This Week in Hospitality Marketing Live Show 265 September 4th 2020
This Week in Hospitality Marketing Live Show 265 September 4th 2020
- September 4, 2020
- live, Live Shows, liveshow, livestream
This Week In Hospitality Marketing Live Show 265
Brands & Product
Intermediaries & Distribution
Marketing & Strategy
Tech & Finance
This Week in Hospitality Marketing Live Show 265 Transcripts (English U.S.)
[00:00:17.310] – Loren
Hello, everyone, and good morning to this week, in hospitality marketing, live show number two hundred and sixty five. I am one of your co-hosts, as you can see, of many. And we also have a special new co-host with us, Mr. Richard Farrar. But let me introduce everyone very quickly through the roster. Mr. Richard Ferrars in my upper corner, like in Hollywood Squares. Adelle Goodman is over to my left, who is the founder of Aspire Reputation.
[00:00:43.560] – Loren
That was my name.
[00:00:48.560] – Loren & Tim
I almost got far enough that it is when you’re watching the blooper reel. The show comes after the show is the blooper reel. We know also as Mr. Benny from 360, Stephanie Smith, Sparks Smith excuse me, with Coquille Marketing, Mr. Peter with Tim, Peter and Associates and Dan Waxman with Sassado.
[00:01:13.980] – Dan
Yeah, I mean that name.
[00:01:15.240] – Loren
So I remember the Phil Collins song, but you know, it was always remember that song. I kind of remember it a little bit, but which by the way, of running the show for us.
[00:01:25.560] – Loren
Yeah. I’ll ask him if she wants to get in. And Dean is having commercials, so he’ll be back in a few days.
[00:01:29.940] – Loren
We’ll have a couple more co-hosts with us as well. Robert, give us an early present. He give us ten minutes to review his list this week. Oh, yeah, I do.
[00:01:41.340] – Loren
I have a show and tell a topic that I want to bring in whenever it comes to appropriate. It’s called security and getting hacked in Facebook. Business manager, class one on one on how that happens and what to do to avoid it.
[00:01:51.850] – Loren
You go. It was a painful week, my friends. A painful week. So with that in my Richardsons, you are. I know you’ve been with us many weeks and you’ve watched this many times and you’ve been patient. As to the chaos that you you view, I thought I’d give you the first crack at what it is you might want to talk about and then we can dive in anything else afterwards.
[00:02:13.040] – Richard
Well, you know, I I’m I used to work with Marriott and I’m a consultant, and it just it just seems like the elephant in the room, of course, continues to be our industry. And, you know, when you talk to look at the travel information, it says 50 percent nationwide states occupancy. When you look at the data, though, most of that’s coming from the the smaller hotels, these large, big boxes are are going to be crippled for quite a while.
[00:02:41.630] – Richard
So to me, that sort of becomes obvious, the room, because these these big, big properties are the group houses. They have a lot of associates. They have they’re important to downtown cities. That, to me, continues to sort of be the the the thing that that really bothers me, how those things can ever sort of get back. I think Ben was saying how, you know, there’s some bounce back in in and Great Britain with with, you know, with travel and all in an occupancy.
[00:03:14.780] – Richard
I just don’t see how that’s going to happen for these big boxes that really are so, so, so important to to our business. So that that to me becomes the thing that that bounce around. I know that you guys talk about a lot of things on here and jump around a lot. I think it did appear a bit in Robert’s note that came up two minutes ago about, again, how, you know, the winners and losers are.
[00:03:38.160] – Richard
It looks like size matters and location matters a lot more.
[00:03:43.490] – Tim
If I can add if I can add a quick thing to that. I saw a new research just yesterday that comes from a very respected source. I can’t reveal it yet because it will come out in a week or so. I can talk about what they found and they were talking to people who travel for business and when they thought they might be traveling for business again. And the numbers were Q1. Twenty twenty one. The number was six percent to two.
[00:04:12.680] – Tim
Twenty twenty one. The number was eight percent. Q Three twenty twenty one was twenty six percent and Q4 twenty, twenty one was forty four percent. And what I thought was really striking about that was you were talking the end of next year and we still haven’t reached fifty percent of people having confidence that they will be traveling for business at that. You know, obviously there will be pockets, there will be places where we see some boost and things like that.
[00:04:42.200] – Tim
But I think you’re exactly right, Richard. The group houses are going to have some troubles for some time to come, and that that’s something that we’re really going have to watch for as we go forward. Because if the demand isn’t there, you know, what else can you do?
[00:04:56.180] – Tristan
So what you’re saying is yourself still just another stable fuel, isn’t it?
[00:05:01.220] – Tristan
That’s that’s what we talk about is not a it is not a fuel. It is an issue that I don’t if it is from an economics research firm.
[00:05:09.440] – Tim & Tristan
And that’s as far as I can go with that at the moment. That’s as far away from fuel as it’s ever. So but it’s but it’s something that, you know, the advice that I’ve given to clients. So obviously I consult with clients and the advice I’m giving clients right now. And I would give anybody who didn’t pay me for this because I don’t think this is particularly brilliant, is we should all be planning for this to be much, much longer, planning for the worst and hoping for the best and doing what we can to try and capture demand and capture a fair share of business in the places where it does exist.
[00:05:42.380] – Tim
But assume that this is going to go on for a long time and then if it doesn’t, that’s a win. But if you assume this is all going to be fine in Q2 of next year and it’s not, you’re going to be in a much worse position. So the right thing to do was assume that the nightmare scenario is true and then anything good that happens is an automatic. But I don’t mean to be negative.
[00:06:04.910] – Tim
Sorry. No, please.
[00:06:06.080] – Adele
Are you sorry they can’t wait that long, especially if you’re in a hard in urban area like New York City. There, you know, people if things don’t start to come in enough to at least break even, you know, there are a lot of people are just not going to make their right long, hard work. And all the years that they put in and employing so many people, you know, from the advisory says that there are five hundred and eleven hotels in New York that really is supposedly it’s actually quite a bit more.
[00:06:43.430] – Adele
But that’s what we would consider, you know, a hotel. And, you know, people say it’s going to be 20 percent down, but it would be much more.
[00:06:58.730] – Loren
I mean, it’s sad to see the notification that Hilton Times Square was shut down permanently. We’re going to see an obituary list continue to grow, you know, and we’re in budget season. Maybe that’ll get changed in the world. Now that we have the world that we’re in. It’ll be a budget week. It’ll be one hundred. But but part of the consideration that I know that we’re including in what we’re doing is a sad deterioration format.
[00:07:26.150] – Loren
Who do we know is financially stable still within our organization to maintain their presence in market? And I say to that also is I’ve also challenged all the initiatives that I’m working with on what is your perception of minimum threshold game they look at. They’re still measuring things in my mind, all formating of profitability margins.
[00:07:45.260] – Loren
I got to say right now, I think it’s worth survivability options and margins as to what is your base threshold of operational capability, what are your lesser degrees? To quote the matrix, we can survive at lesser levels of living. You know what? What is it that we’re doing that we can survive that to maintain not having a dead box sitting on a corner of a street? And what does that really translate to not about a profitability margin, but about sustainability?
[00:08:11.420] – Loren & Tim
How can you can you refinance your fixed over you get your funding, your finances? At this point, is there those things need to be considered now, you know, or have you take over in desperation? You one one property owner that I know has already committed the fact that they are taking a profit. Again, I can’t screw this up a little bit, but they are taking the they are taking the property out of service for most of next year.
[00:08:31.740] – Tim
They are actually accelerating a capital reinvestment plan that they had stands for and doing the refurbishment of the property and updates for the property. Now, because their belief is occupancy is going to be sufficiently low. They’re going to draw on capital reserves that they have to do them to refer to do with the reinvestment from that perspective, in hopes that when they’re ready to reopen the door in some bigger way in twenty, twenty two, the demand will have come back to a place where I don’t want to listen with their are.
[00:09:05.960] – Tim
They are lucky to be in that position for sure. For sure.
[00:09:09.650] – Tristan
What the how much of a deal that would have got from that from the construction industry as well. Let’s let’s be honest. It’s not just the hotel industry that’s been hit. Some pockets of the construction industry did very well, I would say that there are still hotels actually being built right now.
[00:09:22.970] – Tristan
You know, understandably, you’re at the point of no return if you don’t just give up halfway through building a hotel, if it’s been that much investment put into it. So if you are lucky in that situation, it might be quite a wise investment to the to be going down the that. Now she might say to yourself, well, you’re not necessarily saving yourself money. You actually perhaps losing money and and getting a better deal out of it.
[00:09:53.090] – Loren
Well, I’ll tell you, it’s strange to say that we have two cases. One that justifies. Exactly. You’re saying there’s a hotel here in downtown Fort Myers, Florida, that was near completion and they’re supposed to be opening next month. Finally, after a lot of mitigation, a lot of issues, lots of problems, anything. But they’re committed to getting it open. There’s just no demand there. Connect to the conference center. They just spent millions upgrading the conference center.
[00:10:15.650] – Loren
But then up the road in Punta Gorda, a massive development was being done. The city gave up their most prized parcel of land. It was a corner slot by the bridge on the water overlooking the Gulf, a huge tract of land.
[00:10:28.850] – Loren
They got all the concrete up and now it’s dead.
[00:10:30.920] – Loren
stone-Cold for three years. Stop there. Six massive cranes sitting over it and they’re all dead. And I don’t know why they’re going to come down, whether they just have a full at least they got a finished with or what. But that whole thing dead the whole economy is going to be based on that is the hub for that growth and that whole market and it’s just dead stop.
[00:10:48.470] – Tristan
It’s going to work.
[00:10:50.150] – Tim
So since we’re doing the litany of bad news, if anyone saw the unemployment numbers that came out this morning, by far the hardest hit industry, as will shock no one here, was, in fact lodging and hospitality market, which is what unemployment is. Twenty five is down twenty five percent. You know, it’s the largest job losses, you know, and the one that’s by far the hardest hit. So this is a deal to go back to what I was saying before and I agree with you, I think there’s going to be a lot of people who are in a lot of trouble.
[00:11:21.950] – Tim
I think the reality is we have to we have to look at that with clear, cold eyes and say if that is in fact the case, what do we do to, as Warren says, survive? What do we do to get through or what do we do to make sure we’re putting ourselves and our people in the best position for the long term? And some of those some of those are some very hard, very difficult choices. But I don’t think it’s realistic to assume that there’s going to be a big boost in demand for those kinds of properties immediately.
[00:11:54.530] – Loren
We have a unique opportunity with Richard, with us, because Richard’s been behind. He’s been in the room where it happens.
[00:12:02.710] – Loren
So everybody’s not a Hamilton fan. Sorry, you’ve been behind us.
[00:12:08.090] – Loren
You’ve been behind those high level discussions back in the day when things hit you, when 9/11 hit, when 08 hit and from America or any brand. You can generalize that, I would say. But what kind of level discussions are going on back there that are like, how is the long term play of this? What is the scope of what they’re considering in that process that says, OK, this is our forecast, this is the reality? What are some mitigation things that we can start planning for now?
[00:12:33.320] – Loren
What are some fixes so that we can start building with? And then explain the universe to give two examples, just say I’m not the one responsible, you really like to put people on the spot.
[00:12:48.730] – Loren
How are you able to question how often do I get to ask, what are the guys it was like always looking for, oh, my God, he runs like the world.
[00:12:56.870] – Ben
I think you find out the girls. Well, Richard is unsentenced. Those statistics you mentioned down the unemployment. What’s the situation in the US with the payment protection paycheck protection program that they the unemployment statistics, despite the PP payments coming through the people, the payments have ended so that they’re beginning a new program where the federal government is giving three hundred dollars a week to the states and the states can match up.
[00:13:29.170] – Tim
Can I have an extra one hundred dollars? I believe it is to make four hundred dollars a week. I think there’s about 40 states, 38 states or something like that that have participated in that. But that’s that is the situation I have.
