Improving hotel marketing and performance in stages with Hadoop and big data
Managing an international, multi-brand hotel group involves tracking an enormous number of metrics, providing an opportunity to use Hadoop and big data to improve both operational and executive-level business performance. For InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), which manages 4,602 hotels worldwide and registers 150 million room night sales a year, the use of data analytics has improved targeted marketing and bottom line results.
"Service-oriented data-driven organizations such the InterContinental Hotel Group are a great example that big data is helping any industry become better, more efficient and drive better customer experiences," Smart Data Collective contributor and big data executive Mark van Rijmenam wrote in a recent post.
In a video for AllAnalytics explaining his company's approach to becoming a data-driven organization, David Schmitt, IHG's director of performance strategy and planning, explained the transition the brand has undergone. IHG began by tracking operational performance to help improve in-the-field tactical decision making and marketing before expanding to enterprise analytics to evaluate how to build brands in specific countries, for instance. It is now employing predictive analytics to better anticipate guest behavior.
"We want to leverage our analytical expertise and massive amounts of data to better understand how the collective efforts of our global organization work together to drive the performance of our brands," Schmitt explained.
One of the most important elements to analytics success is committing to an imperfect project and continually experimenting, Schmitt said. He recommended organizations start small and avoid seeking perfection. Since tools such as Hadoop are constantly evolving, business analytics approaches will change over time as well. Rather than waiting until they feel comfortable using advanced functions or have the perfect data set, organizations can implement initial Hadoop clusters and begin exploring. Starting with the data and tools available, companies can get a better feel for analytics and Hadoop file systems.
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