⚠ We would appreciate if you would disable your ad blocker when visiting our site! ⚠

Siegel Sez

March 18, 2022

Siegel Sez

I must admit it is getting quite exciting. Like every other industry event in 2020, our Executive Vendor Summit was cancelled that year. Last year we held EVS in June because HITEC was pushed back to September. We didn’t know what to expect, but instead of the traditional 60 or so attendees we had a record 103 attend. 
This year we are back to the traditional March dates, and much to our surprise the crowd is bigger than ever! Of course, it helps that we have some crashers from hotel operators, but if they can deal with close to a hundred attendees from the vendor community more power to them! We have a great program lined up, and we are thankful that Aimbridge has helped us with their Westin Dallas Stonebriar Resort in Frisco, Texas. Hopefully all our creative plans will come together to make for a truly memorable experience. A big thank you to HFTP for sharing their expertise in putting on events, they are great to work with!
EVS aside, the Thursday evening event celebrating the 30 years since I created a little 20-page hotel technology newsletter will be an event to remember. The HU@30 celebration that was created by our friends at PROVision Partners will be something very different for the industry, but like most industry events, it will include a lot of great networking.
Many hoteliers are joining us this year, both from operations and technology alike. Having the industry get together for a fun and memorable evening is something that is long overdue. The proceeds from the event will go to the HFTP Scholarship Fund for those pursuing careers in hospitality. If you would like to join us, please click here to purchase tickets.
The evening’s entertainment will include a live band, thanks to Clairvoyix, along with industry leaders looking back and roasting me on my thirty years in the business. I am not allowed to see the videos that have been created for that evening, but my team says they are a riot. If you and I have had an exchange over the years and you’d like to get in on the action, you can submit a very short video for the event, please contact Liz at elizabeth@hospitalityupgrade.com.
Honestly, I can’t wait until Thursday night March 31, when the roasting starts. The best part is I get to speak last, and I am already working on my payback. This will be a unique and fun night sure to create memories and laughs that will last a long while. Can’t wait! 
Our Spring issue is soon to be in your hands or digitally sent to you. Spring is one of my favorite issues, because we recognize 10 industry Rock Stars from the hotel technology world. We have a dynamic and diverse group being honored this year. You will love how we don’t just talk about their tech accomplishments, but we get personal to really humanize our Rock Stars. If you are not a subscriber to Hospitality Upgrade in print or digital formats, please click here. I promise, you will love this issue.
A big thank you to Doug Rice for his Definitely Doug column that follows. Nothing drives hoteliers wackier than online reviews, and this week Doug’s deep dive into Online Reputation Management is a must read for all. The stats he shares are eye-opening. I will see you at the end with this week’s March Madness attempt at you-know-what. Can’t wait for Frisco, let me know if you want to join us.


Definitely Doug

Put Your Online Reviews to Work!

For better or worse, every hotel is affected by its online reputation. Summary ratings posted on metasearch sites like Tripadvisor and Google often determine which hotels even get consideration at the start of the planning phase. Further down the sales funnel, reviews themselves become important as travelers look to see what others like them enjoyed or disliked about specific hotels. Online reviews are an anomaly in consumer marketing: unlike your internal data, they are available for anybody to see, both for your hotel and for your competitors. You can be certain sure that if you don’t manage your reviews well and your competitors do, it will hurt you.

This week’s column will delve into technology tools that can help hotels manage online reputation more effectively. To be sure, Online Reputation Management (ORM) tools work best in tandem with Guest Satisfaction Surveys (GSS) and key customer systems such as a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system or Property Management System (PMS). Taken together, these tools can be used proactively over time to deliver a better-rated product, which can attract new guests. Feedback collection can also be enhanced through integration of chatbots, call-center surveys, and other tools, which I will not cover today but will come back to in subsequent weeks.

The goal is to obtain, analyze, and act on guest feedback. The “act” part may be as simple as acknowledging past experiences on a future stay by the same guest or choosing the best email messaging for a particular market segment. Or it can be as significant as deciding whether guest satisfaction scores might improve more if you renovate the pool vs. investing in staff service training. Hotel managers need to focus limited resources on things that will “move the needle,” but that means having the right metrics and understanding how they affect guest satisfaction.