[00:13:41.320] – Loren
You know that the PPP is a great program. We have a gentleman down here that owns a metal roof. We have all these seven hundred thousand dollar catrambone at one point two million dollar house straight from the account that he put his money in. My pocket was the only money in that account that he pulled it from.
[00:13:58.150] – Tristan
So the feds are kind of talking to him, as they rightfully should, right. To live and he can’t live with that one. Puts a million dollars. I mean, I know I certainly could.
[00:14:10.090] – Dan
And we put people on it. The interesting thing is the you know, the star numbers include close don’t include the close property right there, artificially inflated for for so many of these properties. Come on back online. If they ever do, you’re going to end up seeing a dip there as well. But the thing that concerns me more so than the management companies, and that is the actual ownership and the default of all the loans that are about to happen.
[00:14:42.460] – Dan
There was an article recently that said that the CMBS loans, which back a lot of our hotel loans, is looking at a default rate of something like thirty nine. Forty percent. So that’s where you’re going to see the pain. Yeah, well, for. Well, and I’m the I’m the guy that search for this, I’m the guy who started this downward conversation, I need to the dogs down any more. I guess we be trying to be more positive about that.
[00:15:09.920] – Richard
I think the one hundred room hotels, they still need help. But to me, it’s a think tank like this can try to figure out how, you know, marketing and digital and all that can try to not fix, because if you’re a thousand room hotel, you’ve got a lot of rooms to fill. But, you know, I think there’s some forces that are talking about they’re trying to do a lot more of those small weddings. Certainly it’s probably a lot more work for 10, 10 person weddings than one one hundred first weddings.
But those are the things that I think that everybody’s sort of got to figure out. How do you move into this other world while we sort of, you know, it’s a smoke and mirrors or glue or tape or some kind of solution. But that’s that’s where I think we are. Or at least as a consultant, that’s my job, to try to help people try to figure out how do you get to that so you can at least make your payments and keep a few employees on and things like that.
Well, the first thing I am coming with everybody is if it’s only 50 percent occupancy and 50 percent favorability, I want to be on the side that lives. So if I have to take business from everybody else to be that 50 percent to survive by having taken somebody else’s business, and that’s our part of our strategy, Bill, is or where can we take business from those that might be taking business from us or competing with business for us?
I wish I was going to shoot myself in the foot all the time and, you know, not not realizing the you know, the world has changed. And, you know, one of the articles that Robert had in his list was going back to cancellation fees and non-refundable rates in a world where, you know, that that doesn’t exist anymore. And the airlines who are the authors of that. Right. Have to have understood that that’s not something that they can continue, at least for the foreseeable future.
So I think that one thing we should not be doing is ending their their flexible policy. And they’re going to start having you people non-refundable. And Menal starting October 1st.
And I wonder if they’re going to see less occupancy than that. And I was going to say, I bet I I bet there are a lot of franchises, the franchise sales folks right now who are making calls on a lot of IHG properties saying, hey, guess what we’re going to do is keep giving guests flexibility because it’s the right thing to do. And I think there’s going to be a lot of owners who are going to say, talk to me more about this, because, you know, they this sounds like something they’re trying to do for one set of their ownership.
Who’s upset about the fact that they’re losing out on those fees. But there’s a far bigger set of ownership, like I need to put some heads in beds. And if I don’t get this flexibility, they’re not going to come here.
So, you know, they always have the option of simply not offering a prepaid non-refundable rate. They can just for one way or another to the best rate of the day.
And that’s it. But they and also the consumer has a right to choose the recovery and not the prepay rate. But if the hotel says, you know what, it would really mean the world to me to be able to know that you’re really actually coming and I’ll give you 20 percent of that regular rate that I would have given to anybody else if you are committed to me, because I need to know that I can pay my bills. Yeah. And it’s it’s it’s up to the consumer to choose what they plan and what what you know, what the what the right conditions are unique.
I think they’re trying to longet that booking window. We’ve seen these really, really short booking windows. Right. So they’re trying to incentivize people to book a little bit farther in advance. So you’re not sweating bullets. One day I’m wondering if you’re going to pick up five rooms or 50 rooms. I mean, that’s I mean, it’s been destroying most of our hotels operationally. I mean, we’ve done to a routine where you just expect a lot of the same day pick up.
But it’s really a hard thing to manage at the hotel. So anything you can do to spread it out, get them on books a little bit. Centers are great.
But again, this is this is the consumer world that we’re living in now. You know, this this is this is the choice that we’ve given consumers. And to change it again so soon while this is going on, it’s a it’s a risky move.
I’m mean, especially as your and I apologize for coming in for one second, but especially if your market becomes a hot spot the day before the. Yes, exactly.
What’s the exact point I was just about to make here for here in the UK, we’ve had we’ve had huge scrambles of people who’ve flown out of country. They’ve gone to France. And then the government has said. Yeah, Monday, front cover cases of Rigzin, so Monday you’re going to have to quarantine for two weeks you come back.
So, you know, thousands of people who’ve gone on vacation over France are thinking, oh, my God, I need to get back. And there was just a mad scramble of people trying to get back in before the deadline.
People could go back to work and not miss I’m not sorry and actually miss the two weeks quarantine that came in. It’s so there’s no there’s not a chance if you’re going to if you’re then going to say you like, take France, for example. So, yeah, we’re going to have known council policies. Good.
Look, we’re not going to let you know if I were in, let’s say, Myrtle Beach or one of those locations that is really attracting a lot of visitors and getting up to a hundred percent occupancy we can get.
Do you really want that to collapse just before and have you know, and lose 10 percent, 20 percent of your reservations at the last minute? It would be nice. You’re in that wonderfully luxurious position that very few hotels room to offer them.
But as a brand, why quality? I don’t know if it makes sense, but I can understand that they want to give flexibility to those new hotels that have those circumstances where they want to not fall apart a day or two in which which I fully understand.
I just always go back to if you do what’s right for the customer in the long run, you’re putting yourself in a better position. And if you’re doing what’s right for the operational stability of the hotel and when I mean operational stability of, you know, we’re going to lose a couple of points or 10 points on the slide, and this is going to be unpopular with a lot of people who watch the show, I’m sure, because I’m incredibly sympathetic to the realities you’re dealing with.
But you have to do what’s right for the guest in the long run, because that’s how you’re going to build a sustainable business as we as we lived through this period. If you really quickly.
Yeah, I mean, that’s that’s the place where things get back into a very intense and it’s a tough choice. Right. It’s a very tough place. It is the difference between you paying your mortgage and not obviously do what you have to do to pay your mortgage. I don’t want anyone to misunderstand that. However, once you know you can pay your mortgage, then you’ve got to do what’s absolutely best for the guest, because that’s the only way you can put yourself in the longer term.
And I also agree that it’s just too soon. Yes, it is.
And so taste what might be coming up in the future between Jean Schmidt and Stephanie Smith in the battle of the metasearch discussion.
You have an event for this? I’m actually think we should have a special event for this Kahnawake. Yeah, it does.
It’s going to be a fun one. But it was it was made of it.
I would like to ask because I do have Richard with us and stuff reports is is the brains missing an opportunity by not expanding on their points, rewards, points, incentives, points, values? Stephanie, you made the point that the corporate level or the points driven traveler is not really traveling and there is valid it’s valid point, of course, but by the same token, it is a tool that nobody else has, and that is a reward value relationship that you can expand upon by having that with them.
Is Brand having the possibility that it may be by saying, do this, we’ll give you an extra well, double your points or Addicks? Because that function, I’ll tell you honestly right now in one brand, not Mariotte, but in one brand doesn’t exist. You can’t do that unless you’re a new opening hotel that you can do point person unless you do as a package, which makes it really painful because anyway. But so what are you all thought?
Is that a missed opportunity or is that just something that just doesn’t seem like a useful tool to me?
I think I guess I have to give it some more thought. I will say what I have seen from on the point side of things is the redemption rate for a lot of those hotels in those destination markets. The redemption rate for using your points has been higher than normal. Where that hurts hotels is for you to be able to get your higher. Richard Stefan. I mean, you got to be able to get your higher redemption rate. You have to have a higher occupancy.
So, so many of these hotels are getting hammered with their redemptions, but they’re not getting there. They’re not getting a decent ADR for it because their occupancy isn’t where it needs to be to balance that out.
Right. Right. Well, I think, Richard. Well, I don’t. I’ve got I mean, I don’t think business travel, I know we’re not talking about business, but to try to lure people to do things they don’t want. It’s sort of like the old days we said must stay for I think people really thought we could get someone to stay for nights instead of three. But one thing, we were looking for people that want to stay for nights.
So I don’t I don’t know that you can overly incent. I don’t know at what point in time that tipping point, when you do it, gets people’s attention. I think they claim that you get to 20 percent. Most people don’t get too excited, blah, blah, blah. So and then I think there are those people maybe they can look in their databases and see the kind of people that have been motivated in the past by deals. But a lot of people, if you’re scared, you’re scared.
I don’t think I don’t think points are going to I don’t think doubling my points right now. I’m not going to get on a plane. I’m not I don’t. You can play on a lot of airlines right now for twenty five dollars. Yeah. You can’t get manouver for twenty five dollars.
I’m not looking for twenty four anywhere, so I don’t there is a point I don’t like for you to last to see inelasticity or whatever, but there’s a I just don’t think you can lower the price or lower the points or double the points enough for certain people.
You could probably move the needle a little bit but not a lot in my opinion.
Some of the rates have been running. Mariotte had a pretty healthy Bonnefoy offer that they grand final note two months ago and we actually saw a bigger pick up on that bond, more promotion than we’ve ever had on any other brand specific promo. And I can’t really speak to why it performed better, but most of the hotels did see a higher pick up rate, which kind of goes against the grain of what you kind of what you see and what you see who is traveling, but.
But know did it pick up the entire level of the occupancy of the hotel or just that one raid plan, maybe, maybe people picked that raid plan in a different plan that they might have chosen another one.
Yeah, but they get that from you. And I had a bit of an existing bond, one member before all this happened.
So, yeah, I think probably for the whole hotel because because sometimes I’m just moving something from one package to another.
Yeah. The other thing about some of these people that have a lot of points, I’m going to make some generalities here, more likely they’ve been in business a long time. More likely they’re not young people. And that’s the person that probably doesn’t want to travel. I think I think, again, you’ve got to go back to trying to figure out. I would think most of the people traveling today are younger because the older people are worried about, you know, 81 percent of the deaths or people 65 and older.
So I think if you can again, is Marryat really or Hilton got a bunch of 25 year olds that are traveling. Maybe that’s why Airbnb is you know, six months ago I thought those were not going to do anything. Now they’re starting to ramp up much more so than hotels. Is that because younger people are traveling and they’re not? And that’s what they seem to like anyway, and that’s who’s traveling? I, I think I think you’ve got to get into the age group, the demographics a lot and some of the psychographics, but a lot of the demographic start to put some context to all the stuff we’re talking about, because making it one generic thing is probably a little unfair because this thing’s so age.
Buki, I know the math probably doesn’t work on this from the from the Brangwyn perspective, but it might be a good opportunity to build a brand and build loyalty, to go back to the, you know, the people who have the points and who have really good product and ready to go. I’ll give you an example. I’m in New York now when I get out of quarantine and my plan is to book a hotel. I have a ton of IHT points.
I have a ton of MARRYAT one, but they’re charging the same or more for redemption as they do during peak periods. So why am I going to do that? So it’s not making me more loyal to that brand and not only want to stay there, I might try a hotel that I’ve never tried before. So they lose that aspect of it. Clearly, they want to get paying customers in there.
I understand that there is an opportunity to go build the brand and build a really good point because the people who were traveling, who have all those points feel they were charging once a month, twice a month, spent a lot of time in hotel rooms. They’re not traveling right now, but they’ve got all these points. So they’ve been waiting all summer for that opportunity to travel because let’s admit it, all of us are sick of sitting at home. And so it in fact, case in point, I’ll tell everybody, by the way, here’s my wife and I’s anniversary this weekend, 16th anniversary is for me.
