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Two Llamas Do The EdgeWalk!

Last Friday, August 26, two of our llamas completed the EdgeWalk around downtown Toronto's CN Tower.  Lindsay Tessis (pictured left) and Allison Wills (pictured right) were both harnessed in as they walked the full 360 degrees around the iconic skyscraper, looking out to a clear sunset and the city in all its glory some 360 meters up in the air.  Both came back ecstatic from the experience and would recommend it for anyone who has the time.  Congratultions on the successful EdgeWalk!

PRTwo Llamas Do The EdgeWalk!
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Wish You Were Here

One of our llamas is having her first solo art show!  Sam Mogelonsky, who completed her BFA at Queen’s University and her MFA in London, England, will premiere her sculptural exhibition entitled “Wish You Were Here” from August 31st to September 24th.  The goal of the show is to transport the viewer into an imaginary space built around the travel narrative through the construction of island sculptures merged with humorous kitsch objects.  This ‘Glitter Island World’ is made from wood, plaster, paint, epoxy sculpt, tinsel, ribbon, glow wire and varnish.  One of the islands is even built on a robot!  To complete the theme, Sam has included postcards, travel trinkets, her alabaster roses, a molten bronze typewriter and a brilliant blue ‘Wish You Were Here’ sign made of acrylic and neon.  All told, this exhibit represents well over 500 hours of Sam’s time outside of office hours.  As for the …

PRWish You Were Here
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The Independence of Loyalty

Independent hotels boast that they offer a one-of-a-kind experience. The linchpin counter for the big chain hotels has always been their tried-and-true loyalty programs, leveraging their scalability to keep customers faithful. It was an area where independents could not compete!  Well, thanks to some new entrants to the loyalty program game as well as the revitalization of older systems, this is no longer the case. And all of this is making for a very interesting landscape in the hotel industry. Since their inception, chain loyalty programs have become behemoths in their own right. True, guests can cash in their points for hotel rooms, and often flights, car rentals, cruises, gift certificates, golf, and other palpable experiences, but, the redemption process is oftentimes limited and confusing. In the end, travelers either use their points inefficiently, or just let them accumulate; residuals acting as rolling “free finance” (or future liability) for the …

Larry MogelonskyThe Independence of Loyalty
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Interview with Felicia Yukich, Manager of Social Media Marketing for Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts

Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with Felicia Yukich of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts (FSHR) Corporate Head Office, to discuss her role as the Manager of Social Media Marketing.  Here’s what she has to say about how FSHR has become a leader in the online realm and some of the finer points of this current trend. 1. Tell us a little about yourself.  How did you become the Social Media Manager for FSHR? My recent transition from Manager Interactive Marketing to Manager Social Media Marketing recognizes our commitment to leadership and innovation in the space. This role is an all-new global role for the company. As a previous member of the Four Seasons Corporate Public Relations team, I managed the PR and social media launch for new hotel openings and worked with our global agencies to coordinate strategic plans, including media events in the US and Brazil …

Larry MogelonskyInterview with Felicia Yukich, Manager of Social Media Marketing for Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts
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Let’s Make Love: How Hotels Can Target the Niche Market of Honeymooners

Does your hotel accommodate weddings?  If yes, I’ll bet that management keeps a record of how many weddings they have held in the past twelve months, and I’ll double down that they have a calculated goal for how many they expect for the upcoming years.  The fact is that weddings are big business for all involved, and are given their just dues in the corporate limelight. But as the shorter sibling to this gigantic revenue maker, honeymoons are often overlooked as a niche market for hotels to target.  Do you keep track of how many honeymoons were held on property in the past twelve months?  More importantly, do you have a specific strategy in place to attract honeymooners for the near future?  Collaborating with Kristin Stark, the owner of Honeymoon Wishes, I’d like to explore this issue and hopefully draw upon some useful pointers for hotels looking to expand their …

Larry MogelonskyLet’s Make Love: How Hotels Can Target the Niche Market of Honeymooners
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LMA Launches a New SuperDogs Web Site with More Bark and Bite!

