Seismic upheavals are leading to a paradigm shift in hospitality.  Companies have clamped down on travel and the AIG effect has battered the meeting and convention business.  Leisure travel is exhibiting anemic and last minute booking patterns.  The Internet keeps bubbling along serving up what seems to be the social media flavor of the month.  It’s no surprise hospitality marketing professionals are thinking beyond hospitality.

It’s times like these – when old ways of solving problems no longer apply – that spawn completely new and creative ways of thinking.  You have a choice:

  • Keep pounding your head against the wall and expecting different results (the definition of insanity), or
  • Look at the market the way it is today, throw out yesterday’s strategies that no longer apply and think different.

And nowhere have I seen this “think different” approach expressed more clearly and succinctly than in a recent Advertising Age interview with John Wallis, Head of Marketing and Brand Strategy for Global Hyatt Corporation.

In the article John talks about how Hyatt has shifted more of its marketing online and how analytics are becoming increasingly important.  Nothing new here, loads of hotels are doing the same thing.

But here’s the catch – and what makes John’s way of thinking so interesting and refreshing.  He says,

“Our goal is to become a database driven company that’s in the hotel business.”

Brilliant!  Hyatt is thinking beyond hospitality, and certainly shifting its strategic approach to the business.

Today business is all about relationships and the most profitable companies have the strongest relationships and the most loyal customers.  And the only way to get there is through integrated 1to1 marketing launched from a marketing database.  You’ll also need highly skilled direct marketing professionals to design and manage your program.

It doesn’t matter if you are selling rooms, widgets or cell phones.  It’s the database and using it to better understand and serve customers and prospects that spells success.

In the meantime John Wallis is my nominee for our First Annual MP&A Think Different Award.  Congratulations John!

What do you think?  Safe Travels – Madigan Pratt

AUTHOR: Madigan Pratt
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