And so we are taking a trip into the drive market, Omaha, Nebraska, not too far away. And I’m using coins for it. Right. So now all those points that I had sitting around, I’m not business traveling. So, yeah, I’m going to use those points now all of a sudden. But here’s what’s interesting about that. I’m going to the hotel that I wouldn’t have normally gone to. So that has that opportunity now from that hotel to become my go to hotel next time I’m heading back to town.
So even though that may be the case, there’s still an opportunity, I think, to get some loyalty for people who before we’re going to the drive market, they weren’t going into Omaha. Instead I was going to Miami or whatever it may be. But now I can become a client of that hotel and a returning visitor on a future trip.
You normally have an awesome voice, but today you have an exceptionally stellar is it just me?
But he’s got that I need it. I mean, he’s getting ready to do the voice overs for commercials.
Now, I want to keep that voice with us from straight from South Africa, Stuart Butler, Stuart Maintenace, Richard Farar.
Richard for our Stuart Butler.
Yes, I know. So I’ve been keeping up with you guys and direct everything you said that was wrong.
Oh, well, thank God.
I think I want to backtrack to that earlier comment. We have that kind of time.
I will go back to that conversation we have about the prepaid rates, too, because another point to think about with those is there’s a big difference between a prepaid non-refundable rate that you’re doing through your hotel direct website and a prepaid rate that goes through an okay, because now, as Tim gave the example, if you have also the day before my arrival, that area turns into a hot spot. Well, now what happens if they booked direct with me?
I can be proactive and contact them and say, hey, remember that prepaid rate that you had? You know what? We’re going to forgive that. We’re going to rebook you whatever. I have control over that. If that was done through Hotels.com necessarily, they’re controlling my narrative for me and I want to own that.
So can you just say, Adrian, for me to go work is an elevator?
I know I said it was a nibbler.
So I think also a couple of the points with this is I can tell you that we’ve had one recent success story. The gifts, the cards, it’s been an old conversation, it’s something we’ve talked about earlier on in the process of getting people to purchase now and potentially aspire to staying with you in the future. One of my clients did a very aggressive 50 percent additional value from 50 dollar increments up, and the cap was the thousand bucks. So technically, you buy a thousand and give fifty dollars worth of value for it and.
What it did do, which was really nice, was, to your point subdistricts, the book window. And this is in Canada. So everything’s closed and candidates drive market only Canada, even though they are getting some certain countries that they are allowing in, it’s really pretty much domestic only, but there’s a lot of domestic travel for them. People in Toronto who have been frustrated with their on and off quarantining Vancouver is going exceptionally well and people want to go there.
So they’ve been very successful at targeting those markets and offering this gift card program they’ve got. They had their best August even year over year, and August is one of the better months. So but that was from a from a purchase point of view that wasn’t from an actual in the month. That was from from actual bookings and revenue. Gend know gift cards are cash. You know, the value proposition is a is a gift. But the actual purchases for the month of August were better than last year because of the program.
So there are ways to inspiringly connect to people in the hopes that go. And also, I’d like to add to it this past week when we try to get away for a few days, for the first time, get out of the house. And we did Airbnb, actually, we did our very own about it. Oh, right. Oh, dear Lauren, how dare I know you.
But I can see why it’s better than what we offer as hotels. The density of people. You have to engage the hallways. The elevators didn’t have to do any of that, didn’t have to share common space. I had my own kitchen. We did our own cooking. We didn’t go out or anything like that. We walked out to the beach, which is what we wanted to do. We had our own space on the beach, which is what we wanted.
And that was a value proposition because we could talk directly with the host and get all the details of what are you doing for cleaning? What do you really have, where is it that this is at and so forth. And really the hotels just don’t offer that at the level that we keep saying they need to.
Ladies, welcome to this week vacation rental market.
And I think there’s a there’s a false narrative going on about that because we keep seeing reports that vacation rental is recovering way faster than hotels.
And I think it’s warped by the destinations that are recovering, not necessarily the type of accommodations, because if you look at where the or the major markets where people are comfortable with it.
Yes, exactly. Yeah. I don’t think it’s a choice. And we we just I was actually right before this. The reason I was late is we’re finishing up the analysis on our latest sentiment’s study. And one of the questions we ask and keep in mind, we’re in Myrtle Beach market. A lot of the people with polling coming to destinations like that, which tend to have a high percentage of vacation rental type units as well. But we started asking people, what have they traveled yet?
And we asked in a way we said, have you traveled since March 30th? Twenty twenty. All right. Any guesses what percentage of people travel between then and now? What would you say?
Answer twenty. Twenty five percent.
All right. Now, let me ask you this. How many hours of travel of the just now. Just the first time now. But you have travel right now.
Who else is traveling? He’s going to Los Angeles graveled Stefanie’s travel, more than 50 percent of us to travel, and yet we’re all sitting and saying now seven percent of people travel temps that we actually just hit the tipping point. We had over two thousand people respond. 50 percent of people that responded is self self reporting study have traveled since March. So we’re getting to that.
50 percent of people have traveled since March 30th.
How do you define travel overnight?
That was that was the question. Have you traveled? And then we broke it down and said, what type of accommodation did you travel and what was the reason to travel? And we broke down the reason between things like I just needed a vacation or a break or a funeral or a wedding. It was a bunch of stuff. So that report’s going to come out next week and break down. But we asked what type of accommodation did you choose? In the vast majority of people?
I forget the actual percentage, but it was more than the rest combined was hotel motel, resort vacation rentals was was a lot smaller. So I think what we’re seeing in the data is that because Expedia and folks like that saying, well, we’re seeing more growth relative in vacation rentals than we are in hotels, it’s more of a situation of there’s a lot more density of hotels that aren’t seeing recovery. So as a statistical percentage, we get it’s going to look like bigger than it is.
But I don’t see the big increase in vinyl sales. Correct. Right. Right. Small no big impact.
But I agree with you on that. And I think also, too, with that being said, we believe the statistical numbers and the destination visit beaches down here are gold bars, gold or any drive market for us right now is gold. They’re not going to midtown. No place in the middle of nowhere to go get away from everything they’re going to someplace they can do what we did.
But I don’t know. Some people are going to small town. We’re seeing the number of people that say they attracts intending to travel in the next 30, 60 or 90 days. Small towns is up there, right? It’s right below beaches. Oh, cool. Cities are waiting.
There’s no beach near Grand Junction, Colorado. And the whole this whole town is up substantially year over year for this and a lot of small towns up and going.
Going back to the conversation earlier that I was listening to about the younger folks that are traveling, not everyone on the call knows this, but my son took his first step into hospitality this summer. He’s 14 years old to just old enough to work in South Carolina. So I kicked him out of the nest and said, you need to go on, you’re living. And he at fourteen, right? That’s what we do, really get married.
And then at a local resort lodge resort, like a four hundred unit property is a great experience.
And I mean, he has grown matured so much in eight weeks. I know it’s it’s the best thing we’ve ever done with him. And he loves it and he loves serving people. He’s got that hospitality bug. He’s a real innkeeper and I love it. We have this conversation just a couple of days ago where he said, you know, Dad, I’ve noticed something. The number of weird issues that I was seeing early on have stopped. And at the beginning he was every day he’d come back with some dude, threw a chair off of the balcony, or someone threw a bottle off of the balcony or someone dumped a bunch of chicken wings in the pool.
Looks like just the crazy stuff we deal with in dealing with the public every day. That was a problem. There was a guy like tried to threaten to beat him up one day. It was just it was insane. He said it’s really calm down. Like most days are pretty. There’s no major events going on. And this is a large, full hotel. And I said, so what do you think that is? He goes, well, I’ve noticed something.
The people that are traveling now are a good bit older than the people that were traveling earlier on. And he said and I think, too, and this is an insight this is a proud dad. And he said, I think to the people that were traveling earlier were crazy people.
They were risk because they were traveling in covid.
I was like, this is a brilliant insight that a 14 year old kind of figured out on his own. Right. It was younger people that were risk takers were traveling. But I really think and in places like Malta Beach, places like Panama City, a probably further ahead on the recovery timeline. But if we know now that 50 percent of people have traveled since March 30th, twenty twenty, we are now in the mainstream of travelers. I’ve talked to so many people that are traveling this coming weekend for the first time.
I think we’re getting back to that point where travel is not such a fearful thing that it was. People are realizing that places don’t spread covid people do. And if you travel responsibly, you can have a great vacation as long as you don’t go and be crazy and do the things you used to do prior to Cobert. So it gives me a lot of hope. I think I’d say that really, just as an optimistic look at the future and we’ve seen a lot of market.
Beginning to pick up another two weeks, they’ll be talking about redclaw index and proportion. I can’t wait for the media to yield this asset.
That is the amount of sane, if you like it everyday. You know, places don’t kill people. People think, you know, that’s it. That’s the insight for me.
But I also, as a caveat to the whole Airbnb, Yarbo and all this stuff, their Achilles heel is the cancellation policies. They’re brutal, absolutely brutal.
They’re there’s a no refund two weeks out and so forth. And they’re rock solid on that because it comes from the platform, not necessarily the host. And it makes it very painful. The only reason why we were willing to go and commit when we knew the weather situation was going to deter to it was two days away. So it wasn’t like we’re going to have any major issues are going to be able to get there. But if I was stretching something out onto a long term reservation, I wouldn’t do it because of the cancellation policies.
I’d much rather be able to call a hotel and be able to say this is a situation. So far, there’s no negotiate out of it. Either it’s a book or something. These guys are rock solid. They don’t mess with that stuff.
They’re like a lot of when you went out of the hotel or something like that, it’s often for a week or four nights or something like that. Other hotel you can just easily get one night, as you were saying.
You actually I agree with you, but a lot of hotels aren’t realizing that and they’re making you do multiple bookings, which puts you into jeopardy of having to change rooms. Even we looked at a couple of hotels and flat out we said, look, we like to stay for X days. And they’re like, well, we own that. We have a three nights stay, but then you’re going to have to do another three nights stay. And it’s like, well, can’t we just keep the one?
Well, luckily, as we can keep you the room, but we’re not certain. Whoa, whoa. I’m packing for three days and I clean the place and I’m safe and I don’t want to shovel it all up and move to another.
It’s no more difficult than it needs to be right now, you know, visite. I think I think a lot of hotels they should have adjusted already, there are a lot of their policies, but they shouldn’t be putting more restrictions on people. They should be giving people choice. For example, housekeeping is one of those areas where we see a spectrum of preference. Right. And everyone’s different. Some people don’t want any housekeeping. They don’t want anyone coming in their room.
Some people want extra housekeeping, you know, so it’s about understanding each individual guest and what their specific needs are and then catering to those. But it’s not a completely arbitrary hurdles or friction in the process.
It’s just going to add years and hospitality professionals. That’s what we ought to be able to do to be able to. How do you serve the needs of the guests on that?
Guys, that’s great. Definitely. We want to serve the guests and we’re all about doing that. But the problem that we’ve got a lot of these hotels is resources. Again, you go back to the original. You don’t know whether people are going to cancel. You say we should have thought everything out there. And you’re left with a few people, especially with smaller independent hotels. You’re left with a few people who are wearing so many different hats right now that they don’t know whether the criminal going.
So I can completely understand and empathize. It shouldn’t be like that. And we’d like to have it where we’d have it. You know, we can all of these policies and things like that. The reality is the hotels are hurting that much. In some cases, it’s just not possible.
Well, speaking of full disclosure, I work with a number of independent properties, small properties. I mentioned one of my very good clients many, many times, which is for properties that total one hundred rooms, 106 rooms. And they’ve worked out specific things with their with their employees and the like of who is on call in the life. And folks recognize that there’s going to be some housing problem. It is not a union situation. So obviously that’s where things start to get a little complicated in some markets.
But they’ve been very clear with their teams about know, look, we know we’re going to have demand on this weekend and we want to make sure we have people available. We know we’re not going to have this weekend. But if something changes, know who’s available to be on call and they’re finding ways to work through that operationally. It’s it’s you’ve got to you’ve got to think about the things that we used to do six months ago, a year ago are not the way you’re going to get through the next six months or a year.
