• The Art of Pitching: Is it Overrated - or Essential?

    Pitching… that thing we force notoriously introverted geeks to do for funding. The main idea is that an entrepreneur — unless his name is Elon Musk or Tony Stark — has limited resources and needs the financial support of pockets that are substantially deeper than his own.

  • What to Expect: New Changes Coming to Lease Accounting Standards

    The upcoming revision to lease accounting standards was one of the topics discussed by the HFTP Hotel Advisory Council in their February 2018 meeting. The surprising conclusion from the council: The hotel industry in general is not prepared for the changes, and there is no viable off-the-shelf software that any of the members were aware of that would assist with the accounting for the new standard.

  • HFTP GDPR Guidelines: Hospitality Organization Flow Charts

    This document is a set of flow charts illustrating data flow scenarios, involved parties providing hospitality services, steps of the guest journey and more. Four scenarios are presented: independent hotel, independent hotel with third party agreement, branded hotel and branded hotel with independent control.

  • Job Description Template: Club Accounting Positions

    The HFTP Americas Research Center has developed example job descriptions for club accounting positions. The process involved reviewing sample job descriptions, and compiling the information into standardized job descriptions.

Dubai: Growing its Mid-Market Appeal

Duetto Research Blog·25 April 2018
Dubai’s hotels inventory continues to grow at a rapid rate, with local owners and developers driving growth and market diversification. One such company is The First Group, which operates a number of properties across Dubai. The company has six new hotel projects underway, four of which will open ahead of World Expo 2020. We caught up with Mariano Faz, Head of Asset Management, The First Group, to get his take on Dubai’s continued phenomenal growth, and talk to him about how the market is maturing to provide a well-rounded tourism offering.
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Change Management: 5 Steps to Rolling Out a New Casino Pricing Strategy

Duetto Research Blog·19 April 2018
Did your new total-resort Revenue Strategy lead you on a hunt for a revenue management system? Or did rolling out new technology spur thinking around a more innovative pricing strategy? You could say it’s a chicken-and-egg deal. Either way, changing the technology behind how you price the rooms and amenities at your casino only gets you halfway; true profitability comes when you start thinking about valuing your amenities and rewarding your players in more modern ways. Just as your new technology takes some time to deploy, your new Revenue Strategy also needs to be rolled out thoughtfully throughout the organization.
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Dubai Hotels: Preparing for World Expo

Duetto Research Blog·18 April 2018
Dubai is changing as a destination. It is one of the biggest and most successful hotel markets in the world and it continues to grow, with up to 50,000 new hotel rooms set to open in time for World Expo 2020. Dubai is hoping to attract 20 million visitors during the six-month event. And, in preparation, its hotel market is changing with a more affordable and diverse hotel offering coming to the city. We caught up with Philip Wooller, STR’s area director for the Middle East and Africa, based in Dubai, to get his take on the market. An experienced hotelier, Philip has worked in sales, marketing and revenue management for a variety of hotel companies, including Britannia Hotels, Thistle Hotels and InterContinental. He now leads STR’s sales and business development across the MEA region.
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CBRE: Commissions vs. Revenue Trends Are 'Alarming'

Duetto Research Blog·13 April 2018
The hotel industry, both in North America and worldwide, has been riding a long winning streak, with increasing occupancies, revenues and profits. And while the performance has been good for bottom lines, one area of concern has been alarming increases in some cost centers, especially commissions paid to third-party distribution platforms. According to the CBRE Trends in the Hotel Industry report, commission expenses paid by hotels rose nearly 7% last year. And as the firm prepares its 2018 report, the trend appears to be continuing, says Robert Mandelbaum, director of research information services for CBRE Hotels’ Americas Research.
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What Does Hotel Personalization Mean To You?