ORM, GSS, and CRM/PMS systems each play often-overlapping roles in this process. This week’s column features a deep dive just on ORM; future installments will cover the role of the others. The main objective of ORM tools is to help maximize the attractiveness of your hotel to prospective customers, especially first-timers. As such, it is a primary marketing tool. The feedback you get in the form of ratings and reviews is not very scientific and probably doesn’t represent your average customer. It is mostly qualitative and will not really tell you where you will get the biggest return on investments in improvements. To be sure, it can help you identify strengths and weaknesses – especially ones you never suspected. But most important, it is the first and possibly the last thing many prospective guests will see about your hotel.

To quantify the value of different potential actions a hotel might take to improve ratings, Guest Satisfaction Surveys are much more useful: they are more representative, you can target them at specific issues, and depending on when you collect them, they may enable service recovery while the guest is still in-house, avoiding a bad review. And to act on specific customer concerns voiced in online reviews or surveys, or to market to customers in a more personalized way, you will need to bring at least some of the data from ORM and GSS tools back into your CRM or PMS. A full solution should involve these three sets of tools.

In researching this topic, I spoke with several companies that offer ORM, GSS, and/or CRM tools (some focus on just one, others have two or all three). There were many commonalities but also many differences in the solutions. ORM is part science and part art, so differences are to be expected. But I learned a great deal in conversations with several providers across this spectrum, including dailypoint, GuestRevu, Medallia, RepUp (part of Xperium), ReviewPro (part of Shiji Group), Revinate, and Sentinel (part of D-EDGE); I thank them for their time and thoughtful contributions. TrustYou also plays in the ORM space but did not respond to multiple requests for an interview.


Click here to read more of Doug’s column on Put Your Online Reviews to Work!


Douglas Rice
Email: douglas.rice@hosptech.net
Twitter: @dougrice
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ricedouglas
Put Your Online Reviews to Work!


#HospitalityHelps Now Supported by Over 300 Hotels in 38 Countries with 33,575 Room Nights Available for Displaced Ukrainian Residents
- Nonius Acquires Criton as Demand for Mobile Technology in Hospitality Soars
- P3 Hotel Software Targets Growth in U.S. and Germany After Securing $1.2M Investment
- Atlanta Journal-Constitution Names Venza a Winner of the Metro Atlanta Top Workplaces 2022 Award
- SALTO Acquires Automated Face Recognition Innovator COGNITEC Systems

For more information on Corporate News for 3/18/2022


- Visual Matrix Continues Global Expansion Through Partnership with Data Express Latinoamérica Across Central and South America
The electronic invoicing company will serve as the exclusive reseller of Visual Matrix PMS solutions throughout both regions.


- SHR Recognized as Elite Expedia Partner for Second Straight Year
Sceptre Hospitality Resources (SHR), which offers a powerful suite of solutions to help hoteliers improve the guest experience and drive revenue at each touchpoint along the guest journey, has once again announced its status as an Expedia Elite Connectivity Partner, for the second consecutive year.


- Lily Country Club to Implement IDeaS Revenue Management System Ahead of Demand Resurgence
IDeaS, a SAS company, the world’s leading provider of hotel revenue management software and services, announced today that the Lily Country Club will implement IDeaS Revenue Management System (RMS) at its 507-room Norwegian golf resort—the third-largest hotel in the Oslo area.


- Volara Partners With Josh.ai to Bring Premium Privacy Centric Voice Assistant Solutions to the Ultra-Luxury Hotel Market
- Reside Expands Virdee Rollout Portfolio-Wide
- InterContinental Barcelona updates its Guest Technology
- Fairfield by Marriott Hotel Chooses Guesthub to Manage and Track Parcels

For more information on Guest Facing Technology for 3/18/2022


- HSMAI to Honor GCommerce Solutions with Bronze Adrian Award for Outstanding Travel Marketing
The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) will honor GCommerce Solutions with a Bronze Adrian Award for travel marketing excellence for its winning entry in the 65th annual  Adrian Awards, the largest and most prestigious global travel marketing competition.


- Knowland Provides Data-Driven Insights to Jumeirah Emirates Towers
Today Knowland, the world’s leading provider of data-as-a-service insights on meetings and events for hospitality, announced that Jumeirah Emirates Towers in Dubai has selected its platform to gain insights into Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) business trends.


