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People today expect to be connected always and everywhere; sometimes it’s hard to believe that there was a world before smartphones and Wi-Fi. In the time since Wi-Fi became ubiquitous in hotels, apartments, and public spaces, it has fueled the evolution of connectivity in a lot of ways. Just like Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the most basic needs start at the bottom, and you can’t get to the next level without a strong foundation. 

By now, everyone is aware that hotel giant Marriott International announced on Friday a massive data breach that goes back more than four years and may have affected up to 500 million customers worldwide. 

After two years of preparation, the FlyZoo Hotel — a futuristic property that uses interactive technologies to do everything from greet guests to deliver room service — is ready for business. 

Mobile technology is fast becoming central to the entire travel experience. Consumers are increasingly using their smartphones to research trips, book accommodation, check in at the airport, and access their hotel room. But one of the next big roles mobile has to play in the travel process is mobile payment. The idea of an entirely cashless society might still seem some way off, but mobile payment is gaining popularity. As it becomes more widely used, its fast and frictionless nature will bring benefits before, during and after a trip. 

Digital marketing, also known as internet marketing, plays a significant role to boost hotel website traffic and online bookings. Recently, many big announcements were made in the digital industry, for example when Facebook introduced a new video format for marketers, or when Google announced a board core algorithm. If you are a new hotelier and want to stay ahead in the industry, then you should know what’s going on in the hotel digital marketing industry. 
 



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Hoteliers - Monitor Your Google+Local Pages Like an Expert

01/25/2014
    On January 14, 2014, SearchEngineLand broke a story that the Google+Local pages for around 4,000 hotels, branded and unbranded alike, had been “hijacked” by a third party. Many of hotels in question had unverified listings on Google+Local that had been claimed by the 3rd party to steal traffic, according to Danny Sullivan, the founder of SearchEngineLand. Google has said it is aware of and addressing the issue.
    As important to the hotels as the Google+Local listings themselves are for branding and distribution of local information, these pages rarely see much traffic from consumers. The greater concern is that Google Search now relies on Google+Local to display basic contact information and primary links in its organic listings. So, in effect a 3rd party’s that has set up links links on Google+Local is able to redirect hoteliers’ traffic from their SERPs to its network of sites.
    Hotels have been facing this sort of claim jumping for many years. Those who have dedicated resources focused on SEO monitor links and traffic on a regular basis and are able to address issues like these swiftly.
    For those who are just joining the SEO party, there is a short list of steps to help you own and monitor what is happening to your Google+Local pages as well as any other pages you own or operate across the digital landscape:
  1. "Verify” your site listing by clicking the “Is this your business?” link on Google+Local, then provide contact information such as a property’s or flag’s alias and a phone number. You will then need to wait for a Google representative to call and confirm your identity.
  2. When setting up your Google+Local pages, make sure to include links to and from your other web addresses including your corporate web site, your property website and other social media services such as Facebook and Twitter.
  3. Use website analytics to identify traffic and active links that produce traffic and/or SEO authority.
  4. Set up a SEO monitoring program or hire a digital firm to do this for you.
About The Author
David and John Atkins

Digital DNA Infusion, LLC


David Atkins has worked in leadership positions on the client side for Microsoft, Expedia, and IAC. David has a deep passion and knowledge base for all things digital. Complex challenges and new ideas inspire David. He believes that a solid relationship with the customer is essential to the success of any business. David served as the Chairman of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association’s (HSMAI) America’s Board of Directors from 2009 to 2011. He writes columns for Hospitality Upgrade on digital strategy and is a frequent speaker on digital trends and online consumer behavior. He serves as an advisor to many corporations. David has run and advised companies on more than $100M in global marketing spend via agencies, vendors and directly with various publishers.

John Atkins has broad experience with consumer and business-to-business digital marketing, cloud-based applications and services, back-end technology platforms and enterprise-scale digital media publishing. John currently serves on HSMAI’s Digital Marketing Council. Since 2006, John has provided investors, enterprises, start-ups and non-profit organizations with global digital and strategic marketing consulting services that include: strategic, business and product plans; vendor selection and technology implementation; competitive, market, field and user research across many market verticals and industry segments. Prior to consulting, John worked at several start-ups and at Microsoft in product management.

 
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