You have to come up with situations that work for the reality of your property, your market, your area, because that’s the only way you’re going to get through.
And some of say don’t think about the housekeeping thing. If you give people a choice in 70 percent of people say, I don’t want daily housekeeping that has saved you so much time. Yeah, we’ve got some hotels that have gone completely to only clean at checkout. And there’s a there’s a fee for that. So it’s it’s again, it’s about setting expectations for the guests. This isn’t the same as the last time you said that hotel because there’s a global pandemic going on.
Here’s what’s different and why and why we’re doing it is to protect you and protect our staff. If you have that narrative, most people are pretty understanding about it, but have the conversation up front so that we’re not surprising them later. You know, we always used to talk on the show and in the hospitality industry about surprising the guests and surprise and delight. Was that that cliche that you don’t want to surprise the guests right now? That’s the last thing they want.
They need stability. They need certainty because there’s so much uncertainty. We’ve got to clear in our communication from the very beginning.
Yeah, I can think of a certain pair of men’s underwear that surprised the living daylights out me. I mentioned my one and only stay in a hotel that I found.
So yeah, I didn’t appreciate it. I’m not surprised with milblog context that started.
Just leave the baby. Yeah, that’s a good idea. You have to listen to three years ago, I think, and find the full story of that three and a half hours into the ten hour show that we did just go back, watch every episode starting in Episode one.
And eventually you hear that.
I think it’s what it’s what Lohan made me mindbender before we catch on the whole, like litigation back and forth with lawyers and people, people just talking about people wearing different hats.
And so perhaps I was on a call with a GM of a hotel in the UK who was it was late at night. So the property doing his cigarettes. It’s over the weekend while delivering food to rooms. And he I was on them. He was on his mobile at the in and is just give me two seconds to put in my pocket for seconds. We did I was like, oh hey Julie then went back to his room, progress back up and continue the conversation.
So it’s, I mean it’s necessary, it’s admirable and it’s sort of the spirit of hospitality of everybody just doing what needs to be done to keep the doors open. And that was in the UK. And I imagine the similar things are happening in the US as well.
I have a DSM who I who I had a call with a couple of days ago who said it can be pushed back by ten minutes. They said, I’m still cleaning out. A couple of extra rooms, and I’m not done yet. So, yeah, they were pitching in as a housekeeper. I mean, again, you do what you need to do, right? It’s it’s it’s in the spirit.
Everyone in you don’t get that call because we get a good shoulder workout.
I say animal terms, but I know it’s more specific instances.
Sometimes the wrong people were let go and I have no opinion on that.
So I may need to know then.
Everyone looks like it’s just they’ve got it right.
So I didn’t understand that. When you speak in Swahili, then I don’t to one of the hotel operations.
It was a natural progression to say we keep our top end.
People are officers, even though people don’t do the work that they’re now asked to do, they’re resigned to doing it if they want to maintain a paycheck. The people that did it best, unfortunately, may have been let go. And I know each circumstance is different and sometimes we’re just certain ways we could keep certain people. There’s unions and everything else to have a mix of all these things that go on with all this. So I understand there’s a lot of complexities by the general statement that I make of it.
But these people are doing it out of resignation of doing it. The really good ones that are succeeding are the ones that did it before and earned their right to be at the level that they were. And they just have to polish up the old skills and go back to it. You know, those are the genuine people. Those are the ones are getting it done. The people that rose to a level of title that didn’t work their way up the system but were given that are the ones that are struggling.
They’re the ones that now have to do what they used to just delegate and regulate, to and oversee. They weren’t the ones that were actually facilitating the process. So there is a mix that this might, out of this whole process, be a redefinition as to how to react to something like this in the future tense. How do you qualify your team that you’re keeping not based on title and position, but on performance and need? I mean, nobody’s really bringing that up in conversation because we’re in the decision right now.
And can I just point out to all the executives that are watching the show, Lance not talking about you, he’s talking about the other ones. Oh, no, no.
I think I kept waiting for him to hear the words real Americans and then say, you know, I have approved this message.
Well, there’s no question the people who are who are handling multiple roles now are moving from one department to another and and really seeing the way the whole operation run are going to have a real aspect of education. And that insight into the future, no matter what they do when they learn that their companies decades to learn cut once and cut deep, although not everybody got the message and they had this slow bleed. But I guess it’s going to take a while now.
Cut, cut once, cut deep and cut the right people is the next thing I know. Well, well.
And and what I would add to that, I mean, this is when you’re going to get good at what you do, right? I, I, I sometimes joke that in 2007 I was the best digital marketer in the hospitality industry because man, everything I did work, it was spectacular. I could do no wrong. Right. And then 2008 came along and kicked this in the teeth and I was like, oh wow. Here’s all the things I don’t know how to do and here’s all the things where we have to get better and smarter and the like.
Right. And the same thing happened in 2001. The same thing happened to other times. But it’s one of those things where this is where you learn what your guests tell you. This is where you learn how to be really good at what you do. And, you know, you’re going to come out stronger for it or you’re going to be some of those people are like, wow, I don’t like the part where I have to change linens occasionally.
Maybe this isn’t meant for me. Right. And that’s okay to go find someplace else to be happy.
Tim, you just tell a marketing conference.
You walked into the room, the red carpet rolled out, and there’s people throwing rose petals in front of you. Now I know why you thought you walked on water.
That’s what it was. I didn’t know. I’ve no, I didn’t think I walked on water and I thought my feet didn’t get wet. No, I’m kidding. That’s a joke.
That’s no, but it’s one of those things when it’s easy, when all boats are rising with the tide. Right. That’s when times are tough. It’s when you actually learn how to do your job very well and you either learn how to do your job very well. You have to find something else to do.
Yeah. That’s why you went into a consultancy, right? When? In 2011, my friend. Twenty eight. I want to expand and then decided when when he said when he would you quote this said when you built the ship we built the shipwreck.
I mean I know Stuart loves using that Paul Aurélio.
I’m going to add to it that that ships are good in the water but not with water in them. So by the same statement, you know, all the boats that keep the water out, they float when they go to the top.
These analogies, again, too much fun boats and Tim’s feet.
And it’s just, you know, there’s a lot of. Going on here and nobody’s mentioned about flying under bridges yet, I’m sure that’s going to happen. Going on you all on the water and whatever else you’re talking about, people doing in different roles and, you know, tell you you’re talking about a role that you they’re going to be if you’re the kind of person who doesn’t want to do a role because you overtly or privately think it’s beneath you, hospitality probably isn’t the right industry.
That’s exactly right. Exactly. Without wanting to sound too accurate, spiritual, you’ve got to have quite a servant’s heart for this industry, I think, and want to want to serve you to want to surprise and delight, but go beyond the expectations of your guests.
And if if you if you feel something’s below you, then. Yeah. Again, I just I think it’s I think the people who are suited to this industry are going to shine. And I think they’ll probably have a better appreciation of the work that the people they used to manage do. And when we eventually get the resurgence in the industry bounces back, they might say, well, have a habit of the break, have a longer break, had a longer lunch work.
So that’s the master, you know.
You know, when might when the owner of the library hotel collection, Henry Allen, hired me 20 years ago?
He didn’t say, Adele, you’re going to be over sales and marketing and I want you to make sales calls and do this and do this and do the other thing he just said, hey. This is our business. It’s your responsibility to make it as successful as it can possibly be. And that was the goal and that gave me complete freedom to say whether I needed to make sales calls or I needed to focus on the guest experience in order to be a magnet for a new business as opposed to begging for new business.
And that kind of flexibility, when you hire people and you know that your position is your task may be to hand the keys to somebody. Your task may be to make sure their baggage gets through the rooms or clean their rooms or whatever. But if you tell people, you know, think about it as though this is your business and your job is make sure that everybody’s happy so that they go out into the world and say great things about you, whatever it takes in order to get the business.
That’s what we need to do. And and and if you hire the kind of people that say, yes, that’s what I want. I wanted to do the right thing for the guests so that there are super satisfied and they’ll tell all their friends to go online, etc., then you have no problems because they’re happy to do other things because that’s where their target. And you’re right, if you don’t feel that it’s an honor and a privilege to contribute to people’s lives, make people’s lives better.
People have had a rough time. They need a break. This is a big relief from all the stress of this of this virus in quarantine and lockdown situations all over the place. They want to connect with a lot. And if their part is in the right place, you call a disturbance. I just call it trying to be nice to people, kind of people making people happy. You’re not going to have any problems, people are going to be happy to move from one one to another, whatever it takes.
That’s it. Everybody should come into the hospitality.
And it’s it’s funny when I when I start with new hotels, I’ve been this week super quick. When I start with new hotels, we frequently would do an exercise, will reduce some sentiment analysis on the reviews that they got on social media sites, on TripAdvisor, on places like that, on Expedia and the like. And the number one thing that comes up again and again and again, both positive and negative, is Stass, right? You know, there’s a lot of beautiful buildings in this industry.
There are a lot of beautiful spaces in this industry, but the memorable stay is get tied back to the people and tied back to this person, took a really, really good care of me. This person did a really great job. Or the front desk, the front desk agent was a nightmare. Or, you know, the room the guest attendant was surly or something. People remember the people that they interact with. People remember how they feel.
You know, a beautiful room is a beautiful room, but a beautiful room where you treat them like crap. People are going to say, I don’t care. This is the beautiful room. I’ll never go there again.
One way or another. People have to have something to talk about. Right. Because I go to a typical hotel room. Let’s say everything goes fine. Nothing goes wrong whatsoever. It’s a clean room. I check in, I go to my room, I sleep good. I check out. I can’t write a review about that right to review, to find something that’s really well, now I have something to talk about. If something goes really bad now, I have something to talk about.
You don’t see a lot of in between. That’s absolutely.
If you have a situation where something went wrong, but you were encouraged, people were asking you, you know, how’s everything going? And you told them. And the way they fixed it is above and beyond. You have more loyalty than if everything just went so easy. Both are true, but absolutely. You must have read one of my articles about giving people something to think about and just do that to Dean’s point.
One of the things we focus on is the way you ask the question.
So if you are only focused on trying to frame the perspective of how did how did things go with the hotel, only you’re only going to get the people who are in the extremes of that. However, if you do have a question like what was amazing about this trip? You’re going to get some type of story, and chances are, even if it’s not directly about the property, it’s selling the Y.
Of staying at that property and is still a very effective thing, so the way you frame a question can greatly change the amount of audience who will feel like they have something to contribute.
So you’re saying how awesome were we? Super awesome. Exceedingly super awesome. The awesomest ever. And by the way, speaking of awesomeness ever, you guys are all that.
But I have to run so well because Tim and I aren’t allowed to coexist.
The the agreement we made with the the NSA was that we would not be in the same spot for too long.
Oh, I think about with the devil that the NSA in the deal with Laurin Sydney, with Mr.
Two people want to know more about you and your amazing, excellent podcast and everything that you do. Where is the conflict.
You Sir. Tim, Peter dot com and computer dot com slash Comcast. And on social I’m typically Peter except for Twitter where I’m at. Peter Awesome. Don’t ask why some guy in Germany. Hi, Tim. Peter in Germany.
How are you doing today.
Great seeing you all. Hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend too, from states to ask you to do well. And I’ll see you in a week.
Let me introduce Richard Ferar up in the upper corner. Sorry for the criticism.
How are you? Thanks for joining us today. I will add one comment to that from when I used to open the round up restaurants and so forth. I used to run the dive bar that have peanut shells on the floor and the beer was slightly warm and the place was kind of and a little dusty maybe from time to time. Remember how much you try to claim you had the little Bartek tackiness on it. And we were packed and so we could try to compete with us when they built super spiffy, nifty clean bed TVs where I had maybe like a TV and nobody could really see it as you’re sitting at the bar and we’re always packed because the people the team was what made it the people noticeable to the server who you set out to table your drink dropped in front of you.
It wasn’t because you had to ask for it, because we knew what you wanted, you know, and we know what your family was doing. You and all these other places Cristero been if anyone remembers Bennigan’s bending in places that were you walked in, they try to act like they were like that. But the team wasn’t alive.
