken from: https://hevodata.com/learn/connect-google-analytics-to-tableau/

Now that you learned about the steps to connect Google Analytics to Tableau, you will be able to start visualizing and analyzing your data in the different sheet tabs in Tableau. You will see how life-changing it will be for you as a Marketing professional willing to identify areas of improvement in your business and reach greater business performance.

A Complete Guide to Google Analytics for Beginners

Are you a marketing professional currently managing a website and willing to increase your customer’s engagement? Then, it is a necessity to have a Google Analytics account in order to get important insights from this platform regarding your site’s performance. Indeed, Google Analytics will offer you the possibility to have a better idea about who are your visitors. Through the analysis of your user’s experience, you will be able to identify strategies to make your website more successful. From acquisition to conversion, you will be able to better understand your customer’s journeys when visiting your site.

What is Google Analytics?

According to the Marketing organization Semrush (Links to an external site.), Google Analytics is a platform in which you can register for free created by the company Google allowing you to track your website’s traffic. This tool gives you access to data allowing you to have a better understanding of the behavior of your website’s visitor. Through the different metrics analyzed by Google Analytics, you are able to assess your website’s performance and identify areas of improvement. It can also help you better describe your target audience while determining the success of your marketing campaigns.

4 Sections to Explore in your Google Analytics Dashboard

There are four main sections you will have access to in your Google Analytics dashboard according to the organization specialized in SEO strategies, AIOSEO, (Links to an external site.) which are the following:

Audience: This field helps you identify who are your customers. Here, you can find location and demographics information about your audience as well as the devices technology used when they accessed your site. This will allow you understand better your target market in addition to rethink about various marketing efforts for different user segments.

Acquisition: This section would show you how your users were directed to your website. Through this field, you will see which channels generated the most traffic (email, social media, organic search, paid search, etc). You are also able to make comparisons between consumers coming from different social media channels and assess your SEO initiatives efficacy.

Behavior: Here, you have the ability to see how your customers behave when they are visiting your website. For instance, you can determine which are the most visited pages and the time spent browsing your site. This can help you make conclusions about your customer’s experience and engagement with your brand.

Conversions: This field allows to determine the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns as it will show you whether people took the desired action when visiting your website. You can track your conversion goal whether it is a form submission, content shares or a purchase. You will be able to check how well your website encouraged people to take actions.

Metrics you Must Know when Using Google Analytics

There are several metrics under each sections described above that you must understand as a marketing analyst which can be found in the Google Analytics platform (Links to an external site.): 

  • Audience metrics:

Number of users: This is the number of visitors who accessed your website over a specific period of time.

Sessions: This shows you how many times your users visited your website.

Average session duration: This is the time your users spend visiting your website in one session.

Average pages per session: This is defined as the number of pages that your users visited in each session.

New/ Vs Returning Users: This gives you a ratio showing you the distribution of the new visitors accessing your website for the first time versus the returning visitors coming back to your site.

 Bounce rate: This is explained by the percentage of visitors who leave your site after visiting one page instead of continuing browsing other pages.

  • Acquisition metrics:

Channels: Here you will be able to identify which channels drove traffic to your site. For instance, you can see the number of visitors coming from organic search versus paid search.

Google Ads: Once you link your Google Ads account to Google Analytics, you are able to check the activity of your customers after they were exposed to an ad and clicked on it.

Search Queries: This provides information about the top queries in the search engines to find your website as well the landing pages recording the most traffic and high click-through rates.

  • Behavior metrics:

 Average time on page: Here, you can determine your user experience and engagement in your website as it shows the time spent on each page.

Site Search Queries: This can allow you to identify what are your customers looking for according to what they are typing in your search bar. 

  • Conversion metrics:

Goal conversion rate: As you set up your Google Analytics account, you also select a conversion goal for your website. Here, you are able to track your conversion that could for instance be a user visiting a specific number of pages, completing a registration, downloading a content or processing a purchase.

Once you understand the main sections and metrics of Google Analytics, you will have a better idea of how well your website is performing in the eyes of your visitors. Through the analysis of data offered by this platform, you will likely be able to create more attractive content leading to higher engagement and conversions.  Indeed, having a better idea of what your customers expect from you site will allow you to increase your reach as well as your customer lifetime value. Assessing the effectiveness of your SEO efforts and ad campaigns in Google Analytics will allow you to determine how successful are your current marketing initiatives. In sum, the data available in this platform will certainly allow you to rethink the best marketing strategies that should be implemented to drive more revenues coming from your company’s website.

 

Powering your Hotel Data Analytics with Tableau

Are you a hotel professional looking for a powerful tool to analyze your big data? Are you willing to make better informed-decision based on gaining critical insights about your business trends? Then, consider mastering Tableau which is one of the most popular data analytics software nowadays used by many hotel leaders around the world. Indeed, Tableau can allow you to have a better understanding of your hotel operational data. As a result, you will be able to improve your guest’s experience and maximize your revenues.