- AI Functionality Within Aptech’s Execuvue Is Making Business Intelligence Visualizations and Reporting a Breeze
Leveraging the IBM Cognos® Analytics and AI Assistant, hoteliers can build dashboards and charts, identify trends, and select the best visualizations for reports on demand based on simple commands, such as ‘Show Me Room Revenues by State.’

- OTH Hotels Resorts Partners with ProfitSword for Robust Business Intelligence and Performance Forecasting Capabilities
Rapidly growing hotel management company leverages ProfitSword suite for its ability to serve as a comprehensive source of real-time business performance health to maximize decision-making and operational efficiency.


- Cloud5 Achieves Top Hospitality Honor in the 2021 Mitel Partner Awards
Cloud5 Communications, a leading provider of communications solutions for more than 5,000 hotels, MDUs, and commercial facilities across the Americas, has been named Hospitality Partner of the Year, Americas, in the Mitel Global Partner Awards.

- Technology Distributor WAV to Supply New Nomadix Networks and Full Product Portfolio
WAV, LLC, a full-service distributor of LTE, wireless broadband, networking, and Wi-Fi equipment, and ​​Nomadix® Inc​., a technology leader in hospitality and multi-tenant industries, today announced WAV will now supply Nomadix’s suite of internet and guest-facing technologies through its channel across North America.


- Quore Checks-In 5,000 Hotels and Upgrades Cleanings Plus
Quore, a leading provider of workflow management and productivity tools for hotels, today introduced new features to its Cleanings Plus application as the company reaches a milestone of serving 5,000 hotels.


- UniFocus Boosts Hotelier Capabilities to Attract and Retain Employees With Intelligent Tip Pooling
UniFocus, the leading provider of Workforce Management Systems, has today announced its launch of an advanced tip pooling software feature. This feature streamlines hotel business operations while automatically providing employees with the precise amount of tips owed. Combined with UniFocus’ innovative instant pay capabilities (Rain), the new functionality will allow hoteliers to address widespread demands for flexible wage access which has become essential to creating and maintaining a loyal and productive workforce.

- Gillis Sales Reports $23M in Actual Revenue for Hospitality Clients in 2021, Increases New Business by 40 Percent
Gillis Sales, a remote sales and training organization for hoteliers, reported today that it generated $23M in actual revenue for its client base in 2021 while increasing its client base by 40 percent since the beginning of the pandemic. These numbers indicate that hotels are seeing the benefits of investing in sales to increase profitability as travel resumes.


- Little National Sydney Selects ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions to Implement Industry-Leading Security Access Alongside Energy Management Solutions
ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions, a leading provider of advanced security technology for the hospitality industry, has announced the successful implementation of VingCard Allure door locks at Little National Sydney alongside the integration of energy management solutions provided by Telkonet. and self check-in solutions provided by Liverton.

- Updates and Enhancements to Programs, Solutions, and Services
In the spring of 2021, VENZA announced a commitment to produce and release an extensive list of program updates as part of their Product Roadmap Vision 2022. As of last month, they have delivered on this promise. Vision 2022 updates and enhancements are now available to all VENZA customers.


- M3 Announces Keynote Speaker for 2022 Partners’ Meeting
M3 has announced Dr. Mary Key as the keynote speaker for its 2022 Partners’ Meeting in St. Pete, Florida. Key is a trusted advisor, international consultant, author, speaker, and executive coach.


- Hotel Industry Says Automation & Integration Vital to Recovery
The latest survey from Duetto reveals nearly 78% of hoteliers will increase their investment in hotel tech in the next three years.


- Tripadvisor 2021 Review Transparency Report
- JLL: Hotel Industry Has Opportunity to Enact Real Change with Sustainability
- 7 Ways for Limited-Service Properties to Drive Ancillary Revenue
- 10 Hotels that Have Robot Employees

For more information on Piqued Our Interest for 3/18/2022

And now for the You-Know-What...

It's March Madness....


If you want a sure thing in your men's NCAA tournament pool, you'll need to fill out the 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 brackets necessary to guarantee a winner. Just leave yourself *plenty* of time to finish them all. If you filled out one bracket every second it would take you 292 billion years to cover all the possibilities.

Good Luck!  


want to read more articles like this?

want to read more articles like this?

Sign up to receive our twice-a-month Watercooler and Siegel Sez Newsletters and never miss another article or news story.