Nov 1, 2017

Generating and compensating demand. Increasing profits!

The old Yield/Revenue Management idea of a single demand curve is over. We have to generate demand/s with new segments. We have to compensate current demand with the new ones. We have to increase profits. We have to reinvent Yield/Revenue Management.
The other day, I shared with you a couple of tweets where I quoted two sentences from this book 
Why did I highlight this sentences from this book?
Because, I Touristologistly believe, that they represent something fundamental AND usually missing in nowadays training, consultancy, practice of Yield/Revenue Management.
First, the focus on pricing techniques (that are very interesting, except when they are just... mark down the price with low occupancy!) and not the focus on profit.
Second AND MORE IMPORTANT, paying all the attention on CURRENT demand and a lack of focus on demand generation from NEW segments. Segments with different patterns that you can seduce in different ways in order that they appear in your Hotel/Tourism enterprise when is more convenient to you. Furthermore, you can compensate high demand of one of the segments with low demand of the others AND THE OTHER WAY AROUND. So, compensate low demand of one of the segments with high demand of the others. We are wave managers, remember?
Here you can see a graphic representing waves compensation!
Let’s see an example about waves compensation. We can think about Shangri-la... they have a problem of low occupancy (better to say a problem of less than desirable profit? YES!!!) during weekends because most of their customers are business people.
They Touristologistly make the most of nowadays social tendency... I want to be the best professional BUT ALSO THE BEST Parent!!!
So, you can promote to your customers… use you hard earned points of OUR loyalty program to appear in OUR hotel during weekends and enjoy especial activities for your kids. Not only you are a great professional you are the parent of the month! By the way, good example of Versions Of Me !!! The business people doesn’t appear during the weekends BUT yes, the lovely parent!
You can read this article and see how they are practicing these ideas.
“In 2017 Shangri-La Hotel, Shenyang, in Shenyang China, launched its second round of “K20 Activities.” This two-day training program, available to travelers and locals, pairs up to 20 children ages five to twelve with professionals at the property for fun “training” sessions that provide insight into the in’s and out’s of luxury hotel operations.” Interesting practice Shangri-la!!!
At the end of the day, these two ideas conveyed in the two sentences that we have been talking about (improving profits and discovering new segments) are highly connected. When you have new segments, you can sell to them complementary products, as a matter of fact, F&B or beds can be the complementary ones because, for specific segments, the principal components of the product are related with their main motivation.
It can be good service and attitude with their dog as we saw in this example about Disney OR to enjoy doing your favorite activity surrounded with people that like it or want to be a professional or they are already professionals on it… like the example of Chip Conley’s first specialized hotel on Rock music lovers and based on Rolling Stone magazine!!! It is obvious, that in those scenarios, the possibility to sell these extra activities and the basic ones without a discount will increase your TRevPar.
We can also use Long Tail theory for these specialized segments... that means to appear in specialized places where you will pay lower commissions/prices and sometimes don't pay them at all. Let’s see two examples…
For instance, if you create a tour for architects from architect’s point of view, visiting the city where you have your hotel, offering also possibilities to sign in an internship with a local architect studio, etc. You can use Long Tail Theory and try to promote and distribute your package in any Architects university around the world. This promotion and distribution can be a win to win situation for everybody! Here you can find more information about special packages for Architects.
The same can happens, if you create a specialized package for grandparents travelling with their grandkids where you teach mathematics (a fun review for the grandkids and an opportunity for the grandparents to become the perfect tutor) or teaching basic coding to develop a native mobile app (where the kids will be the tutors!!!). To appear in a specialized social networking site as grandparents.com can also generate, again, this win to win situation!
All these actions will also increase your GopPar! More opportunities to generate extra revenues, or commissions for special activities, less cost of promotion and distribution… I love the application of long tail theory in Touristology!!!
Yield/Revenue management is changing a lot and we need YOU to create, improve, define these changes!!! As Alan Kay says “The best way to predict the future is to invent it”!!! We are Touristologist! We do that!!!
Do you want to join US? I will be here, in the cloud, waiting for you!!!!

Oct 9, 2017

Create something ORIGINAL for specialized segments!

