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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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Move Fast and Break Things

07/03/2014
Even days after the close of #HITEC2014 in Los Angeles I’m still recounting the details of this tremendous industry event and takeaways that I will use in the workplace. My mind continues to download information, insights and new connections to my network.
 
I know that there were many of my respected colleagues who have shared their thoughts from last week. I look forward to reading these blogs once I get my email inbox back under control. When I was asked what I thought of HITEC 2014 there was one thing that immediately came to mind: Move Fast and Break Things.This phrase was borrowed from the offices at Facebook. There is a part two to this motto: What would you do if you were not afraid?, to which there is an arrow pointing back to Move Fast and Break Things. This is defining.
 
If you missed the Tuesday morning session with Rachel Botsman you probably have missed the best session ever at HITEC. Yes, I said ever. I won’t even try to bring a summary of this fantastic, enlightening and inspiring message but I will share this: in today’s world it is the old way of thinking that will get you into trouble. For example, the old thinking had a 12-month timeline for research, discovery, planning and implementation. In the year 2014 that is not a luxury any company can afford. If you aren’t making decisions quickly you will find you are wasting time spinning wheels and are destined to repeat your steps. Technology moves too quickly. Being quick doesn’t mean being careless, but rather thorough and decisive.
 
Technology is outpacing regulation and legislation. You don’t have to look far to find Airbnb, Uber and Lyft. These companies, and more importantly these ideas, are disrupting the established communities. While it took Hilton Hotels more than 90 years to reach a number of available guestrooms upwards of 610,000, Airbnb surpassed this number of available guestrooms in just four.
 
The success of an idea or a company in 2014 relies on realizing a friction point and resolving it. Botsman said, “Once the public decides there is a new way and the new way is better, there is no way to reverse.” No one wants to be the Eastman Kodak of the hospitality industry.
 
At this juncture, there are only three choices a company can make: Put the proverbial head in the sand, fight or pioneer and embrace the change as an opportunity.
 
It’s the end of the world as we know it. Understanding this disruption, the momentum and ideas that it brings with it will define your work in 2014. This clarity might help you Move Fast and Break Things. And I am hoping you won’t be afraid to try.
 
 
 
Slides from Rachel's presentation are available at Collaborative Consumption

I greatly enjoyed the session by Rachel Botsman and I hope that HFTP will release a stream of this session so I can watch it again!
About The Author
Geneva Rinehart
SVP, Managing Editor
Hospitality Upgrade


Geneva Rinehart is the managing editor at Hospitality Upgrade. For two decades, she has followed the world of hospitality technology. On occasion she will chronicle hospitality technology issues, technology trends, and new technologies for Hospitality Upgrade on LinkedIn and Twitter: @genevarinehart

 
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