Saturday, November 28, 2015

The blogosphere (by Karina Helin)

Blogs are nowadays ubiquitous on the web. So, whether they are individual or corporate, they certainly intrude into the company’s communication with its audience. Blogs have grown so far into the valuable asset in the promotions of any kind. It is imperative to discuss the role of blogs in the content marketing strategy of a particular brand and back up the theory with a real and efficient example.

To begin with, the notion of blogosphere should be defined properly. What the term implies is the compound of all blogs and the existing interconnections. Blogosphere typically exists either as a connected community or as a full-fledged social network that enables authors to publish their opinions on a regular basis. With all the fuss, controversy, and surrounding blogs, one should take them for serious, as they can serve for either small businesses or big enterprises. Blogs can be perceived as a useful addition to content generation and promotion, besides a company's official website, e-mail promotions, and social media pages.

As far as the value of blogs is concerned, one should see them as an ultimate destination for brand-related content, an additional brick in building one’s digital presence, strengthening website authority and boosting one’s target audience. In addition, blogs are handy in leveraging customer’s awareness to the next level, as they are great in establishing solid rapport with the visitors, keeping the brand on top of people's mind in the moments of the purchase decisions.

Blog of Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants 

Surprisingly, it is a challenging and daunting task to sort out amidst the plentiful of blogs and come up with the ones that have pretty terrific content strategy. As I was searching for decent and credible examples to back up my arguments and thoughts, I decided to access the Kimpton Hotels and Restaurant’s blog. I have found their blog strategy amazingly effective in catering to their respective customers. As we know, Kimpton is a true blessing for serious foodies. It is also a perfect destination for people who are looking for high quality catering services.

It is fun to observe how Kimpton would tackle the challenge. As I dived into the blog content, I discovered that the blog covers the widest array of topics that the audience might get interested in. There are abundant of special offers for different type of parties. What corresponds to the character of  the medium (blog) is that Kimton does not make its posts too uptight or sales-y. Conversely, the content is unconventionally fun and conversational.

It appears to me that the Kimpton’s blog exemplifies the essential relationship between bloggers’ community and a brand. The content strategy is consistent with the interests of the target audience. So, I believe the brand did a great job of listening to the customers’ voices. The blog features not merely relevant, but fermented and funky stuff, so it vividly shows how the blogs should be used for marketing promotions.

In conclusion, I have found the topic blogosphere to be interesting because in class I learned that blogging is an important part of marketing for business. Nowadays, almost most of the population spends time using the internet. Companies can look into blogs and see what customers need and  understand their opinions. Blogs are a good source for business. Not only blogs show news and updates about a brand, they also offer people a place to communicate with one another.

Karina Helin +Cal Poly Pomona 
Now that we all spend some time looking into the blogosphere, what do you think about blogs? What are the interesting and important aspects for businesses to use blogs in sales and marketing? 

About the author: Karina Helin is a transfer student at California State Polytechnic University Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona). She transferred from Pasadena City College, and she is majoring in Hospitality Management. Karina moved to the United States from China in 2006 and received a high school diploma on 2009 from Mark Keppel High School. She is planning to graduate in the spring  of 2016. After graduation, Karina plans to work in the field of sales and marketing or open a small business.

From large banquets memorable business luncheons our Catering menus will please all guests (2015, October 16). Retrieved from

Friday, November 27, 2015

Courtyard by Marriott: A new approach to business fun (by Malia R. Silverman)

When I was researching the most accommodating hotels to stay at for business travel, Courtyard by Marriott comes to my mind, but not necessarily as a first choice. Other consumers too, might possibly think of Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons, Hyatt Place, or similar brands before coming to a Courtyard by Marriott. Recently, Marriott rolled out a new marketing campaign to attract business travelers. With their new series of television ads, Courtyard Marriott has started using a more exciting and enjoyable way to appeal to business travelers.

Courtyard in Syracuse, NY
With a catchy opener in the television ads, a single phrase attracts my attention. It says: “Some people have to travel for work. Some people get to travel for work.” Who would not want to enjoy themselves on a business trip? In three separate ads, the exact same phrase was used in three different scenes of cowboys, Vikings, and English women traveling to work. One of the characters in the scene was traveling miserably, while the others were either drinking champagne, skyping their families, or watching the latest sports updates. The advertisement concludes with a slogan: “Courtyard: Make room for a little fun.” Each ad is expressed in a way that is directed towards the businessmen or businesswomen.

Courtyard by Marriott is showing frequent travelers that it is okay to have fun and enjoy a mandatory business trips. These advertisements highlight free Wi-Fi, comfortable business centers, and meeting spaces at the hotel, and other features that business travelers care about. The advertisements show that business travelers can work in the bistro/bar area, in a casual lounge, as well as in outdoor areas while they are inside the hotel. The advertisements show consumers a completely different style than they are probably expecting from other business hotels.

Personally, I have stayed at Courtyard by Marriott in the past for various reasons, but none of them were for business. I remember that I was feeling comfortable there and that I had access to plenty of amenities for frequent travelers. However, I did not expect that many "cool" features from a Courtyard. With these fun, exciting, and relatable advertisements, Courtyard can relate many of the great amenities the hotel offers to the business travelers. I believe this is a great advertisement because it shows the hotel addressed to the needs of different types of travelers, especially the business travelers. In the end, I would like to conclude my discussion with what Courtyard expressea in the advertisement: “Sometimes it’s the little things that make a BIG difference.

Have you ever stayed in a Courtyard Hotel? Did the hotel meet or exceed your expectations? Do you think that this advertisement method would reach out to more people and convince business travelers to stay in a Courtyard Hotel?