What is Tableau?

Tableau is a platform offering a robust and intuitive data-driven solution to organization. This software can enable you to unify all your data into one single location. It is a modern business intelligence tool making it easier for you as a hotel leader to explore and interpret your property’s data.

Why is Tableau an Important Data Analytics Tool for the Hotel Industry?

According to the Vice President of Revenue Management of Accor Hotels, Agnes Roquefort, (Links to an external site.) “It is not big data we are after but fast data and that’s is exactly where hotels need to be looking. We have technology that does incredible things for us. Let’s use it to get access to the right data right when we need it”. This experienced leader of one of the most famous hotel chains in the world suggest how important is the use of tools like Tableau enabling fast analysis and interpretation of business data. Thanks to Tableau, you will avoid overspending time on managing the huge amount of data you may have within your organization and thus enhance your productivity.

Besides, Tableau is particularly known for the creation of sophisticated data visuals with attractive aesthetics making it simple to understand the relationships between particular data. Once getting used to this software, you will see how you will be more responsive to your data analysis. According to the email marketing organization, Email Audience, (Links to an external site.) the brain of a human processes visuals 60,000 times faster than numbers or texts. The organization Tableau (Links to an external site.) also points out this idea by suggesting that it is easier for people to understand information through visuals than reading data through columns and rows.

How can Tableau helps you for your Hotel Marketing Analytics?

You can use Tableau to analyze different types of data as suggested by the following examples. As a hotel professional looking to improve your marketing strategies, you can consider exporting data to this platform regarding your website performance and customer’s journey. You can also visualize your social media presence and spending. Other examples of data you can picture through tableau could be the channels that generate the most bookings to your hotels. As the KPIs (Average Daily Rate, Occupancy, Revenue per Available Rooms) are important to understand the performance of your property, you can also create reports showing those metrics and compare them with the ones of the competitors. Another example of data you can analyze through this platform could be the budget allocation of your operational departments (front desk, housekeeping and food and beverage departments). This can help you identify where you could cut costs to maximize your hotel profit. Furthermore, you can gain valuable customer insights as far as concern preference trends during their stays which can allow you to rethink strategies to offer more unique experience to new and returning guests. Moreover, you can also create data visuals of historical data as shown below to understand past trends and predict future demands:

Image taken from: https://public.tableau.com/en-us/search/all/%23hotel  (Links to an external site.)

Once getting accustomed to Tableau, you will be surprised how fast you will discover insights that will enable you to make a real difference in your hotel operations. Marketing Analytics through Tableau will with no doubt make your property more successful. In fact, making better use of your business data through this tool will allow you to identify the right strategies to attract more guests and increase your customer’s retention. As a consequence, you will be able to sustain a long-term high profitability for your hotel. Start getting insights on sight through the use of Tableau (Links to an external site.) to gain a competitive advantage.

Essential KPIs You Should Consider for your Marketing Strategies

Are you a marketing professional currently revising your marketing strategies to make your company more successful ? Are you thinking about goals for your business, but you are not sure how to track your marketing efforts ? Then, it is time to consider having KPIs to understand better the desired results of your campaigns. Every successful marketer use these metrics as it helps them to assess effectively what they are willing to achieve. This might look like an ambiguous term to you, but it is actually nothing complicated. In contrary, you will be suprised how knowing about KPIs will make your life simpler when rethinking your marketing strategies.

KPI in Marketing Defined

A KPI stands for Key Performance Indicator and is a value that you can measure that track a goal progress. A KPI is always connected to a marketing objective and helps measure how effective a particular campaign is. Indeed, they help you analyze the performance of a specific marketing project.

Importance of KPIs in Marketing

Why having KPIs tied to your marketing goals is important ? There are several reasons why you should have a clear understanding of these performance indicators. According to the marketing and data analytics organization Klipfolio (Links to an external site.), it helps you determine which direction your company is taking. You can also identify the ways to attain your goals. You can finally see if your marketing efforts were worth it and what could be changed in order to have better results.

There are many KPIS in marketing that you must understand. Here is a list of the most popular ones and their definition :

  • Leads : It is characterized by the people who have expressed interest for your brand.
  • Cost per lead : It is the price you pay in order to obtain a new lead.
  • Search Ranking : It is tracking the ranking of your site in a search results page.
  • Organic Traffic : It can be referred to the people who visited your site through organic search.
  • Referral Traffic : This is the traffic generated to your website thanks to the presence of your link on other company’s websites.
  • Mentions : It is the number of times other medias refer you on their platforms.
  • Social Traffic : It is the amount of traffic generated to your website thanks to social media channels.
  • Social Shares : It is the number of times a specific social media content of yours was shared in the same platform.
  • Cost of Customer Acquisition : It is the cost associated when acquiring a new customer.
  • Sales Growth : It is tracking the change in sales in a specific period of time.
  • Conversions : A conversion takes place when a potential customers takes action. It usually refers to the people who make a desired purchase.
  • Conversion rate : It is the number of people who converted over the number of people who viewed your website.
  • Cost per conversion : It is the price you pay per people who converted.

