Each Friday, the HotelNewsNow.com editorial staff picks the most compelling (or downright gutsy) quote and reader comment from the previous week.
Quote of the week
The U.S. hotel industry’s traditional core target market of white males is trending downward, and many hoteliers either are ignoring this fact or have yet to implement the steps necessary to make up market share, writes HotelNewsNow.com’s Patrick Mayock.
The reasons for this oversight are many but underlying the issue revolves around diversity. While the male Caucasian population is decreasing, many otherwise savvy executives have yet to recognize the millions of women, Hispanics, African-Americans, Asian-Americans and members from the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community who are replacing them.
It’s a matter of dollars and sense, according to panelists during a session titled “Targeting Unique Markets to Develop New Business” during this month’s International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show in New York, noting many executives don’t realize the economic impact of these groups, nor do they have the good sense to act on it.
“It’s the right economic thing to do,” stressed Thomas Mathes, GM of Kimpton’s Eventi Hotel. “We’re all businesses, so there’s nothing altruistic about it.”
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Read “Multicultural marketing key to new hotel demand.”
Comment of the week
As if the street-corner hotel business wasn’t already competitive enough, a new third-party intermediary will undoubtedly turn up the heat. Newly launched BackBid allows hoteliers to essentially steal—for lack of a better word—guests from hotels down the street by offering a more appealing stay, writes HotelNewsNow.com’s Jason Q. Freed in a blog.
How it works: Travelers book a room and then send their confirmation number to BackBid. Hotels in the surrounding area are then able to query guests from BackBid’s database and bid, or pitch, to that traveler with value-adds and private rates. The consumer can pick his or her favorite bid and change their reservation. The new reservation is pre-paid and non-refundable.
Commenter NKY Hotel believes the BackBid process is outrageous:
“How very vicious. When is a hotel going to be free of vultures and allowed to earn a decent profit? I don't know of any other industry that has so many 3rd parties all trying to get in on something that a company sweats over daily just to break even in this economy. Housekeepers physically giving their all, front desk dealing with customer service face to face... and companies like this sit back, set up a web site (sic) and reap rewards. Vultures!”
Read “The fight for guests heats up.”