Duetto Research Blog·12 April 2018
To truly drive hotel innovation in the right direction, we should all start by understanding what travelers and our guests really want. For example, here’s a perspective on hotel personalization from an older gentleman we can only assume travels often and stays in a lot of hotels. This businessman is part of a large core of your customers who just want a nice room with good service where everything works.
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Quarterly Earnings: Hoteliers Continue to Promote Loyalty Schemes

Duetto Research Blog· 4 April 2018
Judging by comments from CEOs during recent quarterly earnings calls with stock analysts, hotel company executives still believe loyalty programs are the best path to increased direct bookings and by extension, lower costs of customer acquisition. In particular, the two biggest brand companies — Marriott International and Hilton — touted success they’ve had in attracting new members to their loyalty programs.
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How to Boost Direct Bookings with Personalization

Duetto Research Blog· 3 April 2018
Are you ready to take back your business from the online travel agents? As an industry, hotels have failed to keep their business in house. Too much inventory is being given away to OTAs. This is not the fault of the OTAs – it is the complacency of the hotel industry. Michael Schäffner is leading a roundtable discussion called, “Take back your business – boost direct with true personalization” at the HSMAI Revenue Optimisation Conference (ROC) in Amsterdam on 10 April, 2018. Too many hotels are giving recurring business to the OTAs. That should not be the case. OTAs have their place, but it is not for facilitating repeat bookings. Once a guest has stayed in your property or with your brand or collection they should not be booking via Expedia or Booking.com again. OTAs should be used as a door opener – and for smaller chains and independents they can do a great job at promoting your properties to a global audience. But after that, hotels should be taking action to win back their business and get the guest booking direct.
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Be Prepared for Round 2 of Distribution Disruption

Duetto Research Blog· 2 April 2018
Seven trending hotel news stories that will have an impact on your hotel Revenue Strategy.
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InnovativeHotel Ecommerce Strategies Bubble Up at HSMAI Conference

Duetto Research Blog·30 March 2018
I recently had the chance to listen to some really smart people – experts, I would call them – talk about best practices in hotel revenue management, digital marketing, ecommerce and guest personalization. As always, HSMAI’s Digital Marketing Strategy conference was fascinating, thanks to those who got on stage and shared their knowledge.
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No One Revenue Strategy Fits All Hotels

Duetto Research Blog·28 March 2018
Luke Rayner joined 1834 Hotels as its group director of revenue and distribution back in 2012, armed with more than a decade of revenue management experience in the hotel trade. Having worked with big corporate chains including Mantra and AccorHotels, Luke was keen to implement some of the big boy revenue management practices he had The post No One Revenue Strategy Fits All Hotels appeared first on Duetto.
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Dubai Hotel Market Prepares for Inventory Hike

Duetto Research Blog·27 March 2018
Dubai Tourism has just announced that hotel inventory is set to increase by 11% in the next two years, with nearly 25,000 hotel rooms being added. By the end of 2019, there will be 132,000 rooms in operation in the emirate. Much of this supply is being built to prepare for the World Expo 2020, which will open on 20 October, 2020, and will run for a period of six months. More than 120 countries and 200 organisations will participate in the Expo, which is expected to attract more than 25 million visitors from 180 different countries. But what does this mean for the market?
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Hospitality Reimagined: It's Gut-Check Time for Hotel Leaders

Duetto Research Blog·23 March 2018
I’ve never felt that the hotel industry will go the way of the newspaper industry and just die – crushed by a disruptive force as strong as digital media. The Internet did change the way travelers book hotel rooms and paved the way for third party distribution, which gave hotels larger reach but also slashed hotel profitability. But hotels weren’t – and still aren’t – going anywhere. I will admit, though, that I expect a monumental change to hospitality is coming. Setting aside the threats of the OTA duopoly for a moment, I would expect both Google and Amazon to soon have major impacts on the way hotels are booked. Someone will provide a way to reduce all the friction in the booking process and, similar to Uber, make it seamless and intuitive. Perhaps even more disruptive will be Airbnb’s growth. The fact is: There are many leisure situations where booking an Airbnb just makes more sense than booking a hotel room, often at a lower cost.
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Australia Hoteliers Must Focus on Acquisition Costs in 2018

