I’ve always looked at individuals in the hotel industry as an optimistic lot, always looking at the glass as half-full even as a global economy threatens to collapse right in front of them.
But like teenagers watching a horror moving with one eye shut and clinging to anyone who happens to be in the vicinity, hoteliers appear to have a penchant to sometimes test the limits of their dark sides.
That became pretty clear late last week. There was quite a surprise for us at HotelNewsNow.com when we looked at the readership patterns of two articles written by Jan Freitag, STR’s VP of business development. The articles addressed the two sides of the “Is the hotel industry in recovery mode?” argument.
In “Pro: Blue skies ahead (the worst is behind us),” Freitag lays out five reasons why there is a “sustainable recovery” going on—including increasing corporate profits, rising room rates and the return of transient business.
In the counterpoint titled “Con: The sky is falling (the worst is still to come),” he explains his five reasons why there is no recovery—including how New York’s performance skews the overall numbers, the effect of having no foreseeable increase in group business will have on the industry and easy year-over-year comps.
The surprise: More than 20% more readers read the “Con” article than the “Pro” article. This occurred even though the “Pro” article was listed first in the Daily Update newsletter. More people also were compelled to leave a comment on the “Con” article.
The moral of this blog is that while we all want a recovery for the hotel industry to be swift and firm, there’s an obsession with the majority of us that wants to be ready if Freddy Krueger lunges out of the shadows with his razor nails a-slashin’. Chances are slim that he’s going to show his ugly face, but it looks like a number of us at least want to be emotionally prepared if he does.