Based on the marketing strategies that you are coming up with, you will be able to choose the appropriate related KPIs. It is time for you now to design the most innovative Marketing Plans by including KPIs in the development of your strategies. You will see how your managers will be be more convinced by your marketing campaigns value when presenting them KPIs interrelated to their objectives. Now that you master essential KPIs in Marketing, you will be able to better monitor your results and performance and effectively guide your team in achieving your goals. Prepare yourself for marketing success as you have a clear understanding of Key Performance Indicators in Marketing !

Developing a Value Proposition for Marketing Success

Do you have a clear idea about the value your company offers through your products or services? Do you have a good understanding on how you distinguish on behalf of your customers and the market? How do you think your company provides value to your customers?

As a marketing professional, it is important to develop a value proposition for your organization as it will help you determine the benefits of your products or services and see how unique is your company in terms of the experience you are offering the customers. According to HubSpot (Links to an external site.), 69% of businesses have developed a value proposition. You might be wondering what value proposition stands for and why it is important for your success as a marketer.

Value Proposition Defined

A value proposition is what a company promises in terms of value to its customers with regards to how the products or services are offered, delivered and obtained. A value proposition is essential to develop as it will allow you to make your company attractive. It gives you an idea about the reasons why customers should purchase your products and how you distinguish from the competitors. It is directed to the company’s target market. It is a clear, specific and short statement mentioning the benefits of what is offered to customers. As a marketer, you should try to make a value proposition as much unique as possible to be able to differentiate your offering.

Why Having a Value Proposition is Important?

Having a value proposition is essential for developing efficient marketing strategies. It allows to convince people to make purchase of your company’s products or services. Companies usually display it in the corporate environment to reinforce the company’s culture, motivate employees and guide them to make better business decisions. It can also be displayed on your website or social media pages to make people aware of the values you are offering with your product. Developing a value proposition allows to generate more sales and strengthen relationships with your customers.

How to Develop a Value Proposition?

There are several elements you have to understand about your company in order to develop a powerful value proposition according to the Corporate Finance Institute (Links to an external site.). Below are what you should know before creating your value proposition:

  1. Understanding the Target Audience

It is important to do a thorough analysis of your target market to understand who are your potential customers. Then, you have to identify what are the benefits either tangible or tangible your potential customers are looking for.

  1. Identify the Benefits and the Costs

It is important to identify the benefits of your products to assess your company’s offerings. You should also understand the costs associated with these benefits. Indeed, the value proposition can be determined through the difference between the benefits offered and the costs of your products or services.

  1. Know your Competitors and their Offerings

It is also important to make a competitive analysis and determine how you distinguish in the market. Here, you should be able to determine your competitive advantage through evaluating your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses.

Now that you understand the elements allowing you to make a powerful value proposition, it is easy to create one. According to the journalist Lindsay Kollowich (Links to an external site.), you should just create a concise statement that has a maximum of three sentences that can be read in 5 seconds that mentions the uniqueness of your products or services. To sum up, you should make sure that your value proposition is simple to understand, efficiently communicate the benefits of your products or services and explain how it is better than what is offered in the market. With a value proposition, you will be able to make better decision when implementing new marketing strategies as you will understand clearly how your products improve situation. You will find it easy to convince your customers in buying your products rather than the ones of the competitors. You will be surprised how your value proposition will help you boost your sales and conversion rate. If you have not created a value proposition yet for your organization, it is time for you to create one that will be appealing to your target audience!

Tips When Defining Your Smart Goals

Have you ever thought of having a hard time when deciding in which direction your company is going? Have you struggled achieving your ambitions? Have you been hesitant when making business decisions as you are not sure what are you supposed to do to improve your company? Have you ever felt like your company is not evolving while you have been working hard?

It is probably because you have not taken the time to think deeply about the current situation of your company and state your ambition clearly. Maybe, you have been vague about the goals you want to reach, and you have not really thought about “how” you could fulfill your ambition. If you have not done so, it is time for you to have your company’s goals more clear to you as it will help you better understand what steps you should take to improve your business environment. By defining SMART goals, you and your team will likely have a better overview of the company’s needs, and this will help you achieve better marketing performances.

You might have been thinking about goals for your company, but you probably have not made them SMART. Thus, this makes you struggle in the process of fulfilling your ambitions.

You might be wondering what does SMART stands for. Making your goals SMART means that you have to set goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Bound. Every time, you think about goals you want to reach, make sure to think about all these criteria to make it clear and achievable.

How to Make and Apply SMART for your goals?

According to the content expert Clifford Chi (Links to an external site.), when defining your SMART goals, make sure to use a specific and clear verbiage and ensure that you are able to measure your goals. Also, it is important to be realistic and make sure that you are thinking about attainable goals. In addition, your goals have to be related to your company and have to be achieved within a deadline.