They were there. There were machine. Hi, welcome. Bennigan’s. What can I get for you. Just there were just automated. And that’s to your point about people. That’s what makes the story not the fact is being said that it’s a clean room one. OK, hey, is this place great? You know, there’s no vent there, but if you’re talking about you wouldn’t believe when this happened what they did or when they went. And I went into this is what they did for me.
Those are the stories that people love sharing, especially when it does point something goes wrong and you went and fixed it.
So well, that’s my story.
Well, I mean, it’s never the employees fault if they’re being robotic. It’s our fault also that where the where they are to support and coach the team. Right. We’re there to make sure that they’re functioning and giving their optimal performance. So if we’re not giving them the coaching that they need and the tools they need and the information they need and the inspiration that they need, then it’s completely our fault. Either we didn’t do all of those things or we hired wrong.
And pretty much there is one thing that I found that almost always works, almost always works. If they’re not sparkling sunshine on you in the interview, if they’re not trying to be people pleasers to you, they’re not going to do it for your guests. This is a critical moment. If there’s ever a moment that they’re trying to please somebody, it should be at the interview. If they’re grumpy, if they’re not smiling, if they’re not trying to give you what you need in terms of answering your questions, it’s not going to happen later either.
Forget the resume if it’s not on the list of nineteen. Stuff you’re going to reach the open government turns out to open about the we used to open about one hundred and twenty five to 150 hotels a year, courtyard’s Fairfield’s whatever. So I’d go to a number of the openings and this is sort of somewhat pre TripAdvisor. But whatever I get up and I’d try to help this staff understand how important they’re going to be to the hotel. And one of the stories I’d give is that I’d sort of say, how many letters do you think Mr.
American gets a year? And people guess what kinds of numbers? Well, it was about a little shy of a half a million letters a year. And I said, how many of you think are commenting about the wallpaper and the carpet and the chandelier? I said no, almost all of you’re talking about you people, the people that you’re the ones that life into this building. You’re the ones that make it come to life. You’re the ones that they’re going to come back for.
So when we do get away from the idea that we need hospitable people, whether it’s two years ago or two years from now, I still think that’s going to be mighty, mighty important. I always tell the story to that. Mary Joseph went to an inn two thousand years ago. Someone screwed up the reservation. That’s how they ended up in the stable. Well, we really haven’t changed a lot in two thousand years. We really, really haven’t.
And if you think back, Ford Motor didn’t exist 10 years ago. iPhones didn’t exist two thousand years ago, but traveling and hospitality did. And I contend I don’t know what’s going to get rid of our business, but I cannot fathom what that’s going to be in the next hundred years. I got to believe in the next hundred years people are still going places. There may be some virtual stuff, but I still think people will want to go.
So I think we’ve got a really cool long term, maybe not the next year, but if you want to make a career, I still think that it’s an OK business to be in.
And I do hope Mr. Marriott personally reply to all half million letters that came to it just for the hospitality of it and that personal touch.
Well, I mean, one time I did. If you ever try and shake his hand, he’ll just cripple you because of the work they had in writing all those letters.
One from the other, though, I could tell I will attest that Mr. Murray, any time I had the privilege of seeing him, wherever he was, I would never ignore anybody.
Nobody. He ignored nobody.
Well, because your in a room at some point, I mean, obviously speaking to a large room with thousands. No, but the circle of people that are around him, he would not ignore people. He was very much that person. When is the next what do we walk through? A room is some. And what these people do, he would say, I do. He did. He knew what people did. He knew what they did, what they were doing before.
He was always that kind of guy.
And it’s why he always had like thirty feet between him and you.
And I was at the Marriott headquarters. They have a really nice cafeteria and he’s down there eating with just chatting with everybody, eating down the cafeteria with all the staff and just talking with whoever. I mean, that is lunch probably took two hours because everyone had to come up and talk to him.
But I mean, he didn’t turn a person down in the cafeteria and I thought it was more than thirty feet on the restraining order.
Well, it’s a tape measure at the time that you’re there, tape that it was working for with the Taser ankle thing when they figured that out and put it on that measure, that really well, I was going to ask you guys, just because of something Lauren said about how his bar work.
Have you seen the new Applebee’s commercial where they basically overlay the tier song and they are implying that everyone at Applebee’s knows your name because it’s a neighborhood bar and grill so they know your name.
However, no matter what, they will get your order wrong.
So focus on the message you can do.
Like we definitely will know your name. We’ll get them ready to order yet.
Lauren, don’t get Lauren’s got his name badge on, though, so he wears his name. That’s right. No fear that people will forget, but I leave it upside down.
So I don’t forget my name because I’m so good with names, that’s for sure. I want to throw this in. In response to something Richard said earlier about the adaptability of hotels, I thought was an interesting article that Robert had shared with us about the usages of hotels. Ironically, there’s a statistical error in this article that refers to that people in England are the hardest working or longest people are.
It’s not people in England, people in England, but people in England and rich people, wherever they might be talking about.
They said that there’s a there’s a there’s a there’s a bad stat in there.
But besides, that bad stat has some interesting points because we have found that people are looking not because they have to travel and be there from away from their living. They actually live around the area. They need a place different than where they’re at home just to change scenery. They’re looking for good wi fi, decent desk. And then the other thing, and I want to bring this up is a question. We have that conference rooms right now and we have stages in them or we can put stages in them and so forth.
I keep proposing this, but nobody’s really picked it up yet, but one where they actually brought in the panel for presentation. It was a corporate event that they. Had to cancel, but they brought the corporate officers that were going to do the presentation to the corporate attendees who were virtual, they had a handful of people that were from the corporate office in the room. Well, space, probably distance, but they put the panel up on the stage with plenty of space podium way off to the side presentation screen and put the camera facing them and then did their corporate meeting as if it was an actual conference where people in the room they were the prospector was from the room perspective, they could see the slide deck on a separate screen.
It was a different push.
These are just adaptive ways. What do you think about all that? Is this something that we will eventually have to lean into a little bit more, saying, hey, we can be that kind of hotel for you or something?
Because, I mean, I think, Richard, you brought up about the small weddings and conferences and, you know, dining, I think was brought up in the chat about the dining opportunities with hotels, small dining and stuff like that. I mean, is this is this going to be based on what Tim said, Long-stay? Yes, I agree.
The English are the hardest working going to be when you when you add the total work time without subtracting all the tiebreaks. Yes, OK. But when you pull out all the tiebreaks, it’s half the year.
It depends on. That’s what they call ti, isn’t it.
Oh no. Lauren, listen, first of all, for specific reasons.
Sure. I think there is an opportunity there. However, the expense of doing that versus what’s available at home. I think the focus of this article of trying to be in office space for them to escape and get some quiet and some high quality is a much more likely thing than I’m willing to pay you to have a meeting room with all that I’ve set up.
So I could just have a slightly better looking background for my audience. I, I just don’t I think you’re talking about a supreme niche versus this article, which is an obvious need of scale.
I do think someone’s got the hybrid version right where some of the people will be on, some of the people will be off site. And I guess that’s a use case that would work where you have the option, you can attend it live and this is cost and or you can attend digitally. And if this cost and don’t have that event. So that might be a good use.
Well, I mean, to your point, E Tourism Summit from CANEK Travel is doing a hybrid event on October 1st here at the Loews Royal Pacific that will also have all the sessions and everything will be hybrid. So you could either have been there in person or, you know, attend all the sessions electronically. So, you know, well, that type of stuff I definitely see happening. But the specific to Lauren’s story, and I’m just picking on Lauren, but I don’t think one person is going to do it.
No, no, you’re right.
Well, you know, it’s sort of a sidebar to that. I don’t know if you saw that RSI is sort of the the I guess the outdoor sports folks or whatever you want to call it, equipment. I think they’ve shut down their corporate headquarters. So they’ve said people can work from home. They’ve been working from home. We might as well shut this baby down. So now their big dilemma is how do they rally their troops in in a setting on occasion to sort of get that comaraderie every six weeks, six months, six years, whatever.
So I think there’s lots of things that this covid thing has done, whether it’s what we were just talking about or these businesses find out, hey, we don’t need everybody all in the same room except occasionally. And then what’s that really mean? What’s that interaction look like? And maybe that’s got all kinds of ramifications to our industry directly or indirectly, business wise, or just the way we work. I mean, again, Marriott headquarters has got three thousand people or did it’s got three hundred now.
But I mean, all these things are pretty open for what’s going to happen next.
Well, and I think it’s going to bring a new demand to small meeting. So you’re going to you’re going to end up as the workforce distributes inevitably. Right. So Silicon Valley, a lot of those big players have said you can work from anywhere. Now those people are going to end up still kind of clustering in areas. You know, they’re going to make consumer decisions based on the profile of who they are and they’re going to be similar to other employees.
I think you’re going to see lots of small meetings come from this distribution of the workforce. I think you’re going to see that with more frequency.
And and this is where I think these these hotels that have maybe only a boardroom or a boardroom in another small space may actually see a good amount of demand for usage of that for small and. 18 meetings, things like that, and then I do think it will have a affect on larger annual company meetings when big meetings can come back as it’s going to be needed even more now and it’ll probably be longer duration because normally big company meetings also had a customer component to it.
Now you’re going to need multiple days just for your staff to be able to see each other because you may have departments spread geographically to where they can’t meet easily.
Also, what we’re hearing from some people is, is that they’re willing to bypass Big Brother because they’re using the corporate communication platforms. Everything is recorded. Sometimes they want conversations in what they’re doing that isn’t necessarily always by attendance or audience from other people. So there’s that possibility just to let everyone know in the chat.
We’ve been talking about the fights today as we thought we would have been next week.
But it’s going to be now. It’s happening now. Now, it seems that Stephanie has the idea about George metasearch that isn’t exactly in alignment with Dean Smith’s idea of metasearch. So we have a great polarity of discussion that I would love to bring into. I don’t know who’s the home field advantage we’re going to give to step by step the home field advantage. OK, this is going to be the the visiting contender to this. And if we could, Stephanie, if you could read it, you made this article and has some great points to it.
Not that everything’s bad about it or good or so.
Please tell me your contention to things and then we’ll let Dean have at it and then we’ll just chime in and have our own perspective on it.
OK, so I wrote this article and about metasearch and there’s a couple of caveats. I’ll tell the story. So I’ll drop the blog that I wrote into the chat, but that I primarily work with Branded Hotel to heal nicely. They have a certain at least those brands have a relationship with a third party vendor where you can run metasearch through this. These partners and I’m hearing from a lot of owners, the the brands are telling them, oh, you got you need to invest here, you invest here.
But right now we have we don’t have that much money. And me personally, if you’re going to give me money to manage and you’re going to say I only have X amount of dollars, then I’m going to look at it and say, where is the best place to put these dollars? And me personally, I would rather see those funds being vested in incremental revenue. And part of what I go through in the blog is how you calculate Rowlatt for a metasearch.
And yes, there are assumptions that are made that can be that. I’m sure we can have an open discussion about how do you calculate Rose from metasearch transaction? So in my personal belief, you should be going through and saying, if I have a if you’re in Google Hotel ads and you’re already searching for a specific hotel, that’s when you’re going to find Google Hotel ads, right. You’re already going to be looking for a specific hotel and you’re in their bubble, so to speak.
If you’re your own first and Expedia is there, whoever gets that transaction, I make an assumption that you’re going to that reservation. For me to go to Expedia, you can go direct. So the difference in that what you’re making is what you save and commissions are not going to be OK. So what you should be calculating your Roizen is your profit of your incremental profitability, not the total reservation value, the total revenue value of that entire reservation.
So there’s a lot of and then not to mention everyone’s playing with Expedia promo. So you’re out of whack and out of parity with probably half the hotels anyway. So you’re throwing your money in the two. But that’s the premise of why I think that hoteliers need to think more strategically about how they calculate realize with the caveat. There’s a lot of different variables, whether it’s conversion numbers, commission numbers that go into play and how you calculate that. So different hotels are going to come up with different math, depending on what their what their value, what their rates are.
