2018 was an exciting year for us here at Duetto. We launched our Revenue Strategy Platform and completed our $80 million Series D funding with Warburg Pincus - the largest ever non-acquisition investment in a software company serving the hotel industry.
The hotel industry saw big changes too, as the online travel agencies continued to flex their distribution muscles, disruptors such as Airbnb continued to reshape the industry, and mega-companies such as Marriott took action to curb acquisition costs.
There were changes to how we could market too, with the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe, which had ramifications for all global businesses, not just the hotel industry.
At the heart of all this change, we remained committed to helping the hotel industry achieve organizational efficiency, revenue and profitability, both through our product offering and through our thought leadership and continued education of the industry and its next generation of Revenue Strategists.
Here are the five most read posts from Duetto’s blog of the past year. We hope you enjoy looking back on 2018 through these blogs.
2018 was a year for disruptors and innovators. In this blog, and its related whitepaper, we looked at the disruptors to the hotel industry: online travel agents, Airbnb, Google, Facebook et al. and made a call for action for the industry to wake up and make the changes needed in order to compete.
We wrote that a holistic approach enabling collaboration and innovation across all departments of the hotel enterprise needs to be at the heart of your change. By unifying all teams around a common source of dynamic data and a company-wide mission focused on profitability, an organization can become more efficient, drive more direct engagement with customers and ultimately more revenue and bottom-line results.
Our CTO and co-founder, Craig Weissman, took to the blog in September to urge the hotel industry to get more ambitious in its approach to tech. Craig asked:
- Where are the Salesforces, SAPs or Adobes of the hospitality world?
- What is hospitality technology missing that these kinds of platforms provide?
Craig sees a real opportunity for hotels and casinos to transform not just the booking experience, but the entire guest journey, and bring the best elements of modern e-commerce to an industry that already prioritizes taking care of people to earn their loyalty.
In July our CEO and co-founder Patrick Bosworth took to the blog to discuss issues of distribution and the rocky relationship between hotels and OTAs. Taking a closer look at Expedia’s changes to its bundled offerings, branded as Add-On Advantage, Patrick asked, “what is the benefit to hotels?”
Patrick argued that the move by Expedia to package rates could seriously degrade a hotel’s brand by going from an opaque component of a bundle to a searchable price that consumers can compare with other properties’ rates. However, the OTA still gets its commission from every piece of the transaction. That doesn’t seem very fair to us.
2018 brought us new changes in how hotels (and other industries) can market to the consumer, with the introduction of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
In October, guest blogger Sam Weston, Marketing Manager for 80 DAYS, took us through his five stages of personalisation. In his blog, Sam outlined how to personalise messaging, booking, welcome, stay and loyalty, looking at the role technology can play in each part of the guest journey, while staying GDPR compliant.
2018 saw big changes amongst the biggest players in the hotel industry, with Marriott taking the lead in lowering its acquisition costs.
We took a look at how the hotel behemoth was adapting its strategy to reign in customer acquisition costs, starting with efforts to lower the commissions payable to OTAs. With 30 brands and more than 6,500 properties in 110 countries, Marriott certainly has a lot of leverage at its disposal.