Ask an Expert - Q&A

Ask the Experts

When it comes to revenue management, distribution, and digital marketing topics, Revenue Matters has the answers. Browse frequently asked questions below, or submit your own question. Together, we can help improve revenue performance across the hospitality industry.

Digital Marketing

  • How can you make “Forward to a Friend” work for you?

    A few tips to make “Forward to a Friend” work for you:

    • Be sure to include this link in the footer of your email. This is often overlooked.
    • You can even include a callout in the body of your email asking readers to share news and information with their friends.
    • On the landing page of your website, make sure content is easily shareable.
  • Does your website content need a refresh?

    Here are questions you should ask yourself to determine if your website content needs a refresh:

    • Are the front desk/reservationists fielding multiple calls with guests asking the same questions. This information could be added to the website to help save time for your staff.
    • What is new at your property? Policies, amenities, events, special offers? Make sure these are all on your website.
    • Do you have a blog that helps to keep the site updated with fresh content on a regular basis?
    • How are guests responding to your brand on online review sites? Sharing guest reviews/testimonials can keep the site fresh.
  • How does your BRG help to build your return guest database?
    Your Best Rate Guarantee (BRG) is important to building your return guest database by showing to your direct bookers that your property has the best rates available, or is willing to match any rates if the property is out of parity with the third-party channels. This helps to build credibility and strengthens your relationship with these guests, making them more likely to 1) book again, and 2) recommend you to friends and relatives.
  • How can I make the most of a PPC campaign?
    Pay-per-click campaigns, or paid search advertising, are beneficial for driving awareness and more traffic to your property’s website. Here are a few considerations when building a PPC campaign:
    • Understand that your brand terms will perform better than keyword terms and at a lower cost-per-click
    • Budget more for your keyword terms, as they cost more than brand terms
    • Set up retargeting search campaigns to those consumers who have already visited your website
    • Know that not all conversions will take place online; many conversions will be offline (over the phone), so online results are not a true ROI
  • How can Upselling or Cross-Selling be the perfect way to increase your ancillary revenues?
    Upselling or Cross-selling can help increase ancillary revenues by influencing the consumer to make an additional purchase when they are already in the buying mentality. When you offer an alternate product (for an upgrade) or complimentary product for their vacation or business-related hotel stay, this provides an opportunity for the property to make additional ancillary revenues.
  • How can you use Metasearch to your advantage?
    Metasearch is an essential way to compete with third-party distribution sites and drive more direct bookings to your property. Since consumers are price-sensitive, having a direct booking option in a one-stop shopping environment can help establish trust by having price parity across channels. This can also reduce your cost per booking by increasing visibility.
  • What is the purpose of a “Teaser?”
    A “teaser” is intended to provide just enough information to pique the interest of the consumer to make them want to click to read more. This can be done on websites as an introduction to a blog post or special offer, in pre-header text in an email (what appears after the subject line), or any other instance where there can be a lead-in to the main offer, description, or content.

  • What is a Hotel Marketing Mix?
    A Hotel Marketing Mix is the combination of tools and strategies a marketer uses to influence demand. This is also known as the 4 P’s of marketing: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion.

    • Product: Everything that makes your hotel stand out from the competition.
    • Price: The actual price a consumer pays for the hotel room.
    • Place: This is also referred to as Distribution in hospitality marketing, a.k.a. on which channels is a hotel bookable.
    • Promotion: How you are driving demand to your hotel — organic website traffic through a well search engine optimized website, digital advertising, metasearch listings, email marketing, social media, print ads, etc.
  • If I were to pick one Social Media Platform to make my mark, which would get me the most reach?
    Ultimately, having a presence on the “Big 3” — Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter — is the safest bet for organic reach to all ages and demographics. These sites are crucial no matter what your audience focus might be and if you have a presence on each, you are making sure you aren’t leaving out a potentially profitable audience that you might not otherwise be reaching if you limit yourself to one channel.
  • Why is it important to answer ALL reviews, both Good and Bad?
    Guest reviews are increasingly important because they show trust for other consumers with firsthand recommendations and experiences. It is important to respond to as many reviews as possible, both good and bad, because hotels that leave management responses to reviews are 21% more likely to receive a booking inquiry through that website.
  • What is the best way to market to Past Guests/Build Loyalty?
    Building loyalty is the #1 way to drive increased revenue for your property. The best way to build loyalty is to nurture the existing relationships you have with past guests and prospects through targeted email marketing, engaging social media posts, and interactive marketing campaigns designed to generate response from your past guests.
  • What is a Warm vs. Cold Audience on Social Media?
    The Cold Audience are those who haven’t seen or engaged with your content. The Warm Audience are those who have engaged with your content, visited your page, or watched more than three seconds of your video.


  • Are you keeping tabs on your Competitive Set?

    Keeping tabs on your competitive set is crucial to ensuring you are priced competitively and gaining your fair share of business in your market. This includes monitoring:

    • Pricing
    • Minimum Lengths of Stay
    • Lengths of Stay Discounts
    • Cancellation Policy
    • Deposit Policy
    • Pet Policy


  • Are you making good use of your channel management opportunities?


