Predictive analytics in the hotel industry to reach the right target
The fast growth of online travel retail and review sites made the hospitality industry has a wealth of collecting as much data as possible to find such patterns on customer behavior, buying patterns and even cancellation or lost sales data. All that has changed is the increased data storage capacities and the accessibility of this data, especially with the birth of the cloud, and has been combined with improvements in the accuracy of data mining and analytics tools.
Predictive analytics can be used in any area of hotel operations, like be used to sell restaurants, rooms, golf, spas, meeting spaces. Smart hoteliers are already realizing this and integrated resorts can use predictive analytics to promote and price a wide range of downstream ancillary services. By knowing who will be visiting your hotel, and what their demographics, interests and potential spend are, hotels can predict how to promote and price spa treatments, golf tee times, shows and entertainment options, for example.
The hospitality and travel market have large amounts of data, but historically there has been a lack of co-ordination between hotel departments, individual hotels and even hotels within the same chain or group. Even the databases used by hotels create silos. Customer relationship management (CRM) systems, reservation systems, and loyalty and marketing programs rarely work with revenue management and sales platforms.
Our industry generates a wealth of information about their clients, which helps building a picture of who your buyer persona is. Some of the most traditional and basic data you can capture: country of origin; booking channel; time of booking (seasonal changes); lead time; room rate for the booking; type of room booked; length of stay; responses to marketing campaigns and discounts; direct email marketing; competitor performance; destination data (tourist arrivals, tourist expenditure, room nights).
Concluding, use the Property Management System (PMS) as your number one data source, and analyzing and making the customer patterns you can build buyer personas considering the factors above-cited to construct a five topic predicting process for your hotel:
1. Predict trends
2. Understand customers
3. Improve business performance
4. Drive strategic decision making
5. Predict behaviors