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  • Members Only: 2018 HFTP Compensation and Benefits Report

    By Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA. Results to the biannual survey conducted by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP). Information includes data on compensation and benefits trends for finance and technology professionals in the club and lodging industries.

  • IT Spending in the Lodging Industry Three-year Analysis: 2015–2017

    By Agnes DeFranco, Ed.D., CHAE; Arlene Ramirez, CHE, CHAE; and Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA. PART II: An analysis of IT spending data in the lodging industry based on reporting in the new USALI Schedule 6 — Information and Telecommunications Systems.

  • Letter from the HFTP Global President: Budgeting and Planning are Integral to Success

    HITEC Houston, which attracted HFTP’s largest event attendance in history, may now be behind us but the year is far from over. At the end of this month on July 28 is the new Club Forum in Sarasota, Florida USA.

  • HITEC Special: Revenue Strategy: Not Just a Fancy New Name for Revenue Management

    By Cindy Estis Green. A strategic view of revenue calls for proactive business mix planning and decision-making around deployed resources, well beyond reacting to what comes over the transom. Excerpt from the 2018 HITEC Bytes Special Report.

The Fundamental Problem with Hotel Group Revenue Management

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·16 August 2018
“The meetings and events industry is thriving,” says Issa Jouaneh, senior VP and GM of American Express Meetings & Events. Companies are recognizing that meetings engender growth within their organizations. And this growth mindset is creating more opportunities for hotels when it comes to nabbing bigger slices of the “group business” pie. But along with these greater opportunities, we’re seeing greater competition as well.

Understanding Future Demand

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·15 August 2018
Recently, we released five revenue management hacks. These hacks are designed to be simple things you can put into place whether you are using automated tools or working in a manual environment. This post examines how understanding future demand can help you better manage operational forecasts.

Why Group Business is so Valuable for Hotels

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 9 August 2018
While transient business often generates the most discussion among hotel owners, group business plays a vital role in your hotel’s success. Meetings generated 300 million room nights in 2016, and nearly $50 billion in spending on guest rooms. Those room nights were equivalent to 25 percent of the total room nights at U.S. hotels as estimated by STR Inc.

Rethink Last Room Availability with Multi-Channel Strategy

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 7 August 2018
Recently, we released five revenue management hacks. In the coming weeks, we will take a deeper dive into each of these. These hacks are designed to be simple things you can put into place whether you are using automated tools or working in a manual environment. This post delves into the topic of multi-channel strategy and how it might be impacting your profitability.
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Revenue Management for All-Inclusive Hotels: It's Both a Marathon and a Sprint

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·26 July 2018
Modern all-inclusive resorts are transitioning from revenue management (RM) strategies based solely around optimizing package rates, to more comprehensive approaches that take ancillary revenue sources into account. And all-inclusive hotel owners increasingly recognize that harnessing the power of a robust RM technology solution is what they need to maximize revenue and achieve business success on both short- and long-term bases.
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Best Metrics for Revenue Managers at All-Inclusives to Focus On

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·19 July 2018
While there is much debate among the business community as to whether renowned author and management consultant Peter Drucker ever said these famous words, there is little dispute regarding the truth behind them. In the all-inclusive model of decades past, measuring upsells and ancillary purchases were not typically a concern when it came to revenue management strategy.
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Shifting From High-Volume Bookings to High-Profit Bookings for All-Inclusives

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·12 July 2018
When it comes to measuring all-inclusive hotel performance, it’s common to look at the occupancy rate alongside other key performance indicators (KPIs), such as revenue per available room (RevPAR), as part of an effective revenue management strategy.
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The Rising Popularity of All-Inclusive Resorts

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 5 July 2018
For decades after their introduction in the 1950s, all-inclusive resorts grew in popularity among budget-conscious vacationers seeking hassle-free getaways. While their popularity dropped during the 2008 recession, customer demand for all-inclusive vacations is booming again, and they have become a clear hospitality vertical. Robert Cole, Phocuswright's senior research analyst for Lodging and Leisure Travel, estimates overall annual sector growth to be between 5 and 7 percent.
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How Business Intelligence Connects Revenue Management and the Hotel Ecosystem

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·28 June 2018
The data and analytics capabilities of a hotel business intelligence (BI) tool provide foundational support for today’s cutting-edge revenue management solutions. Working together, they have a powerful synergistic effect – significantly improving guest experiences and hotel revenue performance.
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Knowledge is the Key to Hotel Business Intelligence (Facts are Great but Insights Hold the Value)

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·21 June 2018
A hotel’s competitive edge is shaped by business intelligence (BI). Forrester reports that although 74 percent of businesses want to be “data driven,” only 29 percent are actually successful at transforming analytics into action. All that data that your hotel collects is only valuable if you can translate it into actionable insights that lead to better decisions and drive business growth. To create real value from BI, hotels must focus on specific strategies that close the loop between data collection and knowledge.
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What Marketers Need to Share with Revenue Managers

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·20 June 2018
When marketing and revenue management work in unison, there are natural synergies. Revenue management knows where holes in demand are, and marketing knows the consumer preferences to target the right customers to fill those holes.
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The New Era of Data-Driven Guest Experiences

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·19 June 2018
Since data is transforming the hospitality sector, forward-thinking hoteliers are making the most of historic guest interactions along with real-time and future data sets. Using data to present tailored offers to guests at key micro moments when they are most likely to convert, by means such as customer profiling, offer timing, booking behavior, guest valuation, and most notably, loyalty, is critical in an era where guest seek personalized experiences.
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Better Hotel Guest Data = Better Hotel Guest Insights

