Monthly Archives: July 2011

Mobile Marketing Summit New York Sept. 8

By Staff reports

Pier 1 bar none
Please click here to register for the Sept. 8 Mobile Marketing Summit New York: Holiday Focus 2011

Registration is open for the Mobile Marketing Summit: Holiday Focus 2011 on Thursday, Sept. 8 in New York with executive keynotes from Pier 1, Pittsburgh Penguins, 1800Flowers, Pandora, Equifax and Ogilvy. Mobile Marketer is the host.

The second Mobile Marketing Summit will be held Thursday, Sept. 8 in New York at the National Museum of the American Indian, a Beaux Arts Smithsonian museum in downtown Manhattan. Targeting senior executives and decision-makers at brands, ad agencies, publishers, retailers and service providers, the summit is the leading holiday mobile marketing conference. (Conference agenda below write-up.)

“With four out of ten subscribers nationwide using Web- and app-enabled mobile phones, brands and retailers can expect some surprises this holiday season,” said Mickey Alam Khan, editor in chief of Mobile Marketer and Mobile Commerce Daily.

“As this event and its speakers will explain, consumers are trained now not only to expect their favorite brands to have a mobile presence, but also some element of mobile sophistication – shopping, inventory search, price comparison, social chat, store location and buying capabilities,” he said. “Given that mindset, it’s only fitting that holiday mobile marketing is tailored to driving transactions on device and in-store. To sit this one out is leaving money on the table.”

The New York summit is limited to around 200 executives on a first-come, first-served basis.

More information on Luxury Daily

Laterooms to try virtual concierge service on Twitter and Facebook

by Kevin May

Accommodation service LateRooms has become the latest travel company to offer a “virtual concierge” service via social mediachannels Twitter and Facebook.

The UK-based website says it will respond to any message sent to it Twitter using the @laterooms handle or posted on its Facebook fan page.
The idea is to allow consumers to ask where there might be availability at a particular hotel or what facilities are available, and presumably is aimed at people on-the-go rather than those who could simply use the website.

This is different from its existing team that respond to comments placed on both channels, with a dedicated concierge team established to run the programme.
LateRooms is not the only company to launch a concierge service – KLM-Air France subsidiary CityJet unveiled a similar programme earlier this week.
The airline says it will make reservations for Twitter followers at hotels, restaurants and organise taxis and other transport from airports.
CityJet’s programme, however, is only running as a trial for the time being between 2pm and 4pm on weekdays.
Inevitably the airline will not carry out any requests that require payment or use of personal details, it says.

Read this article on Tnooz

The importance of hotel mobile website design

Every day new records are broken in terms of mobile usage in travel. But there is no definitive guide yet on how to turn a hotel mobile website into a successful engagement platform for mobile users.
Mobile users have a different mindset when approaching websites, therefore your hotel’s website experience must be quite different to engage them.
Mobile users are much more task-oriented than desktop users. And mobile users are either searching for local content or for a specific brand.
Mobile means smartphones, not tablets. Tablets provide an experience similar to desktops. While certain mechanisms may need to be adapted to a multi-touch experience, most websites that are optimized for 1024×768 should work well on tablets.
Considering these two factors, below are five simple tips to turn your hotel mobile website into a successful engagement platform for mobile users.
Five tips for a strong hotel mobile website

Mobile SEO matters.

One little known fact: Google is dominant in mobile search (see Google mobile market share is over 97%). Hence, a mobile SEO strategy can rely on Google only. Start by ensuring that your sitemap marks your mobile pages with the “mobile” tag. Also, use Google’s mobile keywords tool to verify whether you need different content for your mobile website.

Optimize the website for low bandwidth and high latency.

With the emergence of iPhone and Android, many web developers assume that mobile has become a web-friendly environment. However, mobile is still an aggressive environment where bandwidth is restricted and latency is 10x worst than using DSL. Hence, a hotel mobile website has to follow a few simple rules, the most important one being that pages should be smaller than 20KBytes. The W3 mobile validator tool identifies what is needed to optimize your mobile website.

Display the address boldly.

Looking for the property’s address and directions is the top task users perform on a hotel mobile website. A whopping 1.5% of users actually check out the hotel’s location and get directions via Google Maps. Hence, the address of the properly should be highlighted and easy to click through to Google Maps on every page.

Have a click-to-call button.

The second most important task users want to complete when accessing the hotel website from their mobile phone is to call the hotel. To service these users representing over 1% of mobile traffic, your hotel mobile website should display the phone number prominently and enable direct click-to-call. Note that it is critical to display phone numbers in the international format with “+” and the country code so that international users can call your hotel.

Provide a simple booking experience.

Click-through-rates (CTRs) for pages that are formatted for mobile are 75% higher than pages that are not mobile-optimized. Hence, providing a multi-touch booking experience is critical to ensure that you can capitalize on your hotel’s mobile website. While mobile booking is still fairly new, an average of 1% of all mobile visitors actually book a hotel reservation using a multi-touch booking engine.
If you want to learn more about what GuestCentric can do to improve your hotel mobile website chat to one of our specialists online or sign up for our Coffee with GuestCentric webinar.

Read this article on Guestcentric

Daniel Edward Craig On Creating Compelling Video Content for Hotels

Producing video can be expensive and complicated, and it’s far easier to get it wrong than right. Many hotels avoid it entirely, while others play it safe, producing dull, clichéd clips of ecstatic couples clinking champagne glasses while Vivaldi exalts in the background.

Can hotels produce quality video without breaking the bank? Sure, but it’s an undertaking fraught with risk. Having suffered through countless arty student films as a film school executive (and even made a few of my own), I know what not to do. For guidance on how to do it right I consulted a few of the pros.

1- In-house or outsource?
These days anyone with a camcorder can produce a video, but homemade productions look at best amateur and at worst like a bad eighties porn flick—without the sex. As a rule, hotels should stick to making homemade soups and pastries and leave video production to the pros.

2- Set a budget
A professionally produced video will set you back anywhere from $2,500 to $100,000 or more, depending on whether you hire an aspiring Scorsese or Scorsese himself. Read the rest of this entry

Hilton Hotels & Resorts Launches Hospitality Industry’s First iAd

Hilton Hotels & Resorts has today launched the hospitality industry’s first iAd as an extension of its “Stay Hilton, Go Everywhere” global multi-channel campaign. iAd is Apple’s mobile advertising network, reaching millions of iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users right in their favorite apps.

iAd campaigns combine the storytelling power of TV with the engagement of digital, so that users tap them knowing they’ll be entering a unique, immersive ad with a variety of rich interactive experiences.

The highly-interactive “Stay Hilton, Go Anywhere” iAd takes users in the U.S. and U.K. on virtual vacations at Hilton properties around the world, including: Egypt’s Nile River, the canals of Venice and the white sands of Puerto Rico. A compass rose on the bottom of the screen points toward a country name accompanied by a beautiful image, with other destinations moving into view as the user moves their device or themselves to the left or right, making the iAd the first to use the built-in, three-axis gyroscope of iPhone and iPad as the core navigational element of the ad. Read the rest of this entry

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