Tech Talk

Recent posts

Enterprise System Pitfalls: Summary
Today I’m wrapping up a series of posts on the broad topic of Enterprise System Pitfalls. In this series, my hope was to help shed light on the primary problems that cause us to miss budgets, fall short on capabilities, or completely fail when implementing an enterprise system. 

The Year in Review
As 2019 comes to a close, it’s time to count our blessings. One of mine has been the privilege (and fun!) of being able to reach out to so many interesting companies and get them to tell me what they’re doing that’s different, disruptive, and game-changing. The list of things I have to write about in future columns has only gotten longer in the nine months since I started writing this column.

Sustainable Innovation
Sustainability can yield multiple benefits to hotels. Saving energy and water yields direct cost savings. Revenue can be generated by guests who prefer to deal with businesses that minimize their environmental impact. And many would argue that conserving scarce resources is simply the right thing to do.

Meetings Innovation
The sale and delivery of groups and meetings is perhaps the most significant and under-automated functions for many hotels. Even though groups often account for 30% to 60% of revenue, most group bookings are still handled manually for most if not all of steps, as they move from a meeting planner’s research to a confirmed booking.

The biggest enemy to any system is complexity. In a system of inputs and outputs, such as an enterprise system, more complexity means more parts are used in interaction with inputs to create the outputs. Every part that must be built and maintained costs time and money

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.


What Does 2016 Hold for Sales, Marketing and Revenue Optimization Professionals?

by Robert Gilbert

The Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) Americas Board of Directors members recently offered their predictions for what to expect in hospitality sales, marketing and revenue optimization in 2016. The HSMAI Americas board consists of a wide range of hospitality professionals from all areas of the industry, including representatives of 24 hotels and hotel companies. I’m excited to share some of their insights and provide my perspective into the industry trends and changes ahead.
Prediction: There will be a vast amount of innovation in marketing – especially in personalization strategies.

Consumers are demanding more and more personalization and hospitality has generally been a laggard relative to other industries. The hospitality industry is finally beginning to see various cost effective technologies that should allow lodging to specifically enhance what they are already doing.

Prediction: Evolution of loyalty will be big; new models and new entrants will make us think differently about loyalty.

Loyalty may have a different definition in the eye of every consumer. Traditional hotel brand loyalty programs have followed the airline model: earn points and rewards. These models do not always endear loyalty; they recognize frequency with a currency. Loyalty is a behavior that makes people want to stay with you. Loyalty in the future may not always be about the hotel brands. Today there are booking brands and stay brands. Will consumers be more loyal to a booking brand than a stay brand? Not every lodging establishment is branded. Consumers may look at lodging from an agnostic point of view. When going to Austin, should I book at HomeAway, Expedia, Airbnb, a bed and breakfast site or The booking and distribution journey and even the trip purpose may be more important to loyalty in the future than the lodging product.

Prediction: Watch Cuba – development will probably start with cruiseline visits since infrastructure there is still weak

Infrastructure is already in place and it will be much quicker to add ports of call before new hotel construction with Western world consumer standards can be developed. It may be a new competitive destination for much of the Caribbean, Mexico and even some U.S. leisure destinations.

Prediction: Rate and distribution parity will be redefined by laws in other countries with broad implications.

If future rulings make rate parity illegal like they have in some European countries already, the entire distribution landscape can change dramatically. If consumers really can find better rate or better values when they book direct, how does that change the unique value propositions of the various intermediaries and distribution channels?

Prediction: There will be a rebellion against a level of “second screen” elite – a generation realizing that they were missing something in life because of too much screen time.

This perspective implies that some consumers will reach a point of maximum technology consumption and may want to go into a “detox” program for a weekend, a week or maybe a month. Some consumers may reach a point in their life where they have been so tethered to technology that they feel life has passed them by. Family relations, kids growing up, the passing of a loved one. You can’t rewind everything. Quality of life may resurface as a priority for some consumers or entire generations. Lodging implications are that these are our customers and we need to recognize what they need – or don’t want – when they stay with us.

Prediction: Revenue management analysts will evolve into data scientists.

The fundamentals of revenue management are not just about setting rates in high and low demand times anymore. Many hospitality companies today are already well beyond these fundamentals. They are measuring total revenue management, yielding conference space by the square foot, making channel distribution decisions based on the cost per channel and the net contribution of the room night, implementing variable food and beverage pricing. Any way to optimize revenue and profits will be enhanced by a data scientist, not just a revenue manager.

As the hospitality industry continues to evolve, HSMAI will continue to provide key insights and unique educational programming in order to benefit their members and the industry at large. In 2016, the organization will host seven executive round tables, produce conferences, white papers, webinars and facilitate conversations about emerging issues in the hospitality industry – all of which will be offered around the world in the Asia Pacific region, Europe, the United Arab Emirates, Brazil and the Americas. 

About The Author
Robert A. Gilbert
President and CEO
Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association (HSMAI)

Bob Gilbert is the president and CEO of the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association (HSMAI).

Blog post currently doesn't have any comments.
Leave comment

 Security code