And Stephanie comes out swinging with a low growth. OK, well, it didn’t start with Jane.
You ignorant? I don’t do that. Don’t don’t go. Don’t start it.
Live are good points. And I think that the biggest point of all of that to being the fact that no generalization that any of us make applies to everyone out there. Right. Everything does have to be specific to the individual. Every hotel is different and so on. Right now, one of the first things I would bring up is the fact that we’re making an assumption that if the consumer clicks out to Expedia or booking dot com or any of those are the channels that we’re just as likely to get the booking as we were if they went to our own website.
And while I can’t give a statistic to this, we know that that’s just not going to be true, because when they land on that panel, they’re present with your hotel at the top of the list, along with a myriad of other properties that, hey, here are other places that can be booked, expedient booking, dotcom, don’t get paid just because they’re booking your hotel. They get paid for a booking, literally care where it’s at. So they just want to get the booking.
All right, away, if we have to take into consideration the fact that you just might not get that booking versus actually getting it, so before we think about the cost of that sale or in return, think about cost of not getting the sale as well as part of that. So we know the conversion rates are going to be higher as they come to your brand Dotcom. Now, what exactly those numbers are are going to vary quite a bit.
Now, certainly, if your conversion rates are really low and I’ve seen these cases say they’re at a three percent conversion rate coming off of medium, and that can be very difficult to optimize. And usually, though, if I see that, that means it’s like a eight hundred dollar a night hotel. But that has a longer sales cycle and people just are not as spontaneous. Typically, when I look at brands and have have worked with many of the brands, the conversion rates are 10 percent better coming off of metasearch.
So now you can really start doing some crazy things and you’re capturing that gas data. So even if they don’t book the reservation, you have the opportunity to apply remarketing strategies. That’s coming from a brand level, not a property level, of course. And you also have the ability to build what’s called the Google audiences. So now, even just from a metasearch perspective, when they come back later on, I can be more aggressively to them. Say they went to your website, they didn’t book, but now they’re shopping again.
Now, I really know that I want that person to book directly with me. And so it gives you a lot more options than if it were to go through the. Yeah, I mean, I think that’s part of the problem. I work in the branded hotel space, so having them come Derek Derreck doesn’t mean that I get their name and email address necessarily. That’s going to go into my reservation data. But from a brand and hotel standpoint, it’s not like and there are tools that you can put them into the remarketing for.
But for the most part, if they put that conversion pixel in there and if they convert and they get excluded from the data that you get to be able to market to them. So while I would love to have all that data, at least in the branded space at a hotel level, that’s the data that we’re going to get. And I use the five percent conversion rate. We only the only hotels that we’re working right now are branded. And I’m rarely seeing over a five percent conversion rate in this time period.
In this Koban environment, I’m not seeing those type of conversion rates and we have full service and select service hotels and then we’re not seeing those higher conversion rates. But that would make a big difference in the in the in our sector for sure.
Yeah, probably even at a 10 percent conversion rate, you’ve probably got 40 percent cancellation. So totally understanding that within your scenario with what you’re talking about with a brand. So most of the brands out there now offer what they call top off program. Right. So most of this marketing and metasearch is coming from the brand corporate level. But they’re not marketing your hotel. They’re marketing Marriott, Hilton, Windom, whatever it may be. Right. They’re marketing that brand specifically, but they all have variations of a top off program and they have fancy names for that.
They do for each one of them.
Now, that gets to be a little bit more interesting when we talk about return, because a lot of times the numbers that you’re going to see for that, he was saying he needs to say, OK, I didn’t want it.
So I guys have got to go out and say, well, we’ll have to go and take all the good stuff for your agency and how bad with a Keanu Reeves digital market.
Thanks very much, guys. Thanks. Thank you.
So a lot of times the stats that you’re going to see from that, from the the campaign manager, the program that you’re doing online, are going to see the returns specifically to your investment. Right. So let’s say hypothetically that the click actually cost three dollars. And let’s say hypothetically that your location contributed one dollar of that and the brand contributed two dollars of that. And they’ll say that you got a 10 to one ARAWA Well, that’s ten to one dollar that you put in.
That’s not ten to three. Right. So it’s a little bit misleading because you still paid the marketing dollars. You may not be able to see the actual the bigger picture of what all the stats were. So definitely taking that into consideration, but also then recognizing that that can be marketed that is specific to your individual property. So when we think about it from a larger digital marketing perspective, you know, what are the number one rules of digital marketing is owning your branded search terms, right?
So if somebody is looking for your property by name, you want to own that space. And metasearch is no different, right? You’re owning the space on the left hand side of that screen on Google. Why don’t you want to own the space on the right hand side of the screen that those two go hand in hand, but it can bring incremental to where people aren’t looking specifically for you, where people are looking for hotels in Nashville, there are ways that you can actually increase your market ranking when using Google promoted properties and things like that.
They have a lower return, just like a lower return for non branded search term would be. Right. But there are ways that you can do that.
Well, let’s be very clear on that for the audience, that when we talk about incremental incremental exposure and visibility within that space of Google promoted properties, I do feel as incremental TripAdvisor sponsored placement is that. But it’s super confusing to the regular hotelier. But you also have TripAdvisor, that’s metasearch. And TripAdvisor sponsored this not you have Google Hotel ads. It’s metasearch and Google property promotion. That’s that’s not metasearch, I think, to the normal like everyday hotel here.
They’re like, why? Why are there to Google’s and why are there two TripAdvisor in my in my metasearch options? And to them, they’re like, well, the branders told me to do this. And so I’m just going to I’m just going to do it. So I think maybe I need to go back and revise article and talk about what I think is truly incremental visibility and what’s not a point.
And even within Google, you take it a step further because you’ve got Google Local Universal, where they search for your property by name and Google Maps, where they’re just looking for hotels in space. Right. There’s two different demographics even before we start talking about promotor properties, but it’s kind of a subchannel within Google. Same thing for TripAdvisor, right? TripAdvisor, you can go in there looking for property, looking for hotels in an area, and then your popularity ranking comes into play and different things like that.
So, yeah, different ways of getting to the same place, hopefully. And that’s a very big qualifier. But hopefully you have tracking from your brand in there that separates the two. And there are ways of doing that where you can say this was a click that came. A promoted hotels, promoted properties, as they now call it, versus this came specifically from a an actual metasearch campaign in our lives for Google property promotion or whatever they call it, has been for it.
So I want to believe in it. I want it to succeed. And our airlines just haven’t been and there’s not much traction to be had. You would think people using maps and whatever it would work. But we haven’t gained any traction in that space.
But let’s be careful with it, because you’re talking about possibly overlooking attribution here as well, because you’ve got a channel global talking about metasearch and and did it actually as the last click or whatever and attribution each provider is offering you at that time. But you’ve also got to look metasearch, as they mentioned that it can be it can be used at different stages of people searching for a hotel. But it’s also that middle section as well. So you’ve got people looking for hotels in downtown, wherever or whatever it’s going to be, all people looking specifically for the brand name.
But when people are looking for specific rather than not just looking for you to to to book and purchase, it may be that I’ve got a list of hotels and I’m checking out all of those. I’ve got my short list is it’s how you how you whittling down the the actual decision making process. And we found that when we’ve been using meta networks in every single part of that, that journey and that cycle, I don’t want to use full because I know you’ll learn when not a lot of useful going to be fair.
Tras, I mean, in your world, you have much better tracking available to you than in Stephanie’s world, where she is beholden to the the brand stack, which does not allow her to have visibility into that.
And I, I see both sides of what both Dean and Stephanie are saying.
But again, with Stephanie, it’s it’s because, quite honestly, the brand is a much better deployment of media spend than an individual branded property is for the exact reason they have more product in a market. Their spend is going to net for the mother ship, a much better return on investment. And it is one of those investments that brands should be all in on because it is a rising tide type investment, especially in markets where they’re very dense with their different offerings.
So were you saying that you think metasearch is better for Brand than, say, independent? Is that.
No, I’m saying well, first of all, any form of customer acquisition cost is going to receive a better return on investment the more product you have to sell, because you’re more likely to have the product that meets the need of the audience. So that the same thing I’m saying about Meeta is true for for most customer acquisition spend.
It’s what the OTUS is live off of. Right. Like the otter’s make a ton more on their advertising spend than an independent hotel or a single hotel.
Well, because they have tons of stuff to sell, you know, but with Medda specifically, if you have a brand mothership who can be attracting market level demand across their branded portfolio, that is a better use of funds than each individual property trying to put into their own meta efforts because there’s waste involved in that in that acquisition, there’s less waste at a market level.
I like to add into some functionalities to this, and definitely you’ll pick the one that if you can correct me on this one, you know, handling metasearch for branded hotels at this moment, there are a lot of different tools within the platform. CODI It’s easy to just tell me Cody’s a great company to do great stuff. They have they have the interfaces for most of these brands and they offer all these variations. And there’s a struggle too. And this is where Richard is very good at.
And I know that firsthand is that explaining the value of the tool proposition, they use it as blossman.
They give you a Phillips screwdriver. You say metasearch only. Well, not everything is a Phillips screwdriver fix sometimes to be the standard. And what happens is there are times where metasearch, the limitation factor might be the budget amount. So your voices down your channels or down your your ability to be in the market space is down because you’re not really giving the funding for it. It’s not a bidding per click. It’s an amount of money willing to spend that allows you to create voice.
And then you’re your click through value is whether or not that voice is exercised on a regular basis, decides on that strategy the other tools of the expanded place. But there are times, if it’s exactly what you’re saying, there’s times you need to amplify your presence on the OTS, your double hitting. You’re trying to show for where you have the opportunity with budget availability and you’re trying to go over and show up for when you aren’t there on the notice that are pushing you.
And then when you talk about the Google map and so forth, there are tons of strategies associated with specific campaigns that that’s helpful. But it’s a specific button. It’s not just on, as you pointed out sometimes just because I was told to do it. Squanders money, diminishes the value, ownership is sketchy. They don’t like the whole idea. So it’s a matter of using what tool, at what time for what initiative, and that requires a hand on the throttle.
You know, if you’re always told that you can’t win a race only past blue cars, you’re going to get stuck not winning the race because a red car is going to get heavy. You can’t pass them because you were told you can’t spend money on that. So the idea of using all the individual tools at the time best suited for them is really the mix.
Cody gives you those things to the brand to use. And the real value of the CODI platform is is one of the few venues you can look at Ross and and return and and so forth. I think what takes away from a lot of this is when you start adding in all the fees you mentioned in your article about the agencies and the and the commissions and all this, that deteriorates the value proposition, certainly to Dean’s point, and we do that in our budget right now, you have to put in your implied cancellation percentages, which also are variable by time sequencers, high cancellations during certain times of year.
New York adelgid. Gosh, sometimes that over 80 percent cancellations on OTAs at some times of the year just booking down.
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Well, I think one of the things that I mean, maybe before budget restrictions were a problem if I mean now there’s less money, but there’s also less we’re seeing less demand in that space. So it’s not a fosset that you can turn on to get more incrementally. It’s not there’s a there’s a cap of what’s going on in that market and for that specific hotel that you can spend no matter what, there’s a there’s a there’s a ceiling, so to speak, like an Expedia travel ads where you can.
It’s a concept that you can open up and potentially gain more in mentality or social media or whatever. I mean, there certainly I think that’s the other thing. Like if an owner says, oh, I’ve got a great Arawa in August and I’m like, yeah, but we only spent we only spent one hundred fifty dollars, so we didn’t move the needle. So yeah, we had a great hour and we can open ourselves up back. But that’s not we weren’t helping anybody achieve any goals this real revenue.
One of the things why, why were you limited to the 150. Just, just the fact that hoteling market can spend bicuspids with it, specifically metasearch. It’s not a you know, they have to be in your kind of ecosphere and it has to be the man to support it. Yeah, it’s a finite number of people that are going to search on any platform for any it doesn’t matter whether it’s metasearch at Google, even Altius, for that matter.
