Monthly Archives: June 2011

Will Expedia & Groupon Turn Your Hotel Into A Commodity?

By Madigan Pratt

When travelers sign up for the new Groupon Getaways with Expedia they are told this is the best thing to happen to travel since the inflatable neck pillow. That may be true for the traveler, but what does it mean for your hotel?

Could the Expedia/Groupon combination turn your hotel rooms into a commodity like an airline seat – a product with little or no differentiation – left to compete almost exclusively on price? Here are questions you should be asking.

In a recent article, “What Groupon Getaways With Expedia Means for Hotels” Expedia puts forth the proposition that it makes good business sense to sell your $200 room for $50. Here’s their thought process:

To start – cut your $200 room price in half (to $100)
Then make Expedia/Groupon a 50/50 partner. For every room night sold you get $50 and Expedia/Groupon gets $50.
If your hotel’s operating cost is $40 you’ll make $10 for each room sold. Sell 1,000 rooms and make $10,000. (Somehow I suspect Expedia/Groupon achieves a better ROI. Do the math using your own operating costs.)

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Hotel guests to get late check-outs for social media check-ins

Posted by Kevin May

Interesting use of social media in hotels with the Radisson Edwardian chain offering guests the chance to keep their rooms for longer if they check-in on location services.

The UK-based hotel chain, with properties in London, Manchester and Heathrow Airport, will give guests an extra two hours in their room on the final day of their stay if they check-in on Facebook Places or Foursquare.At this stage the project is just a promotion (running until the end of July 2011) but illustrates the way property owners are trying to embrace the increasingly popular trend to use location-based check-in tools to obtain discounts of extra services.
Once a guest has checked-in on either of the social networks they are then automatically given the additional time on the room if they show their mobile handset to reception staff.
The company recently started placing QR codes on its menus to give visitors detailed information about each hotel’s restaurant.
The check-in project comes 12 months after the chain signed a partnership with digital marketing agency I-Spy, focussing in particular of social media-led initiatives.

Read the article on Tnooz

IHG’s bookings from mobile devices up by 1000 percent in 12 months.

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has witnessed a nearly 1,000 percent increase in room night bookings from mobile devices in just over a year. The group has gone from under $1 million in monthly revenue to $10 million in just over a year.

In the first five months of 2011, IHG has already surpassed its 2010 total number of room night bookings from mobile devices.

Most guests – 65 percent – who book through a mobile device are staying at IHG hotels the same night or within one day.

IHG has announced the continuation of its mobile app strategy with iPhone booking apps for each of its seven brands – InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites.

These new apps provide customers with the functionality to find and book hotel rooms, check rates and view or cancel reservations.

The iPhone apps for each brand contain booking and reservation management features, including:

– Search, compare and book at IHG properties

– Plan arrival by accessing current reservations and quick access to maps, directions and hotel contact information

– Securely store credit card information to expedite bookings

– “Touch-to-call” access

– Manage travel profiles

– Receive communication about the latest promotions and offers

– Priority Club Rewards members have the ability to earn points and redeem for stays

– Enroll in Priority Club Rewards (membership is not required to use the apps)

Michael Menis, vice president, Web and Interactive Marketing, IHG said, “Our initial iPhone efforts were targeted at our Priority Club Rewards programme, currently totaling 58 million members, and because our seven brands are at the heart of our business, we are building off that initial success by expanding our iPhone solutions to include apps for each of our seven brands.”

The iPhone apps for each brand follow the release of the InterContinental Concierge Insider Guides app for iPad in December 2010; the Priority Club Rewards app for Android in July 2010; and the Priority Club Rewards app for iPhone in April 2010.

Read the article on Eye For Travel

Conference on Social Media and Tourism – Verona, October 21 & 22 2011

Conference on Social Media and Tourism – Verona, October 21 & 22 2011

Web 2.0 communication platforms such as blogs and other forms of social networking are altering the playing field for many hospitality and tourism providers. Therefore, the purpose of this conference is to explore opportunities associated with this revised business environment.

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Le Web – Internet European Event – Paris, Dec 7-8-9th 2011

Le Web – Internet European Event – Paris, Dec 7-8-9th 2011

Don’t miss the opportunity to attend Europe #1 Tech Event,
3000 participants, 
60 Countries
, 50 Partners & Exhibitors

In 2011, for the first time LeWeb is back for 3 DAYS on Dec 7-8-9th 2011 in Paris.

LeWeb brings together the most influential audience in the Internet ecosystem. Top industry entrepreneurs, executives, investors, senior press & bloggers gather to focus on the key issues and opportunities in the web marketplace.

Get the full story on Le Web

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