Below are the different characteristics of SMART defined and tips to use them according to the management company Mindtools: (Links to an external site.)

  1. Specific

First of all, make sure your goal is specific in a way that it is clearly defined. You have to make sure to have specific wordings that make your goal clear and understandable. You should ask questions with the 5 “Ws”: What? Why? Who? Where? Which? Indeed, you want to make sure what goal you want to accomplish and the reasons why it is important to achieve this goal. You should also decide who is going to be responsible of the goal, the place where you will accomplish this goal and the ways you will be able to reach it by using particular resources.

To make your goal specific, avoid vagueness and unclear open-ended statements when stating your smart goals!

  1. Measurable

It is crucial to have your goal measurable in order for you to be able to track the progress of your goal. Make sure to have quantitative information when stating your goal. In order to quantify your goal statement, you should think about the following questions: “how much?” and “how many?”. Here, it is important to include percentages and numbers in order to have measurable goals.

To have your goal measurable, make sure to address the quantitative metrics that will help you reach your SMART objective. Indeed, qualitative information are not sufficient to guide you in the process of fulfilling your ambition.

  1. Attainable

You should make sure that your goals are reasonable and can be achieved. Indeed, the percentages and numbers that you use to make your goal measurable should be realistic. You and your team must have the ability to achieve this goal. To base your goal on the reality, you could consider your historical and current data to decide on how to quantify your goal.

You have to make sure your goal is not unattainable as you will not be able to track its progress. You should definitely be ambitious and aim for high but do not have a goal impossible to achieve.

  1. Relevant

Relevance is very important as you want to make sure your goal clearly relates to your company. It is crucial to be aware of the industry trends to make sure you set your goal accordingly. You need to make sure that your goal will benefit your organization. When assessing the relevance of your goal, you could wonder if it is worth it, if it answers the company’s needs, if it is the right timing and if it matches with the current socio-economic situation.

When assessing the relevance of your goal, do not loose sight of your company as it is crucial to consider your organization situation to set a pertinent goal.

  1. Time-Bound

It is crucial to set a deadline for your goal so have an idea of the time you need to achieve it. To make it an efficient goal, it should not take too long to reach it. When making your goal statement, make sure to include a specific time period (e.g: monthly, quarterly, yearly, etc). Setting a specific time to achieve a goal can be motivating to your team as it will put pressure on them to achieve it. Making your goal time-bound can help you project yourself from now until a later time. Indeed, it gives you a clear idea on what you can do now and in the future.

Make sure to have your goal time-bound as if you do not do so, you might loose track of the progress of your team. Make the time as concrete as possible!

By ensuring that all these characteristics are met when setting your goals, you will be better able to achieve them. Indeed, your team will better understand the company’s direction and the efforts they should pursue in order to make the company more successful. As a marketing leader, you will see how life-changing it is to dedicate time in figuring out your smart goals as you won’t ever loose focus on what you are willing to accomplish. You will be surprised how your relationship with your employees will improve. You would see how simple it is to improve your worker’s productivity through implementing SMART goals. By having SMART goals, you will have a better idea of the best marketing strategies to attract more customers considering your current performance.

Every Marketer’s Goal : Making Their Brand Top-of-Mind

What brands come to your mind easily when thinking about purchasing any products or services ? What do you think are very powerful brands as every time you want to buy something, you would directly think of these specific brands ? You surely have a list of brand that is in top of your mind when willing to make purchases ?

Simple it is. If those brands are on your top lists when thinking of buying something, that means that the company was successful at creating a top-of-mind awareness on their products or services.

Brand Awareness Defined :

First, it is important to understand what brand awareness stands for. Brand awareness is defined by the extent to which people are able to recognize or recall a specific brand. Those brands succeeding at creating brand awareness have a high market share and achieve high profitability.

Top-of-Mind Awareness Companies :

There are many examples of brands that have a unique brand image which made them achieve top-of-mind awareness. For examples, whenever you think of tissue paper, most people will immediately think about Kleenex. Whenever thinking of eating a burger, people are likely thinking about Mcdonald’s or In-N-Out in the West Coast. Apple is also a brand that achieved top-of-mind awareness. Indeed, Apple would be on top of most people’s head when picturing a computer or phone. There are many other companies that have been successful at achieving top-of-mind awareness like the ones mentioned here. Those companies were successful at achieving top-of-mind brand awareness as people would immediately associate words or pictures with their brand names.

Brand Awareness advantages :

Consider building brand awareness as there are many benefits (Links to an external site.) for your company. Thanks to achieving brand awareness, you are able to capture new opportunities and new markets. You can also have a competitive advantage, build trust with your customers, add value to your products or services and make people develop emotions and feelings about your brand.