There’s only going to be a finite number of people searching to go to New York. So you’re looking for a share of that. But one of the points I wanted to raise on that on those restrictions as well, Stephanie, as well, having worked for both brands in terms of metasearch and digital marketing as well as independents, I can see both sides of the story here. But there’s also an artificial ceiling, this place by some brands, not all of them, but certainly the brands that I’ve had experience with that the way that they take the corporate marketing budget, which at the end of the day is still budget passed on by the hotels in the first place.
And part of that, that they’re mostly all going to be set for being part of that. The brand, how those fee, how those those marketing dollars are actually applied across branded hotels are not always equal in in the chance of getting a positive return on that spend, you can end up putting more marketing dollars into the big box because everyone’s going there. And the little guy who’s out in the middle of nowhere is maybe getting a fraction of the dollars of what they really should should be offering.
So from that point of view, the deck is stacked heavily in the favor of the ones that are actually performing versus the ones I know a lot of that can be priced currency issues as well. I will say.
And also to right now, this is an opportunity in market right now, which is why I’m so emphatic with the people that I’m dealing with about this. This is the time to make a lot of hotels have turned their back on the opportunity that the metasearch can provide them for exactly what you say. You spend money on limitations, making payroll, paying bills and trickling marketing dollars. Further, they can put it. They don’t see MEDDER as the value proposition that it can potentially represent.
And to your point, that it always will represent something. So if you’re the only voice willing to put money in for your market, your market inherently will grow geographically to a certain level. Not it’s not going to go really too big, but it’ll go at least in association to what people are looking for. In the larger, broader sense, you will show up better and more frequently if you allow for the budget to be placed on it, mitigate it with your cost per click, but be the only player in town right now because everybody’s going to jump back on this boat again and you are going to be what you citris the little guy on the left that is not going to have their voices work is all the big guys in the middle decide to wake up and start putting dollars into it.
It’s an opportunity to fractional opportunity right now and then augment it with all the other little tools.
But I don’t think and I don’t think you can compete like what you spend on minor versus what the hotel next door spends on matter. And it’s not a. There’s no competition there, really. It’s not like Expedia travel ad where you’re going head to head with another hotel with your advertising dollars, just generally.
Not necessarily. Again, you’re thinking talk with the phone on the bottom of the funnel to use the funnel to. So I’m not allowed it’s in the middle of looking at it’s a I’m going to look at your set because I have got choice and they found them on the air. But I’m definitely going to check you out on your website and how I find you on your own website.
And the journey it takes me to get that is is as important as the end goal that I get to. So it’s it’s not just top and bottom. And I’ve seen this at all. I’ve done surveys with the results. We checked it all out. People will put you in that book, maybe one or two hotels that you’re looking at, the maybe nine hotels, who knows?
But it will vary. But people will go see if I met it, they’ll go see if I had Google and still go organically. They’ll go in a whole myriad of different ways. And it’s about having a comprehensive digital marketing strategy to make sure you can capture those people. I’d love to continue this conversation and give you a prospect that Stephanie, I’m going to drop off Krispy Kreme three three six three six.
We’re finding I get it’s it’s Tristant Heywood at three and six, the agency we’re all linked to. And give us a shout. I have a great long weekend, everyone. Day for us is called Monday.
So I’ll you people are all the same over work. It’s working.
And I agree that comprehensive treston set about being comprehensive is is dead on.
And I think that’s part of that whole thing that I’m trying to get across. I mean, if someone’s on your Google Hotel adger section, they’re going be looking at your pictures or me looking at your reviews. You’re going to be looking at your price against the comps and all of those things come into play. I’m just saying, of all the different things that you can that you can spend money on, like where your where your pricing is in that in there should be one of the less things, because I think the other thing we haven’t talked about is the lifetime value of a customer.
And I don’t have the data to be able to say who’s shopping and who’s, you know, who’s potential gas. But I feel like and this is just from my learnings, the people that are at my hotels right now are not the hotels and the demographics that we were seeing pre Copan. So do I. Can I turn these people into loyal guest? The answer? I think the only way to turn them into oil gas is to try to get them to stay at your hotel.
And for me, if they stayed at Expedia, then we should be trying to get them to be loyalist’s after they stay with us after booking that reservation through Expedia, I think there’s a bigger opportunity. German oil, gas, once they’ve actually stayed with us versus saying versus the branding component of it of where the transaction happens, I just end with you.
Part applies no matter what channel it comes from, regardless of its direct through an OTA or walk in whatever the case may be that applies across the board. Right. So so that does bring it back to OK, now what do I really want to get it from and where do I have the best opportunity to really control my narrative with that guest and have any pre and post communications with them? And the answer is from a direct booking. So we know there’s a movement out there for direct bookings.
Metasearch be a key part of that. I want to go back to something that was talking about earlier, actually, though, where you talked about the brands and having the market presence within a are the number of properties within a city. And you’re absolutely spot on with that, too, with the brands having an advantage. Because when I ran metasearch campaigns for one of the major brands, what we found was that there was about a 15 percent cross-sell.
So they may have clipped on property A over here at the end of the book in Property B, so they have that advantage that all property was actually closer to where I needed to be or at a better rate, whatever the case may be. So that’s that advantage that they do have. But that’s something that’s coming from a brand level, more so than a property level.
I need your data. Let’s talk about the real problem here. I just want that data.
I one point that I thought with less people, I could actually get a word in edgewise, but I’m getting better. My elbows are to just one point I wanted to make was I almost think you have to separate Google from the rest of meta, because if you look at what Google has done, go, go search your hotel. Now, all roads are pushing you down the meta path. Yeah. If you’re not in Google Medda, you’re almost not on Google anymore.
Unless you’re doing a direct travel ad buy. You’re not there because even on a travel ad buy, they’re pushing you down to meter because you’ll see in the box there and then they’ll take you down to the meter. So it’s almost like you’re not there. And I think we all know there. Ninety five percent, I think, of the world’s market share. Ninety three percent of the people actually start their search using Google. Right. So it’s just.
If you’re not in Google Medda, it’s almost like you’re not on Google now, and I’d like to continue this conversation with this real quick, too. We think about this, a single path discovery. We know we all agree that’s not the case, but we’re talking about in the context of a single path of discovery, which is not really accurate with the attribution strings that we have. We know that this is a partial process of discovery. And to the point that he made earlier about the fact of top or bottom or top or bottom, you know, trusted that there is a path in between, that there is going to be this discovery.
What’s in the area whose similar to this, I like a brand. You look at these brands, what’s their service scores? What’s the ratings? All these get mixed and jumbled into the process of this so that when they do come across the hotel by name us in particular, that we represent ourselves to what Dan just mentioned, we’re in the space we’re found for however they find it interesting statistic. Sixty two percent of all discoveries are being done on mobile.
Now, at this point, this is the search platforms.
So you look at the Google, you’ve got to go through five swipes at Google before you get to six swipes of organic are paid, before you get to seventh and eighth swipes beyond of organic. So you need that presence up top. You need to be on that map, which we say doesn’t have a great conversion, but we can even talk about social that way. Social is not a direct channel.
It’s an amplifier. It’s a catalyst to other things. It does create revenue, but it more importantly creates awareness that creates revenue on the channels of conversion. So all these are part of the overall process to this. I do want to tout this horn for just a second. Dean is in the strata of all this where he can bring in individual hotel to market as much as he can bring a cluster of hotels as you can bring in brand of hotels.
So where a lot of people look and if they’re listening to the show, say, well, I’m a mom and pop around the corner, do not exclude yourself, you have the ability to do that.
So just to keep clear that we’re not just talking about brands are ownership groups or large hotels that can afford these kind of things.
This can be incredibly affordable, capable and even down to the scale. As Dan pointed out, just beyond Google, if all you have to be is in that space, you can be just in that space for literally less than a hundred bucks a month.
You have the question. I’m sorry. Is it possible to do a short term test? Because I found that one year to another year something would be productive or not productive or I tried it and it was unproductive. And a year later I tried it and it was productive. Sometimes I’ll see that one hotel and another hotel in the same market have completely different results. One is one. It’s worth every penny and the other one I’m putting in as much as I’m getting, if you know what I mean.
Sometimes they’re not even charged the same for the same click, which makes no sense. But for some reason that happened. So I found that I need to test things in order to see whether it will work. Campbeltown Hotel choose to make just a small test to see whether it’s a fit for them or not.
The short answer would be yes. The longer answer is it depends, because up front, the first thing we’ve got to do is get you the connectivity and get your rates on availability from point A to point B. Now, maybe you already have that. If you already have them, that makes things a lot easier. If you don’t already have that, that’s the first stage of the game and there’s usually some upfront cost of doing that. So getting that all set up and running takes a little bit of upfront work, which kind of is defeating it if you’re only running it for thirty days.
Right. So usually you want to have a little bit longer those types of cases. But I would look at that on a case by case basis. If you have some examples, you want to send me some off line.
I’m happy to talk about them. You know, we talked a lot. Look, I’m sorry, please go right ahead.
Well, we’ve been talking about brands, I guess I think of buckets. I think you’ve got these single off independent hotels. You’ve got, again, maybe working for an individual branded hotel or two and then maybe you’re working for either the brand or a regional cluster. The other thing so I think there’s there’s going to be millions of ways to skin the cat in between there and different levers and how far to push different ones. The other thing with the brand is that they’re charging you three or four percent for marketing fees already.
So this stuff, these points, you didn’t have as much money because the owner of that hotel that courtyard’s says, hey, wait a minute, I’m already given Marriott ten thousand dollars a month. I can’t afford to give you any more. Even now, I only got this tiny little bit to deal with. And I think in an independent hotel, it’s not like they have unlimited money, but they’re not paying that brand. The brand, I think, for independent hotels becomes almost the Internet.
So there’s different different ways that you would have to pull that. But you’re right, when I was with Marriott, we cared. We cared about the region. We really care about the individual hotels. But if the cross-sell did happen, oh, well, it still was in the Marriott coughers.
Exactly one. I think that’s part of the part of the analysis you have to do. If you’re looking at what like you said, if Marriott European ex-president and they’ve already negotiated an awesome percentage on the LTE. And you have to consider that. I mean, I think I would assume that most independents pay an average of five to seven percent more in terms of commissions on the OTAs. And that’s a that’s a fairly large chunk of change that you have to consider know when you do your calculation.
I think the other thing that has just because my article got picked up by a company in the U.K. and I’m going to ask this one didn’t come up in our thread yesterday that there’s a new paper, same model. That’s not an offering to read through CODI. So and they were like they were like, does your opinion change if it’s paper, say, in me without knowing the numbers, without knowing what that model looks like after the hotel years when they commission, if they don’t have to pay out of pocket like hurts less.
So they’re less likely to do a very detailed analysis, like turning on promos and things that just for whatever reason, doesn’t feel like it’s coming out of your pocket in the same way. But if you want to speak to that model and how that differs than a traditional what’s been the more traditional cost per click model, I’d be curious on your thoughts that that’s a great point, actually.
And it’s what we used to call the marketing volleyball game. Where whose budget is it? Does it come out of marketing? Does it come as a consumer booking? And how do we keep on talking about back and forth? And people can be really an effective way of doing that, I think. And I don’t want to speak for Cody, but I think they have the ability to run those campaigns.
Definitely when I saw that on the thread on LinkedIn, I emailed my wrap and I was like, what is this?
I run into those that you can’t do a paper today, which is effectively a commission model combined with a CPC model that the brand might be running. Those two don’t play together.
All the brands are doing a certain contribution for some proportion of sharecrop Stirbois. They wouldn’t you wouldn’t want to turn that off. You would want to turn the brand’s funds off to. Exactly. To transition to that model. Right, right.
Right. So devilled in that space as well. I’m sorry. Do you do wonder if I went through the sojourned, played in the space for a while and still tries to play in the commission model?
They just they just reconnected with Ishy on that commission model. She was out. Now they’re actually back into that.