For over 40 years, the official SuperDogs® have thrilled over 35 million dog lovers and are the highlights at several international events including the Calgary Stampede, the CNE, the PNE and America’s Family Pet Expo in Los Angeles. The new website is a complete redesign from the ground up in line with the new branding standards and color palette developed by LMA. With a fully optimized site architecture and navigation module powered by ExpressionEngine2, the SuperDogs team is able to update and edit nearly every part of the site, including the homepage slide rotator, pictures and information about featured SuperDogs, and complete social media video integration. Check out the ‘pup’ular new site at www.superdogs.com!

Jerry GrymekLMA Launches a New SuperDogs Web Site with More Bark and Bite!
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Black Friday – Make It Green for Your Hotel

Make no mistake, Black Friday is a beast. For those unfamiliar, I’m not referring to the stock market crash in 1929, but rather the busiest shopping day of the year occurring over the U.S. Thanksgiving long weekend. The day is hugely important for retailers with billions of dollars in sales, and I see no reason why your hotel can’t also capitalize come November 25, 2011. But first, let’s review some history and how it ties into present day consumer expectations. The Thanksgiving weekend is the traditional time for people to start their Christmas gift purchases, something established long before the official naming of this grand sales event. Our current iteration of Black Friday originated in Philadelphia in the 1960s when the combination of fans for the annual Army-Navy football game and shoppers drove the city into a bottleneck. It has since evolved to more generically reference the bedlam at malls …

Larry MogelonskyBlack Friday – Make It Green for Your Hotel
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Inn at a Glance Launches New Service Alerts Feature

Version 2.5.3. has now officially launched, fit with the new Service Alerts feature, which gaurantees that managers are able to respond to guest requests and maintenance issues in the timeliest manner possible. This recent system enhancement provides the following user benefits: Specific issues can be identified and brought to the attention of managers across all departments, allowing for a coordination of efforts. As soon as problems are relayed to hotel staff, the front desk is also notified. Resolved and unresolved items can be organized by a color-coded system. Past service alerts are archived in the system, allowing the property to keep an accurate record of all items. Contact our sales team to try a free 30-day trial of the Inn at a Glance software suite and see for yourself how Service Alerts will help your hotel.

Jerry GrymekInn at a Glance Launches New Service Alerts Feature
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Going Mobile: Website or App?

Going mobile is bar none an important topic for 2011 and many years to come.  Just this past week, I was asked to review a mobile application (app for short) on behalf of a client property considering its options for the near future. The main question on their minds was: Is it worth it? I gave an immediate affirmative – it’s where the technology and customers are headed. At this point, however, a more critical question to ask is: Should you strive for a full-scale native app or a mobile version of your website? The Mobile World For those of you lacking a Blackberry, iPhone or Android, I’m sorry to say that you are now on the losing side of this battle. Your customers nowadays, with smartphones in tow, have more computing power in their purse or pocket than was available in a desktop computer five years ago. It’s no …

Larry MogelonskyGoing Mobile: Website or App?
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Puppy Love: The Why and How of Making a Hotel Pet Friendy

People travelling with their pets can mean big business if you do it right.  By now it should be common knowledge for hotel marketers that this is a prominent, and still growing, segment of travelers.  If you need statistical proof of this, a google search will suffice. My purpose isn’t to restate the numbers behind this trend, but to address the next steps for hoteliers wanting to target this niche group of consumers.  And for others who might be reluctant to shift into the pet friendly business, hopefully I can convince you otherwise. To start, let me dispel some cons.  True, pets require special attention and a particular set of skills, both equating to further costs.  However, vacationing owners fully expect to pay a little extra for accommodating an animal, effectively neutralizing any additive expenditure.  Plus, we’re dealing with methods to attract new customers and drive up occupancy. Next, the …

Larry MogelonskyPuppy Love: The Why and How of Making a Hotel Pet Friendy