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·14 June 2018
Big data is big right now and getting bigger. Every guest visit, website click, and front desk phone call can provide information that’s analyzed to fuel revenue-making decisions and improve overall guest satisfaction. However, it’s not more data, but better data that provides deeper insights into the realm of your guests. And it is better data that holds the key to your competitive advantage. Let’s take a closer look at what guest data offers the best guest insights to drive personalization and profits.
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4 Things Revenue Management Has that Marketing Needs

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·13 June 2018
A hotel’s marketing and revenue management departments each hold keys to data that could drive more hotel revenue. Often, however, revenue managers and marketing managers keep this intelligence within their own departments.
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The Art & Science of BI for Hotels

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 7 June 2018
Business intelligence (BI) for hotels can be complex because it incorporates multiple disciplines. In a nutshell, BI allows hotels to capture data from internal and external sources (e.g. benchmarks and market data), then analyze and organize it in ways that allow hoteliers to improve business performance. It’s not only technology but a methodology. A powerful management approach that, when done correctly, delivers knowledge, efficiency, better decisions, greater guest experiences, and profit to any hotelier who uses it. So, is BI an art or a science? Actually, it’s a bit of both.
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Pair Up for Profit: Alignment between Revenue Management and Marketing

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 6 June 2018
While both marketing and revenue management are vital to a hotel’s success, they typically operate with different perspectives and different tools to achieve similar goals. The question becomes, how much more powerful could the sum be, if these two groups practiced their disciplines in concert?
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The Changing Landscape of Hotel Channel Costs (Airbnb May Now Be in The Mix)

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·31 May 2018
With rapid technology innovations and customer expectations shifting in new directions, the hotel sector is in a constant state of flux. And that includes the channels hotels use to sell rooms to their customers. In this dynamic environment, distribution channels and their costs are constantly evolving. Hoteliers must be prepared to keep pace by staying abreast of the latest developments and assessing the impact on their bottom line.
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Rainmaker's Profit Solution Series: Save Time by Understanding Demand

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·25 May 2018
In our next entry to the Profit Solution Series, we explore how guestrev® can help you understand unconstrained demand by segment – not just in the near term but further into the future as well.
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Is Direct Booking Really Best? Right Channeling May Be Better for Your Hotel

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·24 May 2018
There’s no doubt that there are clear benefits to increasing your direct bookings, for both your hotel and your customers. Hotels save on distribution costs and enjoy higher profit margins, while guests enjoy exclusive loyalty-member rates, along with the ability to earn and use rewards points, and reserve upgrades. And the ability to capture guest data is a key advantage of direct bookings, as the hotel can leverage data in the future for both optimization and personalization.
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What to Look for in Service and Support from Your RMS Provider

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·23 May 2018
services. And there is definitely no one-sized-fits-all, cookie-cutter solution when it comes to an effective revenue management strategy. You need a reliable, responsive and experienced partner that can give you the power to concentrate on the profitability of your business rather than how to implement, maintain or upgrade RMS technology. Here, we discuss what to look for in service and support from your RMS provider, from training and tailoring the RMS to post go-live support.
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Defining & Leveraging True Guest Value Versus Total Guest Value

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·17 May 2018
Guests can generate revenue for a hotel in many different ways. Revenue management powered by guest valuation algorithms enable hotels to increase guest wallet share, keeping guest spending on-property instead of losing it to local attractions, restaurants, spas or competitors. True Guest Value, which refers to the accurate valuation of your customer, is distinct from Total Guest Value, which aims to capture data to predict guest spend when on-property. Here, we further detail the difference between True Guest Value and Total Guest Value, and how algorithmic models and data can help you maximize revenue from potential guests.
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Rainmaker's Profit Solution Series: Do More With Less

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·11 May 2018
Hoteliers are always being asked to do more with less. I would love to say this is industry specific, but alas, it is industry agnostic. Everyone, everywhere, is being asked to do the same. And in that ask is the perfect opportunity. As an industry, we have reached the all-important tipping point of data. It’s all there, available for use. It is the ultimate tool to do more with less. The question is “Are you putting it to good use?”
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Optimizing Your Channel Mix to Maximize Hotel Revenues

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·10 May 2018
Developing a well-balanced channel mix and distribution strategy holds the key to profitability when it comes to maximizing revenues at your hotel. And there’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to channel optimization. It’s a complex science unique to each individual hotel, and dependent on multiple factors, like marketplace position relative to competitors, geographic location, industry reputation, and more.
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How to Understand the True Costs of Your Hotel Distribution Channels

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 3 May 2018
According to Travelport, out of the $2 trillion in annual travel spend in the U.S., $810 billion is booked through indirect channels. And with choices ranging from global distribution channels (GDS), travel agents and consortia, multiple online travel agencies (OTAs), and direct bookings, determining when and through which channels to sell your hotel rooms can be a daunting task.
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How to Balance Benchmarking and Performance

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog· 1 May 2018
Every benchmarking tool in the industry teaches us an index of 100% or more is good, and anything below 100% is bad. However, is this always true? Some believe the biggest mistake the hospitality industry made was creating indices, encouraging hotels to spend more time comparing themselves to competitors than they spend comparing to their own performance. This post will illustrate why you need to take more than competitive benchmarking into account.
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Views, Balconies, Red Wine: How to Increase Your Hotel Ancillary Revenues

The Rainmaker Hospitality and Gaming Blog·26 April 2018
Airlines and cruise lines have been doing it very profitably for years. Now hotels are finally recognizing the lucrative potential of ancillary revenue opportunities. A study from Cornell shows that revenue management systems (RMS) are moving beyond techniques focused solely on room rate optimization. And today’s cloud-based RMS allow hotel operators to apply the same RM principles to non-room revenue sources. However, with half of hotels still not measuring any type of ancillary revenue, its beneficial to examine specific ways hoteliers can tap into this lucrative revenue stream.

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