Duetto Research Blog·21 March 2018
In 2018, hoteliers in the South Pacific region are expecting continued growth of international arrivals as well as general economic conditions supporting domsetic discretionary spending. Therefore, despite a short term impact of new supply, demand growth in Australia and New Zealand is expected to remain strong. However, improving demand forecasts don’t always correlate to more profits for hotels. Austrailian and New Zealand hotel operators must remain focused on the rapidly rising costs of acquiring their guests, particularly through third-party distribution partners. Commissions to OTAs in the South Pacific can be as high as 35% of room rate. As part of the Duetto’s customer success team, Philip Niemann has a close-up view of how hotel Revenue Strategy continues to advance throughout the region. We chatted with Niemann about particular challenges his partner hotels are likely to face this year.
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Customers Come First When Making Technology Decisions

Duetto Research Blog·19 March 2018
Seven trending hotel news stories that will impact your hotel Revenue Strategy.
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Revenue Strategy Requires a Team, Not a Hierarchy

Duetto Research Blog·16 March 2018
Teamwork is the key to efficient operation of a hotel or casino, with each staff member understanding his or her role and how it complements and backstops the roles of other associates. It takes a team, but it also requires a mind-set among all team members to work together, not at odds with each other. Sometimes, the lines of authority become blurred, often with less-than-ideal results. Such is sometimes the case with the revenue management function in a hotel, or even a management or brand company. Revenue management is a relatively new hotel industry discipline and has yet to find a universally accepted spot in the hotel management landscape. Newer still is Revenue Strategy, which requires a cultural change across the organization to get the revenue department collaborating closely with operations, sales and marketing to work together toward shared profitability goals. At some properties, revenue managers report to the rooms department executive. Sometimes they report to the director of sales or director of marketing. And while that seems to make some sense — after all, revenue management is a hybrid function between sales and marketing — such a structure can create inherent conflicts that can ultimately hurt every hotel’s stated business mission to maximize revenues and profits.
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A Tipping Point for the Future of Regional Casinos?

Duetto Research Blog·15 March 2018
The state-by-state movement across the U.S. to approve additional gaming licenses is accelerating as more and more casinos begin welcoming new players. Is there enough gaming demand for all these regional casinos? That depends on who you ask and where they’re located. Regions across the country are experiencing never-seen-before gaming growth, including California to the West; Oklahoma, Mississippi and Michigan in the Midwest; and New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania on the East Coast.
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How Your Own Data Resets the Hotel-OTA Relationship on Better Terms

Duetto Research Blog·13 March 2018
If hotel distribution is the love-hate relationship that hoteliers described in a recent HEDNA survey, it’s time for friends and partners of the hotel industry to stage an intervention and break properties out of this codependent setup. The survey of more than 1,050 properties, conducted by the Hotel Analytics Work Group of the Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association and recapped in February by Phocuswire, compiled responses from chain and independent hotels and management companies. HEDNA co-authored a report with SnapShot and Triometric.
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The Disruption Continues: Airbnb Takes Aim at Hotels, OTAs

Duetto Research Blog·12 March 2018
Seven trending stories on what revenue strategists need to know about the aggressive assault from Airbnb on the hotel industry.

Hotel Owners Understand the Need for More Digital Marketing

Duetto Research Blog· 9 March 2018
The hotel marketing experts must’ve shouted loud enough, because now operators, owners and asset managers have seemingly all joined in touting the importance of hotel digital marketing and allocating the proper resources toward it. And rightly so. The impact of digital marketing to a hotel’s demand, reputation and profitability has never been more evident than it is today, and yet hotels are still under-allocating resources to their team and their strategy, according to a number of hotel owners and asset managers at HSMAI’s recent Hotel Digital Marketing Strategy Conference at the Marriott Marquis Times Square.
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Iberia: Revenue Strategy for the World's Most Visited Tourism Destination

Duetto Research Blog· 7 March 2018
If Iberia were a country it would be the most visited tourism destination in the world. Combined, Spain and Portugal attract more than 100 million visitors each year, surpassing that of France, the world’s No. 1 tourism destination, which attracted 88.9 million overseas arrivals in 2017. 2017 proved a stellar year for hotels in Spain and Portugal. Hotels in Spain saw RevPAR up 10.6% in the first three quarters of 2017 while Portugal saw RevPAR jump 18.3%.

