When I first started working in the hospitality industry, I was constantly searching for terms that I had never heard before. ‘rev PAR’, ‘OTA’, ‘ADR’… As I dove into the language of hotels and learned more about the challenges associated with the industry, I realized how important it is to have vertical solutions such as Revinate. Why? Hoteliers have very unique challenges and needs. Very few industries are winning and losing sales as a result of online reviews to the degree that hotels are.
This industry demands customized solutions. The value chain consists of owners, asset managers, brands, management companies, and hotel operators to name a few. All these folks need data presented through their specific lenses/functions. Companies that aren’t laser focused on hotels can’t give every constituent what it needs.
Hoteliers across the value chain need to know how the public perceives their hotels and their competitors. They need a platform to engage with their influencers and see whether the effort pays off. They need to know how their reviews are effecting their market ranking. They need to track their success on Facebook and Twitter and know how new hotel programs and policies are working. But how do you characterize a software solution that does all that?
At a briefing last week with Forrester Analyst, Henry Harteveldt, we saw our solution through the fresh eyes of the travel industry’s leading expert. In the first few minutes of seeing Revinate, Henry said, “it’s Business Intelligence that you’re selling.” We have been grappling with our ‘category’ for a while because we do more than a listening platform or a social media monitoring platform. We are also way bigger and more powerful than a data aggregation service.
I love the idea of being a ‘business intelligence’ provider for a number of reasons. First, and most obviously, we do provide business intelligence. We like to think of our solution as the next generation of Guest Satisfaction. We can tell you, on any given day, what people are saying about your hotel and how you stack up against your comp set on dozens of different measurements that impact customer loyalty and sales. Hospitality is an industry that’s already adopted and operationalized traditional Guest Satisfaction Surveys as a critical data source. Today, with online reviews impacting booking and brand more than other other factor, Revinate is as critical, if not more critical than traditional GSS.
Second, no one likes to take risks, especially in this economy. Business Intelligence gives you the data you need to make informed decisions. Our customers have used the data in Revinate to determine whether they need to refurbish rooms, or change parking rates or the internet policy, to name just a few uses.
Third, the hospitality industry likes to standardize on solutions. Just look at the Smith Travel Research (STR) Report as an example of a solution that has been adopted by virtually every hotel. The STR report is a quantitative report showing hotels how they benchmark against each other across key operating metrics. Revinate’s goal is go deeper by providing qualititative data in addition to quantitative data, allowing hotels to know how people feel about their properties vis a vis their comp set, city, market, segment or brand.
Finally, and most importantly, business intelligence isn’t something that’s just used by one department, such as PR or Web. It’s something that benefits every department across all organizations. So here’s to Revinate, Business Intelligence solutions for hoteliers.