Embrace online travel agents' marketing tools to bring guests to the business
Source: The Idea Agency for Copthorne , Author: Posted by BI-ME staff
Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 12:31 pm

UAE. Over the last number of years, hoteliers in the UAE have spent an enormous amount of time dealing with issues involving Online Travel Agents (OTAs), but what was previously perceived as “harming the business”, industry experts have now agreed that utilising their technology will help rather than hinder Hotels.

The shift of sentiment was evident in a panel discussion on the issue “Winning the Online Battle” discussed in this year’s GM Leaders Conference hosted by BNC Publishing, where hoteliers emphasized that it doesn’t need to be a battle but more of a partnership with the OTAs.

“OTAs have the budget to spend on research and development and that is something they do very well, so we can use their functionality and technology to help us bring the right business that we want in at the right time,” according to Glenn Nobbs, General Manager of Copthorne Hotel Dubai who was one of the panelists.

Nobbs was joined by other hotel general managers who discussed how to tackle the challenges faced on the digital frontier from negative online reviews, online bookings, OTAs and how AirBnB has disrupted the Hotel and Serviced Apartment market.

The panel agreed that the industry is now becoming a mature market, as such hoteliers need to take advantage of the available technology within the OTA extranets, their wide distribution across the globe as well as advertising opportunities online directly, while continually improving their own websites.

Nobbs continued: “We need to look at how we leverage what OTAs can bring to the table, and what we need to do as Hoteliers is to connect emotionally with the guest once they reach the Hotel. In addition, hotels need to keep improving their own brand website - if you are not maximizing your word search ability then you will also have trouble with directing more business to your own website and brand earlier. We also need to closely monitor the distribution channels, to see how we are positioned online and maintain rate parity in the public space.”

The annual GM Leaders Conference discussed the key challenges, trends and opportunities in the industry and some of the most influential general managers as well as hospitality figures attended the conference.

Photo Captions:
1. (above)  Glenn Nobbs, General Manager of Copthorne Hotel Dubai
2. (inset)  For illustrative purposes only (File photo)

About Copthorne Hotel Dubai
Copthorne Hotel Dubai, a 4-star property located at the heart of the beautiful Port Saeed, offers 210 contemporary rooms and suites, with views of Dubai Creek and the evening sunsets. The alcohol-free property features three restaurants, swimming pool, health and fitness centre, business centre, beauty salon, spa and meeting rooms. 

Copthorne Hotel Dubai is within 4kms of Dubai International Airport, and a short walk from Deira City Centre shopping mall and Metro Station. Within easy access to Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall, and a number of Dubai’s key attractions.

About Millennium & Copthorne, Middle East and Africa
Millennium Hotels and Resorts is a dynamic, global hotel company, which owns, asset manages and operates over 130 hotels worldwide. With almost 40,000 rooms and a portfolio of brands; including Biltmore, Grand Millennium, Millennium, Millennium Place, M Hotel, Copthorne, Agarwood, Kingsgate, Millennium Executive Apartments and Studio M, that serve different market segments, representing quality and value in every class.

Currently operating 32 hotels in the Middle East and Africa, the Group has an extensive expansion strategy in place, with 40 hotels in the pipeline. Each property in the region is unique, catering to the varying tastes and needs of the international business and leisure traveler but with a consistent promise to provide a first class service and a rewarding experience for guests. Millennium Hotels and Resorts is committed to differentiating itself by embracing the true spirit of diverse traditions, with a sincere respect to historical heritage and local culture.

With the motto “More than Meets the Eye”, Millennium & Copthorne is committed to a customer-centric philosophy and complete guest satisfaction.

For more information, please visit www.millenniumhotels.com

 

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