2020 technology forecast for hotel casinos

This month, we’re taking a glimpse into the trends, technology shifts and hot topics that will shape the casino hotel market for 2020. This is a critical time for hoteliers to plan for maximizing profit from every segment of their business.

1. New ways to capture total spend.

Revenue associated with rooms is only one piece of the equation for assessing a guest’s total customer value. Purchases at the restaurant, bar, spa and casino can rival if not surpass profit contributed from room charges. By utilizing integrated data in customer relationship management (CRM) software, hotel casinos can determine a guest’s total frequency, recency and monetary value at a glance. The CRM creates one comprehensive profile per guest—the single version of truth – that captures their total spend. This ensures your VIPs are recognized and treated as loyal guests regardless of which hotel they stay at within your group. Strategic revenue management considers the total value of each guest from all available revenue streams – rooms and ancillary sources.

2. Group business is more important than ever.

Looking ahead, group booking pace is positive for 2020.Group business is also a critical component of segment mix and filling rooms during off-peak times – providing a valuable source of revenue and long-term business. It will also be important to evaluate a group’s total revenue opportunity by examining it on an individual level as well. Will attendees buy drinks in the bar? Will they utilize spa services? These factors must also be accounted for when considering a particular piece of group business. A scientific revenue management solution with group forecasting capability accounts for differing lead times between large conventions and local catering groups. It combines external elements such as market conditions and competitive set, with internal data such as group history, and non-room revenue contribution. By leveraging these advanced analytics, once you have conventions on the books, you can fill – and optimize yielding on – unused function space with Non-room utilizing catering groups.

3. Digging into room types & maximizing upsells.

2020 will be a focus year for hotels to really segment their room inventory and create optimal, personalized by room type pricing for guests. This will differ by combination of customer attributes, purchase and product characteristics, and so forth. For example, at booking, offer updated pricing for a longer stay, or an updated room (that otherwise may not get filled). Another example: customer buys a room up front, but between booking and stay – we offer room upgrade or add-on that is personalized (upsell opportunity) that is based on science and not a rule that has been created.

4. Sophisticated revenue management.

To maximize room rates, sophisticated revenue management solutions integrate new and real-time sources of data to drive smarter pricing decisions. Advanced systems factor in competitive rate data, special event dates, day-of-week differences, room type, overbooking, length of stay, buying behaviors and more. Sophisticated systems increase hotel profitability by making the most effective use of guest data, like elasticity of demand and booking patterns. Rates are derived from potential values that offer the greatest opportunity to capture demand at each point along the bell curve of customer price sensitivity and individualized buying behaviors – with even small rate variations making a big difference in profitability.

5. Digging into gaming data to get best customers into the hotel.

Rich guest profiles that utilize integrated data points across hotel systems, including gaming, gives hotel casinos a superpower to truly know their most valuable guests. This allows them to focus marketing activities around this high value segment. Important relationships emerge from seemingly unrelated data that help hotels understand the distinct steps of the gaming guest journey and capture them with the right message at the right time. Through deep dives in things like association mining with gaming purchases, we can further personalize hotel offers by learning what purchases are linked to one another; what customer attributes are linked to purchases and which are not likely to occur by chance. This also lends itself to look-a-like marketing as well – when we know the traits of our best guests, we have the fuel to go out and find others who look just like them.

Angie Dobney Angie Dobney serves as vice president of casino & gaming sales for Cendyn. An industry veteran with more than two decades of experience in revenue management and hospitality operations, she provides hands-on optimization of total resort profit to Cendyn’s industry-leading gaming and hospitality clients.

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