Research on Brand Awareness :

There are many ways to measure brand awareness :

  • Surveys : Thanks to your surveys, you can measure with quantitative data the effectiveness of your marketing efforts, and the knowledge of your customers regarding your brand. You are also able to see how people are associating your brand and the level of their awareness.
  • Focus group : You can also organize focus groups to investigate about brand recall which is the extent to which people are able to recall your brand without thinking. Marketing researchers usually displays several ads and assess how the people from the focus group recognize yours. It can also be done by asking the group to mention brands that come to their mind when thinking about a specific product or service and see if people recall your brand.
  • Interviews : Thanks to interviews, you are able to collect qualitative data about people’s perception of your brand. You can know more about their feelings, attitudes, and preferences as you will ask open-ended questions. It helps get a deeper insight about your consumer’s behaviors.
  • Digital Research : Nowadays, you can find many useful data about consumer’s trends online. Google Trends (Links to an external site.) can be used to find many interesting data for your brand that can complement data collected from your surveys or interviews. Through many online platforms like Google Trends, you can find KPIs (Links to an external site.) that can be useful for your company such as search volume, mentions, traffic, social following of your brand and more.

Measuring Brand Awareness :

 After collecting data thanks to the research methods mentioned below, you have to make sure to analyze and interpret the respondent’s information. Doing a thorough analysis of your data will help you make the right decision for your company and improve your marketing strategies. In this way, you can attract more customers and generate more revenues for your organization.

If you find out by doing your research that your company has a low brand awareness, do not loose hope and instead take advantage of the data you collected to review your marketing efforts. Doing research is essential as the data collected from people can really help you identify what is wrong and what could be enhanced in order to achieve brand awareness with the goal of being top-of-mind among their customers. If you have not conducted research about your brand, you should really consider doing so now as it can really help you increase your brand awareness and generate business !

Reasons Why an ERP can Help you Improve your Hotel Operations

Are you a hotelier looking to enhance your resort’s operational efficiency, then consider investing in an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system. Indeed, this tool will allow you to offer unique experience to your guests by making your departments well-synchronized on an everyday basis. This centralized management system will allow you to make your property stand out. Through its use, you will be able to offer excellent customer service by ensuring the best in-house operations.

What Does ERP stand for?

ERP or Enterprise Resource Planning is a management system meeting nowadays the needs of businesses of all sizes centralizing your company’s information in one common database. Having an ERP avoids to avoid duplicated data and instead gather all your business information in one single system. As a hotel leader, accessing this system will enable you to have a cross-department visibility and enhance your decisions. In fact, you will be able to identify trends and process-improvements through the analysis of the massive amount of data available in this system.

Ways an ERP can Revamp your Operations

Exceeding your Guest’s Expectations

Having access to your company’s ERPS can help you gain the best knowledge about your guests as it can help you track information about their preferences and tastes. As you are gaining insights about your guest’s typical stays, you can offer personalized service and delightful moments to your customers. As you will be able to identify your customer’s likings, you can design highly targeted deals specially designed for the guests and be better responsive to their requests. As a result, it will increase your conversions as people will be enticed to stay at your property. You will then remarkably increase your guest’s loyalty and customer’s lifetime value.

Streamlining your Housekeeping Department

An ERP system can help you have access to the most up-to-date information regarding your room status. Indeed, through the ERP, the housekeeping team can instantaneously know which rooms are ready and which ones need to be cleaned. This tool can also allow to input information about maintenance and repair needed and create schedules that your employees can access for routine tasks. This can significantly improve communication in this specific department. Besides, laundry services can also be directly linked to room invoices thanks to an ERP according to the organization Infor specialized in ERP solutions.  (Links to an external site.)

Managing your Hotel Inventory

Through the ERP, you can keep track of the buying and selling of your organizations through third-party vendors and suppliers. You will be able to monitor the purchase requisitions across the different departments. As you assess the consumption trends, you can also identify unusual patterns. It can also help you determine where you can cut your business costs in order to maximize your profits.

Optimizing your Room Bookings

An ERP can allow you to have access to your room bookings data from different channels. Whether the bookings are made through your hotel reservation system or from third-party companies such as Booking.com, you can have access to it all in the ERP. While being able to keep track of the reservations at your property, you will also be able to identify occupancy trends and predict future demand by having access to various metrics and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) available in this database. Having another software will not be necessary as all the bookings data exist in the ERP. As a consequence, you will be better able to streamline and optimize your reservations at your hotel.

Whatever the size of your hotel, ERP is indispensable for your property’s management. Having an eagle’s eye view of your hotel operations will allow you to greatly improve your business decision-making and thus distinguish in this highly evolving competitive market. Once you implement this system in your organization, you will be amazed how well it will unify your people, technology and processes which will result in better productivity and profitability. The single vision of your business reality in the ERP will likely reveal many opportunities of growth for your property.