These weeks have been very intense! A proposal to create a start-up, a consultancy, the first classes and seminars…. I love intense times related to Touristology!!!
A copyologist’s thought that has appeared over and over during these activities it is the idea that Tourism enterprises Or Tourism destinations must begin the creation, communication and commercialization of Tourism products WHEN THE TOURIST IS ALREADY HERE. How on earth is possible that in XXI century this idea still alive?
I will provide two examples based on my experiences during these weeks. I hope you enjoy them AND HELP TOURISTOLOGY TO DESTROY THIS OLD AND NO PROFITABLE IDEA!!!
The other day, I shared with all of you this video, introducing the AirBnB initiative related to Jessica Parker and asked a simple question… What would you do in order to remain competitive?


I was waiting for examples like… I will look for new segments, I will try to seduce them with this dynamic package using a collaboration with these enterprises… To me surprise, I got some like this:
“I will do special activities for THESE Tourists. As they are here (near to my hotel) I will offer to them complementary activities”
WoW! Offer services to Tourists of other enterprises because they are here?
I don’t think this is, necessarily, a bad idea BUT... is it a Touristologists' idea?
Is it a profitable one?
Is it NOT much better that YOU define YOUR segment then, try to create customized and aggregate components of products in order to satisfy their needs USING the chain of value that you build and control?
AirBnB is doing just this! Define a segment (Jessica Parker’s fans), customize and aggregate components of products to seduce them (meet the star, do the activities that She did in the films…) AND, of course, making the reservation through AirBnB!!! 

Something similar happened to me when I had the opportunity to be an external consultant for a hotel. They spent hours and hours talking about how the hotel is refurbishing its rooms, the swimming pool, the reception… in order to get “quality” Tourism.
How long they talked about segments definition? “0” How many seconds did they talk about distribution channels, meeting places of this segment? “0” How many seconds did they talk about how to help YOUR Tourists to help YOU to create, communicate and commercialize tourism products? “0”
If you want to seduce more profitable Tourists you have to use Touristology’s frameworks! Define a segment, customize and aggregate an offer to seduce them through a chain of value that you control/manage!
To summarize, spend less budget on refurbishing the hotel and more budget on refurbishing YOUR Chain of Value!!!
You are doing the process perfectly BUT you have a confused goal! As Einstein said:
Stop complementing / copying product of other enterprises. Stop refurbishing. Create something original for specialized segments! Don’t be copyologist… 
BECOME A TOURISTOLOGISTS!!!

Sep 6, 2017

Are Augmented Reality (AR) and Machine Learning (ML) the new, new thing?


This summer I have been doing an intellectual travel deep inside Augmented Reality (AR) and Machine Learning (ML). I mean, I listened to videos, read books, talked with experts and in parallel I began to use this knowledge developing native mobile apps and thinking how to apply them to the Tourism sector, What else?!?!?

First, I enjoyed Augmented Reality then, I fell in love (again) with Machine Learning (at the end of the day is a close relative of the Intelligent Systems that I learned doing my doctoral thesis). Soon, I realized that the two concepts are very related and that together can improve plenty of operations and processes of any Tourism enterprise OR Tourism destination!
Augmented reality can bring a customized information to the generic reality that all share. Here you can see a demo…


Machine Learning can create groups (segments!) classifying things, make recommendations (like Netflix or Amazon are doing).
 I love Silicon Valley series, here you can enjoy a (funny) demo of Machine Learning… I hope we can create something more useful in OUR classes/seminars!!!


These possibilities to create groups (classify) people or objects, make customized recommendations, together with the possibility of show this to YOUR Tourists in real-time right here right now, open a lot of possibilities.

Specially, if you are in a trip and you need access to CUSTOMIZED information, products/service, contacts…. Just remember, the winner in tourism will be the ones able to provide support to the Tourist from the beginning to the end of the trip!!! Definitely, AG and ML can help you on this matter!

A very good way to get the customized information in real-time is ML… Now Yes!

AR+ML can be the new, new thing.

But… BE AWARE! Customization without privacy can be a nightmare! The user, at any time can decide if He/She wants to get o send this customized information OR changing the rules of how to customize this information (Versions of Me, remember?).
AR without customization it is NOT the new, new thing! We don’t want generic information about (people, product/services…). We want customized information NOW and HERE! 

AR + ML can allow us to put  web 2.0 business model in action!
Customized: Sure!
Syndicated: Buying/selling anything right here, right now! …wait a moment Jordi… How can you trust the buyer and the seller? How you can create smart contracts between them? How you can send/get payments in a secure way? Ummm does Blockchain ring a bell to you???
Pro-Am: Can we organize a group? Right here, right now???

Let's try to apply these ideas in Marketing OR in Yield/Revenue Management, for instance!