Segmentation key to success in Spain and Portugal

Duetto Research Blog· 6 March 2018
Spain’s home-grown hotel company NH Hotel Group saw a 11% increase in total revenue at its properties on the Iberian Peninsula. Demand was especially concentrated in Madrid, which enjoyed a strong 2017, and in Barcelona, which put in a great performance until the political instability of late September and early October, according to José Ignacio Sánchez Butragueño, Vice President Revenue Management, NH Hotels. “What we are finding right now is a reduction in the booking pace and reservations of about 5-10% for Barcelona market since the political instability started beginning of October. The good news for us is that we are gaining market penetration by adapting our strategies to the current situation in Barcelona,” he said.
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Marriott Leads the Way in Reigning In Customer Acquisition Costs

Duetto Research Blog· 2 March 2018
These days, brand behemoth Marriott International is less often referred to as an industry pioneer. As it has grown in size, the company typically lets other companies break new ground and then adopts, adapts and sometimes enhances whatever innovations evolve from the pioneers. But now, perhaps emboldened by its acquisition last year of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Marriott has taken the lead in what could become an industry-wide effort to reign in costs of customer acquisition. Sometime in the next few months, the mega-brand company will sit down with representatives of the major online travel agencies to hammer out the next round of commission levels for bookings those OTAs push to Marriott properties. It will be interesting to see what kind of leverage Marriott will be able to exert in these negotiations. It should be substantial.
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ITB Culminates Dynamic Year for Hotel Revenue Strategy in DACH Region

Duetto Research Blog· 1 March 2018
The countdown to ITB and IHIF in Berlin marks my first anniversary since joining Duetto as Director of the DACH market. Last year, I was definitely thrown in at the deep end, with the international travel trade fair coinciding with my first week on the job! In the past year, I’ve grown in my understanding of the ideal hotel Revenue Strategy, and so has the DACH region, which makes next week’s conferences so exciting for me. I’m looking forward to seeing hoteliers I’ve come to know well and to learning about what’s new in hotel technology to address the disruption we’re seeing in distribution from the likes of Expedia, Booking.com and Airbnb.
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Innovator's Spotlight: Casino Marketing Best Practices from Affinity Gaming

Duetto Research Blog·27 February 2018
Casino marketing isn't getting any easier, but the return on investment seems to be improving for gaming companies willing to invest in new strategies and technology, according to Vincent Lentini, CMO of Affinity Gaming. The gaming industry leader recently gave a wide-ranging interview to Global Gaming Business for its podcast. Speaking with GGB publisher Roger The post Innovator's Spotlight: Casino Marketing Best Practices from Affinity Gaming appeared first on Duetto.
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Product Innovation To Drive Success For Iberian Hotels

Duetto Research Blog·23 February 2018
The hotel industries in Spain and Portugal, the two main countries to make up the Iberian Peninsula, enjoyed a strong year of growth in 2017. The region benefitted from a large wave of tourism transference from Mediterranean destinations affected by terrorist attacks, such as Turkey, the French Riviera, Egypt and the Maghreb. However, political turbulence during Autumn 2017 in Catalonia saw key performance metrics dip in Barcelona and the surrounding areas.
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Driving Revenue Efficiencies Through Hotel Technology

Duetto Research Blog·22 February 2018
What are the components of the optimal hotel technology stack? How can these benefit your business? And what is next on the horizon? These and other hot topics came up for discussion at last week’s Revenue Management 3.0 – Where Next? conference, held in London. Professor Dimitrios Buhalis, Head of the Department of Tourism and Hospitality and Director of the eTourism Lab at Bournemouth University, led the discussion. Panellists who joined him included Duetto’s Managing Director, EMEA, Michael McCartan; David Turnbull, Co-Founder and CCO, SnapShot; and Andrew Metcalfe, Chief Technology Officer at Guestline.

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