How Price Elasticity Can Impact your Hotel’s Average Daily Rate

Today’s hotel revenue managers are exposed to massive data enabling them to assess how consumers react to price change. Indeed, it is becoming a must for hotel professionals to adjust the rates with dynamic pricing tools that allow to determine the best rates to compete in the market. In addition, human psychology is an important aspect to understand as it affects booking decision. As a hotelier, you must understand that lowering the price is not always seen as the best deal for potential guests. This is when the concept of price elasticity comes into place. Here is more in-depth about how price elasticity can influence your revenue management and marketing strategies.

What is Price Elasticity?

Price elasticity in the hotel industry can be defined by the reaction of consumers to room pricing. In that matter, pricing decisions are related to consumer behavior. It is important to be familiar with the market dynamics and your hotel segment to determine whether the demand in your hotel is elastic or inelastic. According to the Director of Revenue Management, Rhett Hirko, (Links to an external site.) at the largest independent hotel company in the world, Preferred Hotels and Resorts, “price elasticity is an important tool but should not be used in isolation; an understanding of a hotel’s market is critical to understanding the total impact of price elasticity.” Once determining the elasticity of demand in different cases, you will see that decreasing the ADR (Average Daily Rate) does not always mean driving more room bookings at your property.

How to Compute your Hotel’s Price Elasticity?

Price elasticity is how positively or negatively a room rate change correlates with the demand. When the number is more than 1, the demand is elastic. In this case, guests would react sensitively to a room price change. For example, if you increase the price, it will reduce the demand. Inversely, when it falls below 1, the demand is inelastic and guests will not be affected by a price change. For instance, if you increase your room rate, it will likely increase the demand at your property.

Image taken from: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1057/s41272-021-00290-6

Below is the formula that revenue managers use to identify how a room rate change would affect the demand:

Price Elasticity= % Change in Demand/ % Change in Price

Let’s assume that your hotel is lowering the price by 6% which is increasing the demand by 9%. By applying the formula above (9%/ 6%= 1.5), the price elasticity would be equal to 1.5 which means that the demand is elastic and thus, a strong reaction in demand is caused by your room price change.

Three Factors Affecting your Property’s Price Elasticity

Seasonality

When it is high season for the hotel industry, the demand is likely to be inelastic. For example, people are likely booking a room in a ski resort during Christmas season regardless of the price. As hotels get fully booked and there are limited options during this time period, the willingness of customers to pay high prices is significant as they are likely interested in experiencing this season whatever the price.

Hotel Scales

There are different scales in the hotel industry according to Smith Travel Research (Links to an external site.) which are the Luxury, Upper Upscale, Upscale, Midscale, and Economy. In the Luxury and Upper Upscale hotel categories which include higher-end properties, the demand is likely to be inelastic. Indeed, a higher rate generates more demand as customers targeted in these hotels are attracted by high prices that add value and meaning to them. Those guests usually associate high prices with sophistication and quality. In fact, they are likely to pay a high price to stay in a hotel to live a premium experience. In contrast, when decreasing the room rate in midscale and economy hotel types, it is likely increasing the demand which in this case is elastic.

Booking Time

Several research found that guests are not really price-sensitive when proceeding with short-run bookings. Indeed, when guests are making decisions to book a hotel close to their vacation time, the demand is likely to be inelastic as they have limited time to look for alternatives. However, when looking at hotel options long in advance, potential guests are more price sensitive as they have the time to explore several offerings.

Once mastering the concept of elasticity of demand, you will be able to make well-founded pricing decisions and maximize the sales potential of your hotel. Whenever looking at price elasticity of demand, do not neglect fundamental elements for efficient revenue management. Indeed, it is important to understand well your customers, the competitive set and the market pricing. Finally, do not forget that low prices do not always win!

 

The Importance of Monitoring the Breakeven Point in the Hotel Industry

Are you a hotel professional willing to assess the potential profit of your property? As the hospitality industry has been severely impacted by the consequences of COVID-19 around the world, many hoteliers have been merely looking to breakeven in the best possible scenario until recent times. You probably have been experiencing the situation in which you were wondering what are the Average Daily Rate (ADR) and Occupancy you should be achieving to keep your hotel alive. Through determining the breakeven point, hotel analysts are able to have a better picture of the performance of their properties.

What is Breakeven Point (BEP) Applied to the hotel industry?

Breakeven point can be defined by the point in which the hotel’s total revenues equal to the total operating costs. In other words, it is the situation in which your hotel is operating at neither gain or loss and is making just enough profit to cover the total costs incurred by the property.

In the image found in an article about Breakeven and margin of safety (Links to an external site.) in the hotel industry from the accounting organization Acowtancy, you can identify the breakeven in the point in which the sales line crosses the total cost line:

Image taken from: https://www.acowtancy.com/textbook/acca-pm/cost-volume-profit-analysis/break-even-point-and-margin-of-safety/cbe

Understanding your Property’s Cost Structure to Determine the BEP

Before computing the breakeven point, it is important to understand your hotel’s cost structure. Indeed, the operating costs includes both fixed and variable expenses.