    • Check for parity
    • Check for promotions that will benefit revenue
    • Make sure inventory matches your strategy


    • Check your extranets for suggested opportunities
    • Review OTA production vs direct production
    • Review all findings on calls


    • Set up call with your OTA contacts
    • Set up strategies for future need months
    • Ask team members for success and failures in regards to OTA strategies
  • What is the benefit of using a CRS?
    The CRS can connect the hotel’s property management system to every distribution and sales channel the hotel might use. This ensures that all reservation data is safely recorded and stored in the hotel’s own system, meaning inventory will always be accurate and up-to-date everywhere it needs to be
  • What makes a Direct Booking so cost-effective?
    Direct bookings are not only more cost-effective, but the preferred channel to capture a booking due to the fact that you are getting the greatest value for that booking as possible. When bookings are captured through third-party channels, there are often commissions or additional fees (sometimes multiple fees) associated with that booking that are owed as payment to the channel for providing the booking.
  • What does fair share mean on an OTA?
    Fair Share on an OTA is based on the defined competitive set for the property on the OTA. Based on the property’s number of rooms, a fair share number is determined. If your property exceeds that number, you get more business from the OTA than your competitors, meaning you have more than your fair share.
  • What is the Billboard Effect?
    The billboard effect is when a property experiences a rise in direct bookings after partnering with a 3rd party booking channel. The rise in bookings is due to new guests who have been introduced to the property via finding it on a 3rd party booking site. In this case, the guest may primarily use a 3rd party for their initial research but then use the direct website to finalize their booking.
  • What is a fenced rate?
    A fenced rate is a rate that requires certain requirements to be met to be booked. A common example would be advance purchase offers that must be booked within a minimum lead time. The popularity of a fenced rate can suggest if your market is price sensitive.

Revenue Management

  • What is the state of your RevPAR?

    Your RevPAR, or Revenue per Available Room, is an indicator of how profitable your property is. It can help you identify trends and patterns in your performance, make decisions about pricing, and even optimize operations.

    RevPAR serves as a fundamental indicator of a hotel’s revenue-generating ability, operational efficiency, and competitiveness in the market, making it a critical metric for both internal management and external stakeholders.

  • How do I find out what my GOPPAR is?
    GOPPAR is a figure calculated by subtracting operating expenses from gross revenue and dividing that by the total rooms available. This goes a step further than RevPAR because it not only considers revenues generated but also factors in the operational costs related to those revenues.
  • An Integrated Revenue Strategy certainly lends a hand to improved efficiency, but what is it?
    An Integrated Revenue Strategy combines the revenue-building efforts of Revenue Management, Distribution, and Digital Marketing to drive more direct, non-commissionable revenue for your property. Having all channels integrated under one strategy streamlines efficiencies with a single point of contact, and faster speed to market, all resulting in optimized revenue growth.
  • How do you measure your Group Booking Pace?
    The speed at which bookings materialize for a specific arrival date. For example, if you typically pick up 20 rooms within 30 days of arrival and you pickup up 30, you have a positive pace.
  • How can Predictive Analytics help your revenue strategy?
    A form on business analytics using machine learning to generate a predictive model for the hotel. In layman terms, the data from the hotel is analyzed by a computer to give recommendations on strategies.
  • What does your “MPI” mean?
    Your Market Penetration Index, or MPI, shows how well your hotel’s occupancy is performing to a set list of competitors.
  • What is so important about an “SOP?”
    An “SOP” or Standard Operating Procedure, is important because it eliminates any uncertainty when it comes to completing certain tasks or assignments. This results in fewer mistakes in whatever tasks are being completed.
  • What does “RevMAX” mean to you?
    A collaborative meeting with sales and revenue management to align plans that focus on increasing revenues both short term and long term. Consideration for all revenue streams for the hotel are discussed to ensure the best match. The team evaluates each piece of business to ensure the most optimal patterns and revenues are reached to target the goals of the property.
  • What are the benefits of creating an overbooking strategy?
    There are several benefits of creating an overbooking strategy, including:

    • Maximize total capacity and increase revenue.
    • Identify historical data patterns of cancellations and no-shows to apply to the overbooking strategy and uncover opportunities for future strategy.
    • In many cases, sending a guest to another hotel, offering a future discount, or providing alternate compensation costs less than an unoccupied room.
  • Why is Forecasting so Important?
    Forecasting allows hotel management to anticipate future events and plan for them ahead of time. Accurate forecasts are invaluable because they allow the hotels to prepare for bad news while also capitalizing on high-demand periods.
  • What is Perishable Inventory?
    It is the concept that there is a limited window to sell a product or service, and once the window closes, the ability to sell that product or service is gone. If you miss the opportunity to sell a room on Monday, you have missed that opportunity forever.
  • What is the difference between Revenue Management and Revenue Strategy?
    Revenue management started as a role to manage rates and inventory in a more reactive position. It has grown due to the availability of data to incorporate information on market demand, market segments, competitor rates, historical data, events to help understand a more accurate market view to target the right guest and when.

    Revenue Strategy uses proactive approaches for long-term revenue management by utilizing marketing automation, sales effectiveness, and analytics. The goal is to sell the right product to the right customer at the right time for the right price. Working in conjunction with marketing to incorporate data technology to enhance guest experiences with customization options for promotions and personalize retargeting, grow and identify feeder markets, and utilize distribution data and pick up for digital marketing has created an all-encompassing approach to predict and anticipate guest behavior. This approach leads to optimizing pricing, product availability, and distribution to maximize incoming revenues.

  • What first step should I take to start optimizing my hotel revenue strategy?
    Clean systems are essential to creating a firm foundation. Are all the rate plans and room types properly configured between your PMS and CRS? Are there rate plans no longer in use that need to be set inactive? Are restrictions and strategies flowing correctly between the two systems? Once you have a clean system, you can build on your strategy, knowing you have a firm foundation.

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