Richfield Hospitality Blog

Managing Social Media Marketing

October 17, 2014

Last month at an annual Richfield conference we discussed how to use social media to promote your hotel, and we wanted to share a few of the most notable points:

The shift from desktop to mobile is happening across all industries, especially in the hospitality industry, where mobile is seeing a 35% increase and desktop is seeing a 10.3% decrease in page views (according to HeBS Digital).  Not only is this leading to consumers booking on mobile but it is also leading to consumers interacting socially more often and faster than ever.   Now more than ever, it is becoming extremely important to share the digital voice platform with your customers.  The hotelier’s role is simply to host a great experience. Let the customers host the conversation with pictures, videos and comments. Of course letting your customers control your social voice can be risky. That is why it is imperative that you respond to comments.  This puts the power back into your hands by showing the customers you are listening and care about their options.

Along with the transition to mobile another major trend is simplicity.  Hotels need to make booking a room easy and straightforward.  Booking widgets are a great tool, especially on mobile.  Utilizing a widget can help reduce the amount of clicks, making it easier for your customers to reserve rooms, which will lead to better conversions. Keeping things simple also means reducing the amount of offers shown on mobile. Choose a few of your best offers that will be relevant to people on the go.

Finally, you cannot just manage social media independently from your other marketing strategies. Your strategies need to be part of a multi-media campaign that all convey the same message and tone.  Using emails, SEO, SEM, banner ads, and social media promoted posts should all be part of your campaign, because the average traveler is searching 21.6 websites before making a booking, and the more presence you have the more likely your hotel will get booked.

Millennial Marketing: New Age of Hospitality Consumers

August 14, 2014

Did you know that in the next five to ten years millennials will be the core consumers in the hospitality and travel industries?

Understanding how to market to this sector is critical as they enter into their peak earning, spending and travel years.  We compiled a few different insights that hotels can begin implementing now, as millennials start becoming the dominate consumer.

First it is important to know the demographics of this target audience. Hospitality Times has put together a detailed infographic showcasing the statistics of this group.

Millennial Demographics

Now that we know a little about them, below are some examples of how we can use our knowledge of this group to attract them:

Millennials are looking for a unique experience and are usually willing to pay more for that better experience. As they soon become the leading group of business travelers, it is important to know what factors can influence their decisions on where they choose to stay. For example, “foodies” (who are a prevalent subset of this market) are looking for a gourmet experience and are willing to spend 42% more company money on higher end meals, compared to only 26% of non-millennials.  This means hotels will need to revamp their lobby bars, restaurants and food service to meet the expectations of this sector.

Millennial travelers are also highly tech savvy and expect to have access to the web at all times.  This means hotels are going to have to invest in improving wi-fi and bandwidth to ensure its guests can be constantly connected.  Make sure that logging on to wi-fi is easy by removing obstacles like faulty passwords or low connectivity, but do not compromise security in the process.

A final insight to this group is that sustainability is an important component in the lives of these socially responsible travelers.  Creating and maintaining hotel policies around recycling, composting, reusing linens and towels can enhance a hotel’s reputation and give it a distinctive edge among these environment-friendly jet-setters.

For more insight about how to market to millennials contact us.

Social media and hospitality recruitment: What is all the buzz about?

November 8, 2011

By: Rose Patterson, Corporate Director of Human Resources at Richfield Hospitality

Social media is not a fad, it is here to stay and it is transforming not only the way we do business but also the way we recruit talent.  Our success in attracting top talent relies on how well we use the tools available through social media and how we market ourselves in those channels. (more…)

Employee Engagement in the Current Economy

October 28, 2011

By: Cathy Cooper, Corporate Director of Human Resources at Richfield Hospitality

Since 2009, employees have been reluctant to leave positions, waiting for signals of economic recovery.  As revenues improve, our organization must reach out to our talented employees in a meaningful way to keep them motivated and excited about their jobs. Today’s employees are more inclined to stay with their current employer when they have a sense of purpose and they feel their efforts are genuinely appreciated. (more…)

Having RevPAR Confidence in 2012

September 2, 2011

By: Tom Clearwater, Senior Vice President of Sales at Richfield Hospitality

Richfield recently had a 2012 budgeting process call. Afterwards, I went to the Web to see what the experts are saying for 2012. PwC is always a very reliable source when it comes to projections and below is a hot off the press article that I ask you to read very carefully.

We must believe in our abilities, systems and strategic thinking to achieve in times like these. Planning is critical. If we always think about who are the individual customers and groups and take care of them, they will continue to return. That is part of what will make us even more successful next year. And equally, if not more importantly, who are the replacement/target customers we will need if the economy stays fragile in this uncertain climate. If we do the strategic planning correctly and know our completion better than they know themselves, we will win. (more…)

Richfield Hospitality’s Best Practices in Controlling Credit Card Fees in Hotels

July 6, 2011

By: Lee Rossiter, Chief Financial Officer at Richfield Hospitality

Credit card processing fees are a significant expense for any hotel.  Fees can average 2% of annual revenues; so for a property with $10 million in annual revenues, fees would be $200,000.  But, who’s to say your fees shouldn’t be 1.8%, which equates to a $20,000 savings? (more…)

Costs Shouldn’t Come in the Way of the Guest Experience: Labor Expenses, Staffing, and Scheduling within Hotels

May 3, 2011

By: David Earl, Corporate Centralized Controller at Richfield Hospitality

One of the most controllable expenses in a hotel is labor.  Having the right number of employees scheduled to work each day is paramount to the guest experience and controlling the labor costs.  Too many employees scheduled will result in lost profit and having less work to do.  On the other hand, having too few employees scheduled results in work standards not being met, employees feeling rushed and stressed, along with guest complaints about the service and product quality they receive during their stay. (more…)

Why a minute in a hotel is so important – as it relates to profits

February 28, 2011

By: Robert Ferree, Vice President of Operations at Richfield Hospitality

DOING BUSINESS AS USUAL? YOU’RE LOSING PROFITS!

During my travels to various hotels across the country I notice the ways things are done or not done.  I speak with many managers about the performance of their hotels and performance of their competitors.  Many of these managers spend time grumbling about the things they have no control over and how it’s impacting their bottom lines.  I usually walk away wondering why the managers are not focused on those things in which they ARE in control of that would help increase profits.   (more…)

Are you reporting trade-outs correctly on your financial reports?

February 7, 2011

By: Rita Pohlmeier, Group Controller for Richfield Hospitality

There is a common arrangement in the hotel business where the hotel gives up something (rooms, food and/or beverages, etc.) in order to get something (other goods and/or services) in return.  This is known in the hospitality industry as ‘trade-outs’.

The most important point to remember: trade-outs ARE NOT FREE. (more…)

Embracing a Sales Culture

December 28, 2010

By: Lauri Wallin, Corporate Director of Sales & Marketing at Richfield Hospitality

In the past, hotels would distinguish their employees as either “front of the house” or “back of the house”.  “Front of the house” staff members were associates that had direct interaction with guests and as a result could impact sales and top line revenues.  These positions were comprised primarily of front desk agents and sales personnel.  “Back of the house” employees included administrative positions, kitchen staff, accounting and housekeeping. (more…)

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