  • Fixed costs: can be defined by the costs that remain the same and that only could change because of inflation effects. These are expenses that are not impacted by the sales volume.
  • Variable costs: can be considered as the costs that varies depending on the occupancy level and facilities and amenities usage at your property.

Below are examples of what could your fixed and variable costs include:

Fixed Costs Variable Costs
·      General and Administrative Expenses

·      Marketing

·      Insurance

·      Property Taxes

·      Wages and Salaries

·      Machineries, Equipment and Software contract fees

·      Advertising fees

·      Interest

·      Utilities

 

·      Room expenses

·      Management fees

·      Food and beverage direct expenses

·      Housekeeping cleaning supplies

·      Guest supplies

·      Office supplies

The Hotel Financial Coach David Lund (Links to an external site.) gives an example of a list of variable expenses of a particular hotel per room with an ADR of $200 below:

Image taken from: https://hotelfinancialcoach.com/hospitality-financial-leadership-fixed-variable-costs-and-room-revenue-management/

Here is an example of a Profit and Loss Statement from the hotel Revenue Management Company Catala (Links to an external site.) in which you can find the list of fixed and variable expenses that are necessary data to find the breakeven point:

Image taken from: https://catalaconsulting.co.uk/how-to-hotel-break-even-analysis/

How to Apply the Breakeven Concept for your Property

As a hotelier, you will mainly apply this concept when wondering how many rooms, what revenues or occupancy level should be achieved to attain the point in which your hotel is able to cover the fixed costs incurred to operate your hotel in addition to the variable costs to maintain the guest rooms.

Here is an example of a breakeven application applied to a hotel case:

Let’s imagine a hotel has 400 guestrooms. The total fixed costs is $2.5 million and the variable costs are 45 dollars per room. The average daily rate is $260. From these data, you are able to determine the breakeven rooms, breakeven revenues and breakeven occupancy.

  • Using the formula as followed, you can find the number of rooms that must be sold in order to breakeven:

Breakeven units (rooms sold) = Total Hotel Fixed Costs/ (Selling Price per Unit – Variable Costs per Unit)

Breakeven rooms= $2.5 million/ (260-45)

= 11,628 rooms

  • Then, you can compute the breakeven revenues by multiplying the breakeven rooms*ADR (Average Daily Rate). These are the minimum revenues that should be achieved in order to cover all the hotel expenses.

Breakeven revenues= 11,628*260                                    =$3,023,280

  • Another crucial measure is the breakeven occupancy which is the occupancy that must be attained to breakeven. In order to obtain the breakeven occupancy, you can divide the breakeven rooms by the total number of rooms available during a year period. Here is how you can find the breakeven occupancy in this particular example:

Breakeven occupancy= Breakeven rooms/ Total Rooms Available

= 11,628/ (400*365)

= 11,628/146,000

= 7.9% occupancy

Now that you understand the notion of breakeven, you will have a better idea about your hotel’s profitability. Whether you are looking to better manage the room rates, reopen a property or develop your hotel business, knowing how to compute the breakeven will be very helpful for efficient revenue management and marketing strategies.

 

 

Why Market Share and Market Penetration Matter for Hoteliers?

Are you a hotel professional willing to assess the performance of your property in the market? Are you willing to know if you stand out compared to the competition? If you want to learn about your market position, then you must master those metrics described in this article. This will allow you to start thinking about ways to gain a competitive advantage. Indeed, market share and market penetration are important tools to determine your hotel’s success. Before computing these metrics, it is important to identify your competitive set and have access to industry’s data. Smith Travel Research (Links to an external site.) is a popular organization that provides reports of the main hotel’s key performance indicators (Occupancy, Average Daily Rate and Revenue per Available Room) of your competitive set for benchmarking purposes. If you are wondering how you can calculate the market share and market penetration and interpret its meanings for your hotel, then consider using STR data and apply the formulas mentioned below.

What does Market Share Stand For?

According to the Corporate Finance Institute (Links to an external site.), market share can be defined by the portion of the market a company has captured measured in percentage. It can help you determine the overall business of your hotel compared to the competition. It can be referred as your sales (revenue market share) or room supplies (unit market share) performance against your immediate competitors. The higher is the market share, the most your hotel has an impact in the market.

Examples:

  • Let’s suppose that your hotel has 300 rooms and the total rooms of the competitive set in your area that includes your hotel is 1200 rooms. The unit market share for your hotel in this case can be found by dividing your property’s number of rooms by the total number of rooms of your market set. Here is the calculation below using the formula:

300/1200= 25% market share

It means that in the competitive market set, your rooms percentage represent 25%.

  • Now, you are willing to find the revenue market share of your hotel or Hotel A in the table below. Below are the revenues of your hotel and the ones of your competitors known as Hotel B, C, D and E.
Competitive Set Hotel’s Revenues
Hotel A $170,000
Hotel B $90,000
Hotel C $87,000
Hotel D $122,000
Hotel E $38,000

First, you have to aggregate the competitive set’s revenue which is equal to $507,000.