About the author: Malia Silverman is a junior student at the Collins College of Hospitality Management in Cal Poly Pomona. She was originally from Missoula, MT, but moved to California to pursue a college degree. In the future, She hopes to move to the East Coast and work in the lodging industry. Before that, she plans to travel overseas and work in hostels or smaller lodging places in various locations to gain a better feel for every aspect of the hospitality industry. Her favorite thing to do is traveling and staying outdoors.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Loews' Advertising Campaign: Subliminal Messages Included (by Sarah Wendee)

Introduction and Background

As a luxury hotel chain, Loews Hotels and Resorts’ portfolio currently consists of 23 properties located in city centers and resort destinations. The company is previously known for their “Good Neighbor Policy,” a campaign released in 1990. Through this campaign, Loews Hotels vowed to take part in ethical business practices regarding their social responsibilities. The company is also previously recognized for their campaign called “Loews Hotels Minority Business Enterprise Program,” which provided financial support to small businesses owned and operated by women and minorities. Through this program, qualified candidates could potentially initiate a partnership with Loews Hotels and Resorts. Most recently, Loews began “The Room You Need” campaign which was an attempt to target a younger demographic by the use of images portraying models around the age of 35.

The Campaign and Advertisement

Loews Hotels and Resorts Chain recently started an advertisement campaign that uses Instagram images taken by their guests to advertise and sell the use of their hotel. #TravelForReal is the hashtag that was created, allowing the guests to display their experiences from their own perspectives. The campaign uses the slogan: “'Travel For Real' is the real deal, through the eyes, and lenses, of our guests who loved the time they had at Loews" (Gianatasio, 2015). In order to capture this concept, the company selected an array of images from a diversified group of guests. Their portfolio included images such as a young girl at the pool with cucumbers over her eyes, a tattooed young adult playing an instrument in his room, and a gay Mid-western wedding.

Loews Hotel in Hollywood, CA 


Loews Hotels and Resorts is definitely not the first company to promote their business on social media. However, it has proved to be effective for their occupancy rates in the short run. Other companies that have used these methods include, but not limited to, Apple Inc. and Marc Jacobs. While Apple Inc. is using their photos as a representation of the quality of their product, it seems that Loews may have used this Instagram campaign solely to remove themselves from a reputation of being “old-fashioned.”

As demonstrated in the classroom and in the film “Behind Closed Doors”, The Ritz Carlton is able to provide a luxurious experience to their ladies and gentlemen through their ladies and gentlemen’s approach at service. The Ritz Carlton is leading the industry in the luxury segment and is able to break down the elements that make them successful. “Horst Schulze, who made Ritz Carlton into a synonym for high end luxury, describes the paradox of delivering a luxury hospitality experience: highly active yet private, tranquil but exciting, confidently delivered but not arrogant, distinct while being familiar, all the latest technology yet feeling timeless, not trendy” (HSMAI, 2015). Loews Hotels and Resorts, on the other hand, seem to be moving into the direction of trendy. Although the hotel asks for permissions from the guests before broadcasting their images, this concept does not demonstrate privacy.

Is Loews Hotels and Resorts catering their campaigns toward marketing to the right clientele? Perhaps, a luxury brand hotel such as Loews Luxury Hotels and Resorts should not be using Instagram pictures that appeal to the masses and not their specific target market.

Furthermore, the “Travel For Real” campaign featured a “gay Mid-western wedding,” an indication of support for equality and same-sex relations. It appears that the chain is trying to double up on their campaign and “kill two birds with one stone”.  Will this advertising method save the company money or will they end up confusing their clientele? Have they have taken the role of the ethical mediator by brining these ideas to the hospitality industry? Is it the hospitality industry’s job to promote equality or religion, and take a stance in the matter? Is there a specific target market for the luxury segment or is it based on the property?
About the Author: 

Sarah Wendee is a fourth year student at The Collins College of Hospitality Management with an emphasis in private club management. She recently completed an internship at a private club in New Jersey in the membership department and a special events internship at a private club in Rhode Island this past summer. She is an Ambassador for The Collins College, as well as the President of CMAA (Club Managers Association of America). She took HRT 390 to expand her knowledge about the trends and effectiveness of advertising and public relations within the hospitality segment. Connect Sarah Wendee on LinkedIn


Elliott, Stuart. "Lodging Chain Offers ‘Room’ With a View." The New York Times. The New York Times, 07 July 2013. Web. 13 Oct. 2015.
Gianatasio, David. "These Luxury Hotel Ads Use Instagram Shots Instead of  Professional Photos." AdWeek. AdFreak, 25 June 2015. Web. 13 Oct. 2015.
"HSMAI RESORT BEST PRACTICES." Executive Summary (2007): n. pag. The Estis Group. Web. 12 Oct. 2015.
 "Loews Initiatives | Loews Hotels and Resorts." Loews Hotels. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Oct. 2015.
Manalo, Joyce. "Loews Hotels Ad Campaign Uses Guests' Instagram Photos to Refresh the Brand." Skift. N.p., 15 July 2015. Web. 12 Oct. 2015.

* The picture of Loews Hotels Hollywood CA was downloaded from 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Impact of Paris Attacks on World Tourism

Like the #911 Attacks, the Paris Attacks may forever change the way how people travel, would you agree? More so, I think the agreements in European Union and Schengen Visa may also need to be revisited just to keep the borders and Europe safe. 

Let's support our friends in France and hope the world will get healed soon. Visit MultiBriefs for a full coverage of the story. 
#Paris #Attacks #Tourism #Travel #EU #Schengen #Safety 

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Expedia Is Buying HomeAway

The biggest OTA (online travel agent) site - Expedia is buying HomeAway for $3.9 billion, according to NBC News. The sharing economy is growing, with more people using services like Uber and AirBnB. Do you think this is a smart move for Expedia? How does this acquisition help Expedia in defending its leadership position in the OTA market?