And it can be advantageous in the fact that if you weren’t playing in the space, it can get you in the space. So better to Beyonder and add a commission basis than not at all. And you’ve got nothing to lose, right? There’s no risk in doing it that way. The disadvantages, you have no control over it. What what Google’s going to end up doing is they’re going to reverse engineer that it’s what they call an effective cost per click, and that’s going to determine what your ranking is on there.
You have no control over it whatsoever. It’s get what you get go through with it.
But it’s better than nothing to other impacts to that one is the fact that you’re fighting with your PPC campaigns against that, because everybody’s going for brand. Brand is a fad as fruit. So the commission models, they just absolutely beat to death your brand and who you are. And if you’re seeing you’re competing with yourself in the same space. So you have to step back from that. And then also at the dean’s point, if their campaigns are not successful, you’re negative ranking gets hit.
Your PPC campaigns actually cost you more if they’re not successful, what they’re doing, if they’re doing just broadcast’s pray and spray stuff and just turning faucets on and trying to get any demand in the market and they’re irrelevant to the process, you’re going to get hit on your ranking value authority ranking on your PPC because they put the two together.
Google does know who you are and comes with everything.
I talk about the Google algorithm and I give a long stream of like what it is, and then I say, let me simplify it for you.
Its position equals when Google makes the most money, what to do next? Excellent point. Point.
Now, we are more recently I recently I mean, yesterday, there was an announcement that came out by some of the vendors out there and it has since been retracted today, actually. So you know where I’m going with this? Yes, I do, because I couldn’t get in there to respond fast enough.
People are comfortable with adding an organic listing to your metasearch results, which means that you don’t have to pay anything for it. Of course, you get to the you’re going to be at the bottom of the list, but you could be on the organically. So that may or may not be a real thing. So they just put that out there. It was been retracted. But if that does come to pass, that makes things really interesting.
I got to I was crazy because I can find it. But I think if you go to GNB, right, the only non or the only organic search is that little website thing. Right. You click on website and it takes you to to paid for. Now, Google’s announced that they’re doing these like enhanced listings. I envision that that’s going to be a sponsored listing, just like TripAdvisor business listing. How long before you think there’s no organic left than GMHBA?
It used to be a thing like I mean, Lauren, you can speak to this a million years ago.
You and I used to love running this ad where I was overbooked and we could run. I know you remember when you could run Edwards Express and you can have the little blue promoted pin on your map.
That was money back then. That was easy.
It was money.
You would have like 20 red pens on your map and then there’s a little blue one for your hotel.
Yeah, I go to say that I think that the direction of this is going to go into your enhanced sub. You know, you have your extra links then underneath of who you are and you have those extra links said this is my booking. This is my about this is my I think Google is right to the point that giving that away now is people getting used to it is now a time to monetize it. I think what’s going to happen is they’re going to expand that functionality and or limit what you have organically and make you pay for what you want to to add to it and give you some control over where you want to put those things a little bit more so or increase the value of the content or something.
But yeah, I think that’s probably more so where that might be going.
I think out of legitimacy, they can’t take everything away. They can take some away from that on the side, because I think people are going to say, wait a minute, the only reason why I’m getting this stuff is because somebody paid for it. They’re not necessarily what is the result of what I’m searching for. So I think back to their guest centric or user centric persona. I think they’ll keep a predominant amount or just enough to Dan’s point in the algorithm for them to make money.
The only thing doing it is antitrust. I don’t know that they could do it tomorrow. They can turn it on.
But were antitrust answer your question about would they ever pay make you pay for those are the links in there. Keep in mind that I believe personally that’s one of the reasons that led to the demise of TripAdvisor a little bit as they started trying to monetize every little piece of the page on there. And hotels just got annoyed by it. So I think there is a lack of confidence, too, from the user. Yeah, exactly. Give you think top.
I think the really difficult thing that Charles TripAdvisor success is when they change to too best for you. Best value, best is the staff and not just the regular listing of the ratings, because it was the purity of, you know, here is what the content is. This is it’s one of the public who stayed there and wrote reviews. What was the beauty of TripAdvisor? That’s what made it different from every other theme. When you when you try to guess, well, I saw you looking at a Marriott Hotel one.
So now I’m just going to the Marriott Hotel. Hotels come up for you in the beginning is next.
Well, I don’t doubt they came up. You can be sure what was going on.
You know, they change the up to the point where it was it was like difficult to find reviews, which is why I went there in the first place right up having more reviews than they do.
Yeah, eating to lunch now. So.
Well, we’re coming to the bottom of the hour for the two hours, which is always fun to see. Just blow by like that because we had that was an awesome thank you both, Stephanie and Dean for the points because I think that was going to it. I’m sorry. Go ahead. So I went to add before we close off, I wanted to backtrack to one of the things that we were talking about earlier. I often hear people talk about they can’t compete with the OTAs on the metasearch listings, by the way.
And that is absolutely not true, because you have to remember, first of all, the voters have a much different objective than you do their marketing to every hotel in the city. And they want to see booking dotcom coming up again and again and again. The other thing to remember is to I talked earlier about the Google audiences. They don’t have your audience. They certainly have their own. Don’t get me wrong, they’re doing this, too, but they don’t have yours.
So I’m going to do a shameless self promotion here. And just like that here. There we go. Anyway, I wrote a blog about how to compete with what’s on your metasearch campaign so you can see the link there.
Again, going back to some of this stuff, I think that stuff made some excellent points within the article. And it really is a matter of metrics. It’s a matter of how many tools are you using in combination or allowed to use what your budgeting is, what your purpose of getting into it is. And I think those points were exceptionally done in your article and also to your points as to the usability is is something so it’s like a nice, happy blend.
When you first you think it’s like no. Yes.
But actually it’s both like, yes, I agree that it’s a great way.
Yeah. The Green Zone, what do you know? But. And I did have a little bit of a baby title, so I apologize for that, but which since you’re our our newest guest to the show on the show, thank you so very much for having join us in person rather than always, as you’ve been historically been in the attendees form, which we appreciate as well.
We hope to have you back as many times as you’re willing to come back with us if most people don’t know what you’re currently doing now.
So if you’re interested in letting anybody know how to reach out to you or what it is that you do, please, by all means, let everyone know.
What is it that for me, it’s for my emails, my last name and the word consulting. So Ferar consulting at Gmail dot com. I also have a website for our consulting at Gmail dot com. You can get a hold of me and I do a lot of hotel consulting, hotel hospitality, mostly with the revenue challenged assets he does an exceptional job at.
I said earlier in the show the pleasure of knowing when of those assets available now.
So yes, Dan, it sets I mean, now that you’re going to be out of quarantine, we lose you again for another six months, is that’s what’s going to happen?
I think so. I may try to avoid them again from Honolulu. I am here Friday, but I have to see if I can make it between my flight back and next Friday.
But I will try R US in New York for a little bit longer after quarantine because you’re sending officially out this weekend.
So I’m done quarantine. Yeah, I try to be on about a little bit or you just pretty much just hop into another hotel before you leave or what do you think? I’m going to check into a hotel. Haven’t booked it yet. So looking around and then it’s going to hang out for a few days and see what New York is like, hour and covid world. And then we’re back on Friday, next Friday now.
Now, if they wanna know more about what it is that you do, I mean, I’ve gotten used to being on the show for two weeks. I was like, I’m going to miss you not being on the show again. But for for what it is if you do and everything and the train that you do, they just mean everything. Working the phones.
You sure you can find me on my LinkedIn? Just my name, Daniel Axemen or my website Asado Dotcom as a double dot com at one club. I like to make we are we have a over and I teach a hotel digital marketing essentials course for each other. I mean I we have the last one of the year coming up on September 14th. We have a few slots available. So if anybody’s interested, please go to the website and you can find us there.
And we miss Holly too.
And I know she’s been busy, which why she hasn’t been able to be on the show for a while. But Holly was one of the original people that were on the show with us for many, many years. And she is brilliant as he is talented and she’s excellent. She also has her own program, which is influencer sales, which teaches sales training to sales people and beyond. Really, it’s not just sales people. It’s people that want to know sales for hospitality in particular and methodologies offer.
She does a fantastic job that used to be the vice president of Signature Series, and she had been doing that for many, many years, too, as well. Dean, where you’ve got a couple of things going on. But yes, Mr. Metasearch. Sure.
So we’ve got actually two websites you can look at. One of them is Basecamp MEDCOM. The other one is metasearch marketing dot com. And the difference between the two of them is one that is focused on training materials. Ironically, I believe also working with Holly Zobelle and possibly developing something for HSM about metasearch. So that’s a work in progress. And then metasearch marketing dot com is all about helping actually run those programs, run those campaigns. And as you alluded to earlier, actually, I’ve been doing some research on that to find a solution for kind of the missing link.
You would get a lot of these small properties that are often ignored by the big players out there where the problem is which of the world and any number of other vendors is not picking on anybody and finding a plug and play solution that can get them connected to Google Medda. I’ve been doing a lot of research for that. I think I’ve found a solution. So reach out to me.
Oh, and by the way, you said like Mondo, when they were doing the time warp on the last of Guardians of the Galaxy, Part two, and they’re bouncing around in their faces, all just like Mondo in the middle of that.
That’s sort of what, Stephanie, if people know about Kozlow marketing, what it is that you do and can contact with you, how can they find you?
Yes, you can find a Chicago marketing dotcom. You get LinkedIn Stefanie’s struction and.
Adele says, I could never get your company right at the beginning and I was distracted with technology and I can’t do two things. What if I to bubble gum my stand still.
So just know that you can reach me at a Adele. Felt like the singer is literally on fire reputation. That from my website is despite your reputation marketing dot com. And you know, I guess if one thing is that you have ninety six point one percent guest satisfaction, everybody would do it. But I seem to have a knack for this thing and I would love to share it with you. So if you need any help becoming a hotel, Ribbentrop, with your outstanding reviews, talk to me.
I think it’s more than a knack.
I think it’s a gift. But let’s just make the top four hotels in New York. And TripAdvisor is not an act. That’s a gift.
I want to make sure that we didn’t miss the people that had drop off early course. Obviously, we saw Tristan Ben from three and six agency. That’s three and six, as is spelled out, their base over across the pond in England, north of England, to be exact. And they are digital without the city. So that’s the distrust, distrust that they have a great slogan, I never guess.
Honestly, it’s hard to see. Thank you.
Yeah, they’re very truthful about what they do and they do it exceptionally. Excellent job to that. I also want to refer to Stuart Butler would flip up to help with fuel travel. They are probably going to be on the show next week to discuss their latest finances. Obviously, the accumulating them now, we’ve always allowed, if not allowed, we’ve always been happy to have them come on and review those numbers as to consumer sentiment through the entire process of going right now this year.
So we’re going to be posting those numbers when they can come through. Also with us was Mr Edwards, which is an advocacy based platform that is being created, creating the relationship with your gas company, the got a Deleware centric and then following the relationship building. So if you want to find this show and all previous Torrance’s before you can go to hospitality, digital marketing dot com for such a live show to sixty five there, the show notes the links.
And we’ve only had a couple of topics on today. But thank you Robert. All the same for getting it to us, for us to be able to use. And there’s great content. If you want to sign up for his newsletter, you can go to Bitly by the way, forward slash Rokita all over space. It’s an excellent list, well worth read every week as he pushes it out because there’s a little bit of what’s going on in the industry that can affect your hospitality business.
And don’t get our podcast, which is working podcast. You’ll find that on. There is a seventeen country for it and five. Will you also do it on Lexton, Siri and Google Play to tell them to play. That’s pretty much you podcast.
We are to do this as we always do, into 11 languages. We’re going to keep Romanian on because of our last week. We’ve got an audience. We’re getting back in the language of translation, so you’ll be able to hear us all talk in Romanian. No, just closed captions anyway. So next week we’ll go probably through school troubles. We also have the potential of a guest post. We get go has got to get that confirmed potentially and make it weren’t for the favorites.
Again, thank you for the report from the peanut gallery to the life side of it. And we hope to see everyone.
Eleven, thirty Eastern Time next week. Thanks, everyone.
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