Based on the revenue market share formula, your market share can be computed by dividing $170,000 (your property’s revenue) over $507,000 (the total competitive set revenue) which is equal to 33.5%.

Below is a table created by the learning platform Study.com (Links to an external site.):

Table a:

Image taken from: https://study.com/academy/lesson/how-to-calculate-hotel-market-share.html 

If you want to look for the market share in terms of rooms sold for Coconut Resort, here will be the formula:

Coconut Resort Market Share= Coconut Resort Room Nights Sold/ Competitive Set Room Nights Sold

Or 280/806= 34.7% market share.

Now that you are familiar with market share, consider learning about market penetration that can help you further understand how you compete in the market.

What does Market Penetration Stand For?

According to the Management Company Xotels (Links to an external site.), “market penetration measures your hotel´s occupancy compared to the average market occupancy levels”. It is computed as a ratio determined by dividing the rooms occupied in your hotel over the total rooms occupied in your competitive set. If the index found is higher than 1, that means that your hotel is outperforming the competition. If it is lower than 1, that means that your hotel has to work on better distinguishing in the market in which the competition is performing better. When it is equal to 1, that means that there is a fair market share and that hotels in the competitive set are achieving equal performance.

4 Hoteliers (Links to an external site.) that is an organization specialized in Hospitality and Travel News mentions an example of market penetration applied to the hotel industry (Links to an external site.).  By using the market penetration formula, the index found was 93% which is lower than 100%  meaning that the subject hotel must do efforts to achieve better performance than the competition.

Now that you are familiar with market share and penetration, consider monitoring these two metrics as it can give you a better idea about how your property is positioned with regards to the competitors in your segment. Those are useful tools that can let you reflect as a hotel professional on how effective your marketing strategies and business development are. As you will be able to get useful insights from computing these two metrics, you will most likely scale up your company’s profitability.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Data Analytics is Revolutionizing the Hotel Industry

Are you a hotelier willing to distinguish your property from the market by offering the most unique experience to your guests? Then, consider implementing data analytics strategies that will allow you to delight your customers through offering personalized service. As the hotel industry is highly customer-centered, you must constantly assess your guest’s needs and preferences. Nowadays, big data technologies exist and artificial intelligence is becoming very popular in the industry to gain insights to improve your hotel operations.

What is Data Analytics in the Hotel Industry?

Data analytics can be defined by the data that you can collect to gain a better understanding of your business and industry’s trends as well as customers in-depth. Through the efficient use of data gathered, executives are able to make better decisions to ensure a high customer satisfaction and beat the competition. Hotel professionals usually collect data through transactional data, guest’s profiles, survey information and industry report’s metrics such as STR reports (Links to an external site.).

Why is Data Analytics Important to Ensure your Hotel’s Success?

There is a high homogeneity in the hotel industry which makes it necessary for executives to implement strategies to compete in this intense market. As a consequence, it is important nowadays for hotel professionals to be familiar with the latest technologies and methods used for efficient data analytics. In this hyper-competitive environment, big data analytics is an important way to differentiate from other properties. Indeed, a proper analysis of data can allow you to positively reshape your hotel’s strategy through improving your customer’s loyalty and brand’s image.

The example of Mariott International – the Hospitality Leader in Data Analytics

Image taken from: https://www.marriott.com/marriott/aboutmarriott.mi

Mariott International strengthened its position as a leader in the luxury hotel chains market in part thanks to sustaining powerful data analytics strategies. The company has proved to understand well the use of data to guide decision and support innovation. In fact, the company has access to resources with very high-quality data allowing the team to ensure the smoothest and most memorable travel’s experience for its guests.

According to the data organization Datumize (Links to an external site.), Mariott International mainly uses data analytics for tracking the competition, finding other revenue streams other than rooms such as new amenities and improving customer’s satisfaction.

Besides, through the use of the latest revenue management techniques with access to vast amount of data metrics, the company is able to effectively forecast the demand and identify consumer behaviors. The organization uses popular industry’s reports including the ones from Smith Travel Research mentioned previously. The data in those reports allow to compare hotel’s performance with a competitive set in terms of the main KPIs (Occupancy, Average Daily Rate and Revenue per Available Rooms). In this way, the company is able  to think about solutions to outperform the competition operating in the same areas and targeting similar guests.

Recently, the hotel chain partnered with Amazon in order to install the digital assistant Alexa specifically designed for the hotel industry in some of its propertie’s rooms. This innovative technology not only eases the hotel’s operators duties, but it also allows to gather tons of information as far as concern customer’s desires and preferences. Subsequently, the company is able to offer engaging and unique experience to its guests.

To conclude, once you get familiar with the data analytics best practices, you will be able to ensure a long term-growth for your hotel through creating significant value for your guests. Also, the insights gained from data analytics will help you enhance your operational productivity which will contribute in leaving your guests with long-lasting memories from their stays.  Through the smart use of data analytics, your team will be able to gain competitive advantage and achieve higher profitability.