Warning: Your hotel is losing money by not using big data

The implicit potential of data brings along with it a massive frustration for hotels. Every hotelier knows that they are surrounded by masses of useful data – if only there was a simple way to get it all working and drive incremental revenue while providing great service and recognition.

And it certainly does not help hearing that wretched buzz word “big data” over and over again. What happened to the good old days of great customer service and all will be well?!

Has the battleground shifted from providing great customer service to number crunching machines and data scientists?

Not if you look at the real goal of big data. It really is to understand the customer better to provide them with what they want before they themselves see it as a need. Somewhat spooky alright, but in the days of cookies and retargeted ads following you around, not to mention the ubiquitous presence of google, it should not really be that spooky for a customer to be offered a

Somewhat spooky alright, but in the days of cookies and retargeted ads following you around, not to mention the ubiquitous presence of google, it should not really be that spooky for a customer to be offered a personalised mini-bar based on their consumption patterns.

Big data and data management should speak to that key requirement which has been around since the industry began – to provide great hospitality and customer service. To anticipate and serve the needs and expectations of the customer. If it misses that core objective and relies purely on tech wizardry like online check-ins (convenient, practical and needed, yes, but hardly great service), then we may have lost the plot.

To further add to the long line of hotel technology providers, the latest entrants are the big data solution providers. Do we need yet another segment of providers? Not if you see them as a new segment?

The evolution of data management and analytics providers for the hotel industry like Snapshot brings about an exciting time for the industry. As referenced earlier, there is a need for convergence in the approach to sales, marketing, distribution and revenue management. That being the case, it is an ideal time for hotels to take a collective approach to their commercial approach, and dig deep into their data. This will allow hotels not only to maximise revenue, stay ahead of the changing business environment and raise the bar on customer service.

However, an off the shelf solution will not deliver results without attention to the following:

  1. A well thought out data strategy
  2. Identifying best sources of data relevant to the strategy
  3. Processes in place to capture data and tag the information correctly across the hotel/enterprise
  4. The use of appropriate CRM and sales tools configured based on the defined business process
  5. Teams trained to use them
“Big Data really is about having insights and making an impact on your business. If you aren’t taking advantage of the data you’re collecting, then you just have a pile of data, you don’t have Big Data.” Jay Parikh, Facebook’s VP of Engineering.

But if you are not a Marriott, Disney, Hyatt or Accor, but still want to leverage the amazing power of guest data around you, where do you get started?

We have worked on a comprehensive list of ideas and examples of how to use data better to maximise revenue and guest service at your hotel. While some require complex technology and therefore can be expensive, others require just curiosity and an analytical approach to get started.

Go to the article: 47 ways to make big data work for your hotel

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