Machine learning can do marketing research in real-time based on your behaviour, in the things that you are saying, in the things that you are watching… right here, right now! Based on this real-time marketing research your organization can customize the 4P’s of Marketing (you know how much I respect this classic of Marketing and how funny I find the people that year after year say that they have find a new P or the 4X’s or the 6 S’s. Classics are classics and they are timeless!).
Let’s see some examples of customization…
You can customize the product/service AND the servuction process.
You can customize the price using some pricing ideas… opacity, up-selling, cross-selling…discounts or customize/new services for a group created by the Tourist!
You can customize the promotion and do it right now, right here using the knowledge that Machine Learning provide and the power of improving the reality that Augmented Reality provide to your apps!
You can change and customize the place using the power that Syndication provides… By the way, do you really thing that the smartphone is the place?
Can you think about one example of how to use Machine Learning and Augmented Reality to improve the processes (Marketing, Yield/Revenue Management, Human Resources… of your enterprise? Do you think that doing that you can earn a competitive advantage?

Come on Touristologists! YOU are the best minds working in the best sector ever! Time to proof it!

We love connecting dots! We are Consilient Thinkers loving to nimbly pass from Web-engineering to Touristology!!!


Aug 1, 2017

Can we afford to have a strategic plan without Touristology?

Few days ago, I was reading an article about if It is important for a city or any Tourism destination to develop a strategic plan.
The author (very intelligent, by the way!) argued that just to decide…
A)  The promotion to do.
B)  How to regulate hotels and apartments.
C)  If fix or not a tax for Tourists.
…maybe it is not necessary to create a strategic plan.
BUT…
What about if the strategic plan adds a little bit of Touristology!?!?!
What about if instead of deciding the promotion in order that other companies bring THEIR tourists here… We help the creation of OUR enterprises focusing on creation, communication and commercialization of OUR Tourists. What Touristologists call a stimulating alternative for everybody!
What about if ALL strategic plans would define how several cities/Tourism destinations could work together each other to create OUR international routes, in order to seduce OUR Tourists at the moment when it is more convenient for each city/Tourism destination?
Do you think that to create, communicate and commercialize international routes can be a magnet for international tourists? Do you think that this is far more interesting for the Tourists and it can also be a bigger profit generator for the Tourism enterprises that just offering other local routes inside the same destination?
Do you think that doing that we can increase the profit of tourism enterprises and create more opportunities for Touristologists working in the best sector ever?
Do you think that doing that we can minimize potential problems as carrying capacity?
At the end of the day, we are waves managers and to learn how to seduce Tourists at the best moment for our city/Tourism destination is our thing!
To me, the question is not if we can afford to have a strategic plan. The question is if we can afford to have a strategic plan without Touristology!!!
Enjoy the summer, Touristologists! And remember… Touristologists don’t relax in holidays just experience Tourism reality, learn benchmarking ideas and propose stimulating alternatives that prove that Touristology is a science!!!

Jul 1, 2017

Is Tourism OUR oil?

The other day, I was learning about Nigeria one of the most powerful countries in Africa. Nowadays they try to create start-ups based on new technologies, they try to educate its population in coding skills… Perfect! 
  
I also learned that they had oil… BUT the enterprises which extract, refine and distribute it are big corporations. So, they have the oil (and all the possible side effects: Pollution, etc) and others get the profit. Well, except for a few local people that allow this and they are also very rich! 
BUT… Jordi it is not this blog about Touristology? 
Calm down, Touristologists! I am the king of metaphors, remember?  For some countries, Tourism is OUR oil! We have to decide if we want to play Nigerian model OR to play the game as other countries (You-know-the-ones) which extract, refine and distribute their own oil! If you manage your Tourism resources, if you select your own segments, if you create tourism packages to satisfy their necessities that will be better satisfied during a trip, if you communicate and commercialize these packages… then you will have YOUR own Tourists. To them you can propose international routes, to them you can sell other Tourism destinations!!! 
Then, we would be a Tourism destination leader!!! 
On the other hand, if you don’t that… the big share of the profits will be for other enterprises which will get the trust and will manage THEIR Tourists… AND local population will get the bad side of the coin…. Carrying capacity!!! Gentrification...! 
Of course, few local people also will get profit and maybe for this reason they don’t see the necessity to propose a stimulating alternative for everybody OR maybe it is because a lack of Touristology’s vision! 
Do you want to play Tourism? Play it in the right way… Touristology’s way! Create, communicate and commercialize your own packages. You will get less side effects, more profits, higher salaries and happier citizens. 
I love Touristology’s games!!!

