Ready or Not, Here Big Data Comes!

HITEC Vendors Offer Ways to Analyze Customer Data

Everyone seems to have a BIG opinion when it comes to Big Data. How much is too much? How should you be using it?

But like we used to say in a game of hide and seek, “Ready or not, here it comes!”

Hotels must embrace data in order to give guests a better experience.  If the approach is centered on knowing what guests want in order to give them a better experience AND to optimize revenue for your hotels then data isn’t “freaky” (as I heard it called in a HITEC education session), it’s relevant and necessary.

Orbitz has been busy this week addressing the fallout of a WSJ article in which CEO Barney Hartford indicated that their data tells them that Mac users pay more for hotel rooms than PC users and therefore they display higher priced properties to those users.

While this raised quite the eyebrow, I see a company analyzing data in order to put the hotels in front of travelers that they are likely to book.

I don’t necessarily agree that making a broad stroke analysis based on a demographic is the best way to target customers (because the use of demographics in data are typically declarative and not refined enough to truly indicate a customer’s potential preference).  But that being said, making your content and products more relevant to your customer based on actual data is better than product displays and offers based on assumptions.

In order for hoteliers to better know their guests and anticipate their purchasing decisions, they must embrace data — more specifically, data analysis — as a necessary piece of their product development and marketing efforts. Understanding and using that data is the key to both long-term loyalty and revenue growth.

With whom should you talk to today to make DATA work for you?

Companies such as Avius Insight, Guestware and Agilysis help collect it. Libra On Demand and ProfitSword can help you organize it. Newmarket International, Rate Gain and IQware can help you turn it into a real corporate asset, and companies that help turn a hotel’s data into real profit through high level analytic that the industry has not utilized before include Nor1 and SAS.

It may be the last day of HITEC but it’s definitely not too late to embrace the opportunity to learn how to make DATA work for your brand, chain or property.

For a hotel to stay relevant and drive demand for the inventories and services that it has available to guests, it must embrace DATA as a partner for success. With that partner, a hotel can know its guests, anticipate their needs and desires and offer guests a better stay while boosting the bottom lines.

Nicole Hockin is vice president of marketing and public relations for Nor1, Inc., a technology leader in upsell solutions and exhibitor at HITEC 2012. 

She thrives on the creation of successful brand development and strategic communications. Follow her on Twitter @travelnicole.

The content published in this section was provided by HITEC Guest Bloggers.  The information is the view/opinions of the Guest Bloggers and not of HFTP, nor of any person or organization affiliated or doing business with HFTP.

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About the Author: Eliza Selig