Fuel Hotel Marketing Podcast: Episode 44 – What OTAs Are Doing Right And Your Hotel Is Doing Wrong

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In this episode, we take some of the elements from Stuart Butler’s  discussion on Direct Booking Strategies for Hotels form the HSMAI Resort Best Practices Initiative Annual Roundtable Meeting. The event was held at the New York Marriott Marquis on Feb 21st, 2017.

The topics being discussed were confidential, but Stuart cleared it with the attendees that he could share a small part of the conversation with our lucky podcast listeners.

Download the presentation here: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1t0Eo8N3g8g37Xgg6m8Bix0115jeYbUuX1l3RLFflcWs/edit#slide=id.g1b1a6b5120_0_6


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Show Notes:

Discussion: The Booking Decision

  • Why are OTAs so popular and what do they do better than hotels?
  • What can hotels do to encourage guest to book direct?

booking_com screenshot urgencybooking_com screenshot

What OTAs do well

  1. Simple & frictionless
  2. Create forward pressure
  3. Offer reassurance & eliminate doubt
  4. Leverage social proof
  5. Motivate with fear

Discussion: Converting OTA Guests

  • What can we do during and after the stay to ensure that the guest books direct in the future
    (educate, incentivize, etc)

What can we do?

    1. Make your own website experience fantastic.
    2. Never lose a customer through your reservation center.
    3. Retain your loyal customers.
    4. Analyze data based on NET contribution, not just ADR.
    5. Minimize OTA availability during sell-out dates.
    6. Create demand through advertising and owned assets.
    7. Consider incentives to OTA guests, to book direct.
    8. Maintain rate parity or offer lower rates


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