New book gives hospitality execs expert view of evolving market

Hotel Pricing in a Social World explores how changes in consumer behavior put pressures on pricing, tactics for creating new revenue

Hotel revenue management isn’t what it used to be. With today’s highly informed, connected consumers, pricing strategy alone can’t ensure room occupancy. A new book from analytics and revenue management expert Kelly A. McGuire, PhD, throws out a lifeline.  Hotel Pricing in a Social World offers strategies to not only understand this new digital world, but also harness it to create new opportunities.

Social platforms lay out service triumphs and mistakes for all the world to see, making pricing and competitive positioning more complicated by the day. Online travel agencies present price, location and feature comparisons across the market. Review sites integrate with Facebook and other social channels, so potential guests can consider the opinions of their friends, or even friends of friends. And all this activity is shifting to mobile at lightning speed.

Yet, revenue managers still have to build profitable pricing strategies. The market has changed, the technology has changed and the revenue manager has to change as well. Under McGuire’s guidance, they can begin to:

  • Anticipate the opportunities that come with evolving pricing and revenue management analytics.
  • Embrace new data sources to improve day-to-day pricing decisions and broader pricing strategy.
  • Promote an internal, cross-functional framework for interaction with connected customers.
  • Understand the technology and business process limitations that influence where new techniques will sow the greatest value.
  • Attract and build the talent, skills and organizational structure to advance today’s revenue management
  • Communicate their value to stakeholders outside of the revenue management function.

McGuire travels the world, speaking with revenue managers and experts about how data and analytics can move their businesses forward. In this book she collates her decades of experience to provide distinct direction on how to use innovations in analytics, processing power, data management and data visualization to create new revenue opportunities.

“This book is less about the practice of revenue management itself and more about the implications of changes in consumer behavior on revenue management,” said McGuire. Armed with her advice, revenue managers will be prepared to participate in conversations not just about the revenue management system, but also about the hotel’s broader data, technology and business strategy.

“My aim is to inspire revenue managers to evolve with the market place and consumer,” she added. “It is an exciting time to be in revenue management. But unless revenue leaders are poised to manage pricing in a social world, they and their companies will fall behind”

Kelly McGuire leads the SAS Hospitality and Travel Global Practice. She is an analytics evangelist, helping SAS’ hospitality and travel clients realize value from big data and advanced analytics initiatives, and build a culture of fact-based decision making. Before joining SAS, McGuire consulted with Harrah’s Entertainment on restaurant revenue management strategies. Prior to that, she was a Senior Consultant at Radiant Systems. She also worked for RMS (Restaurant Revenue Management Solutions). McGuire has a BS from Georgetown University and an MMH and PhD in revenue management from the Cornell School of Hotel Administration. Her research has been published in the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, Journal of Pricing and Revenue Management, Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research and the Journal of Service Management. She is also a frequent contributor to industry publications, speaker at industry conferences and is co-author of the SAS/CHR blog The Analytic Hospitality Executive.

About SAS

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