Jun 1, 2017

Is the gig economy related to generic or specialized Tourism? BOTH!!!

The other day, a group of Touristologists decided to give a presentation about Waynabox a new OTA in the European field selling trips AND SURPRISES!


Interesting enterprise! But… generic! Basically, because the main driver for the Tourists, Airline companies, Hotels and even for the new travel agency is… PRICE! So, in order to be successful, they need economies of scale… meaning a lot of customers.
For the Tourists, you get a surprise trip. Yes, BUT please don’t forget… at a low price!
For the Airlines companies and Hotels, you get customers when you have a low occupancy or empty seats. So, they use a basic principle in Yield/Revenue Management… Mark down the price. I hope that as managers... This is NOT all they will get?
Remember, we are wave managers. So, maybe we can create an example of specialized tourism where less Tourists and more revenues (RevPar, TRevPar) AND PROFITS (GopPar) can be a BETTER or COMPLEMENTARY business model for all the members of the chain of value!
Few days ago, appeared this article by John Hagel about the gig economy. I found the article very interesting! He explains that gig economy can be for “Routine tasks” AND for “Creative problem solving”… I began connecting the dots between trips surprises and opportunities in the gig economy!
To me, “Routine tasks” sounds generic and “Creative problem solving” sounds to opportunities for specialized Tourism!
Are you a specialized freelance with a set of high demand skills? What about you can go to a different city apply your skills and then enjoy the city?
By the way, some people call this combination of business and leisure Travel "Bleisure".
Do you think that companies from around the world are willing to hire the bests experts in the world?
Do you think that this combination of a job and Tourism can seduce these experts?
Do you think that they can use/enjoy an upgrade in the airline company in order to relax before, during and after the trip? Do you think that, for this segment, location and services of a hotel are more important than the price?
Ummmm  it sounds that you can use the butterfly strategy here!!!
Can you describe the chain of value of this segment? Can you describe the operations and processes in order to seduce both the segment and the enterprises? Can you prove that you are one of the best minds working in the best sector ever?
I love Touristology’s games!!! 
What about YOU???

May 13, 2017

Success? Only if you have YOUR own Tourists!!!

The other day (yesterday), I was in class listening to a wonderful presentation about Uber from one of the best Touristologists I have had the privilege to practice intellectual dancing with.
When she mentioned that Uber’s drivers don’t work for the company… “They are their own bosses!!!” I began to think that maybe the drivers believe that they are entrepreneurs… that they have an enterprise….
Suddenly, a metaphor appeared in my mind (I am the king of metaphors remember?) Some Tourism destination and tourism enterprises believe that they are doing well enough even when they don’t have their own Tourists but, instead, Tourists from other enterprise (you can call it a tour-operator, the biggest search engine /Social Networking Site or the new group buying or flash sales site….)…
Let me be crystal clear!
Drivers of Uber… You are not your own boss! You will be your own boss when you have your own customers/tourists!
Tourism destinations/ Tourism enterprises you will be successful when you have your own Tourists! Otherwise, you are the warehouse or the supplier of other enterprises! Nothing wrong with that BUT, we are talking about becoming your own boss or becoming a successful enterprise or Tourism destination, right?
It is NOT about quality tourism… It is NOT about other enterprises bringing their tourists that spend more money…
It is all about who owns the Tourists!
it is all about who gets the trust of the Tourists!
It is all about who gets the profit
it is all about who avoid (or get) the bad impacts (you can call it, carrying capacity)
It is all about enjoying the tasks of Touristologists seducing Tourists from around the world and making them YOUR TOURISTS!

A good example is this article that made me tweet this...

Most of the revenues of Priceline’s group came from outside United States. They sell THEIR Tourists to other countries… to small chains of hotels or independent ones.
For Priceline’s group is far difficult to do that in United States. Big chain of hotels build their own loyalty programs (think about Marriot for instance, with more than 100 million affiliates!) AND ALSO small ones which customize their services thinking about specialized segments:
Here, we talked about Chip Conley and their hotels based on magazines…
Here, we talked about Vail Resorts who target international customers creating a chain of value: An incoming travel agency (snow.com) and a specialized social networking site (epicmix.com). So, building and managing their OWN chain of value!!!
Interested in pass from THEIR Tourists to YOUR Tourists? Don’t’ ask me… Ask any of my Touristologists!!! They are the best minds working in the best sector ever, making wonderful presentations and making me feel the proudest Touristologists builder on earth!!!