Top 10 From Our Marketing Advisory Board

By Juli Jones, CAE, Vice President, Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)

One of the most important things HSMAI’s advisory boards do is work to separate signal from noise — monitoring the many trends and developments affecting the hospitality industry, and focusing on those with the most potential impact. At our Marketing Advisory Board’s (MAB) recent annual retreat, members identified 10 areas that are top of mind for hospitality marketing professionals:

  • Compliance — GDPR, data privacy, ADA
  • Personalization
  • Influencers
  • Voice engine optimization/AI
  • Data analytics and insights
  • Paid media (especially social)
  • Acquisition costs
  • Customer journey
  • Customer behavior (loyalty, reputation, conversion, etc.)
  • Attribution/ROI (modeling, incrementality)

“We had a great meeting to discuss the issues that are most important to hospitality digital marketing,” said MAB member Michael Wylie, head of eCommerce for Interstate Hotels & Resorts. “We had many issues to discuss, but first and foremost was the topic of privacy and how we need to prepare for GDPR-like laws in the States. Data was another discussion topic, as I think we all struggle to various degrees to utilize all of the data we have to make it impactful. And of course, the topic of attribution continues to be a challenge for all us — without a perfect solution, but something we will continue to push.”

Added MAB member Jessica Davidson, CHDM, vice president of digital content, creative, and brand marketing for Wyndham Hotel Group: “HSMAI’s Marketing Advisory Board is committed to shining light on the most relevant trends and imperatives in the field. At our Sept. 12 retreat in Chicago, the board delved into lively breakout sessions, prioritizing topics ranging from the next frontier of voice, to influencer marketing and GDPR. A topic I continue to be excited about is personalization, because it is centered around the guest and delivers upon their ever-evolving expectations. Powering customer experiences in context with data insights gives marketers an opportunity to connect in meaningful ways and build lifetime value.”

For MAB member Jamie Hansen, CHA, CHDM, director of marketing activation for Best Western Hotels & Resorts, this list is all about relevance. “Obviously every company, every hotel, and every individual hospitality marketing professional has their own unique set of challenges, but these 10 issues should be on the radar,” Hansen said. “They’re a mix of seemingly evergreen topics, such as compliance, acquisition costs, and customer behavior, along with emerging trends like voice engine optimization and influencers. Our goal is to produce generate insights that everyone in hospitality marketing will find useful.”

The Marketing Advisory Board will address these issues in depth through various projects in 2019, including HSMAI’s Digital Marketing Strategy Conference and the next update to Hospitality Digital Marketing Essentials: A Field Guide for Navigating Today’s Digital Landscape, the study guide for the Certified Hospitality Digital Marketer (CHDM) certification.

Categories: Marketing
Insight Type: Articles