A Look at RevitUp:The Holistic Revenue Optimizer Hospitality Needs
After many years of analyzing and reporting on the hospitality industry, it’s not often I’m taken by surprise. Well, I experienced an eyeopener a while back at a meetup of the Pancretan Hotel Managers Association here in Heraklion, Crete. It’s not every day, not one but two hotel managers stand up in the middle of a presentation to applaud a product or service. Believe it or not, that’s exactly what happened when RevitUp Business Development Director, Nikos Giokas rolled out the numbers on the service. The unexpected advocacy of the moment is what prompted this interview. But before the Q & A, allow me to outline some points of pain this new service seems to solve, and a few reasons I think managers are so worked up about it.
A Hotel Revenue Balancing Act
As you know, hotel sales and revenue practices are still in metamorphosis and adapting to dynamic digital trends. We’ve discussed for years now a “balanced” approach which optimizes channel management and other practices. But hoteliers still wrestle with OTAs, tour operators, and travel agents over rate parity and a host of other issues. As a recent example, the rub lately is OTAs not respecting hotel-direct pricing, which exacerbates an already tenuous relationship. News of the recent cooperation between RateGain and Hotelbeds to tackle the rate integrity problem is a prime example. Kevin Duncan, of The Rainmaker Group, recently discussed at HN many other revenue management hurdles including RM roles, tackling transient strategies, technology innovation, and more. There are many such problems, of course, but this brings me to RevitUp’s holistic revenue optimization.
What RevitUp is bringing to the industry is the first service that completes the hotel revenue operation. While there are a multitude of digital and traditional marketing and sales tools and services to establish and “increase” hotel profits, there is not one that optimizes every facet of the process. What I am seeing is a service that not only elevated digital presence management, performance marketing, online distribution, and revenue management but one that puts more human power behind its proprietary technologies.
At this point, I’d like to share the Q & A with Giokas, before summing up my take on this new service. I asked the RevitUp executive about how the service differentiates, integration, and revenue results, scaling the service. Here is our discussion.
A New Perspective: RevitUp Q & A
Phil Butler: What is the core point of differentiation RevitUp represents for the industry?
Nikos Giokas: RevitUp combines the strength of digital marketing that dramatically leverages demand with human power and the power of big data analysis. RevitUp is an especially effective tool for resorts aiming to optimize online revenue. Digital disruption has revealed a massive lack of experienced users of many brand new and highly sophisticated Business Intelligence Tools and Platforms. Our service bridges that gap effectively and at a reasonable and measurable cost.
Phil Butler: So, the service can easily be integrated to work in any hotel operations environment?
Nikos Giokas: RevitUp was developed to perfectly fit 5-star resorts, a collaboration which requires very close cooperation with a resort’s S&M team. Our target is to train hoteliers within three or more years and support them afterward on the digital marketing level only. According to the hotel team’s willpower and loyalty, this target may be achieved sooner or later. We apply an innovative methodology to grow the RevPAR of our hotel clients. Our RM specialists work diligently to make our strong business development and strategy part of the client hotel’s DNA. We design custom eSales services powered by proven marketing strategies that use up-to-date, current distribution channels. And, we stay current so our clients are leading, not following.
Phil Butler: In a previous conversation, I asked you if advanced revenue management methods can be a guarantee of increased revenue. Back then you said your methods can guarantee margins. What's the bottom line for hoteliers using RevitUp?
Nikos Giokas: With full implementation of the basic RevitUp implementation plan, we can talk about a guaranteed result. But for this to happen, first some steady steps are needed in order to change the culture/philosophy of the promotion and promotion logic.RevitUp's primary goal is to maximize profit mainly through retail. But this has a direct bearing on the design and implementation of wholesale. So, if there is an overall sales & marketing plan, then yes we can guarantee success.
RevitUp is the combined energy you create from the expertise of experienced scientists, from research and implementation operations in high adaptability to the ever-changing environment, and finally from data-processing and information-gathering and decision-making systems to the creation of decision-making tools. This action is a great guarantee of success. We would say that the degree of success depends on the degree of trust of our partners and the adaptability of the hotel to the market environment.For this reason, we also believe that the maximum time required to achieve the maximum desired result is 3 years.
Phil Butler: Given that RevitUp optimization is now a proven revenue machine, why haven't more hoteliers adopted the service? Is there a pushback? Or is this a time/scaling issue?
Nikos Giokas: We are focusing, so far, on developing our techniques, our tools, and our team so that we can offer our services on a higher level to all our customers no matter where they are located. With our extraordinary early success, the time has come for us to become more extroverted.
After thinking over my talk with Nikos Giokas, I became interested in the backend of RevitUp technology and the other gears that seem to power the optimizing service. The numbers Giokas tantalized Crete hoteliers with, they just astonished me, to be honest. I thought:
“How can a service add an extra hundred thousand, or one million euro in revenue to already successful hotel operations in Greece?”
To get my answer I called EyeWide Digital Marketing founder Minas Liapakis, one of the visionaries behind the development of RevitUp. A golden nugget surfaced from our brief conversation, something not many digital marketing gurus even talk about. When I asked Liapakis about scaling the business, he told me that technology innovation is not the hurdle for the new service, skilled people are. It turns out that for every 3-5 new clients RevitUp seeks to optimize, the service has to hire and train at least 3 new industry experts. When was the last time you heard of digital gurus throwing people at a problem? There’s a value here I’ve no space to describe in this report.
Developed by the teams at EyeWide Digital Marketing and Plarino Sales, RevitUp is the first revenue optimization service using a truly holistic approach. The service aims to not only manage revenue growth but to educate and train clients, as well. It’s the only service I’ve heard tell of, which reworks a client’s who revenue philosophy while assisting in branding, ADR enhancement, on and offline sales, and the spectrum of components tied to revenue. In short, if RevitUP lives up to its potential, the developers will have created a profits orange juicer or a profit squeezer for hotels.
What seems most significant for me are the proven numbers Giokas put out in the open, the level of technology being used on the backend (a later discussion), and a return to the “human factor” in optimizing hotel business.
This service is one to watch, and this week the Heraklion Hoteliers Association has joined EyeWide Digital Marketing and RevitUp creating a first-ever masterclass for getting hoteliers here on Crete up to speed on total revenue optimization. Expedia Business Development Manager-TravelAds, Vicky Salavati will be joined by primalRES CEO/owner Manolis Lapidakis and other experts on February 13th at the Chamber of Commerce of Heraklion, in the “Kastellaki" hall, for those readers who might happen to be in Greece this week.
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