When everything is worthwhile, nothing is...
By Georges Panayotis, President & Founder of MKG Group & Hospitality ON
The industry's mutation is in full swing and driven by clientele and disrupters. Needs and expectations are diversifying, as are the information channels. This pushes hoteliers to open up and diversify to offer an increasingly broad array of services. These changes within the structures go hand in hand with changes in the city and in the way tourists - business, leisure and combined - evolve.
What would happen to the budget to mid-scale segment on the outskirts of cities where tourists no longer wish to go? How will good locations be determined in the future? Jobs are making a comeback to urban centers to the detriment of business parks. Consumers are returning to what is authentic and local.
Restaurants fave gone from prepared products to sous-vide to return to fresh products, which are a gauge of quality and taste. Customers want to know what they are eating, and more generally what they buy into. They will no longer accept standardized offers no matter how complete they are if we are unable to off er that little something that makes the difference. The extra bit of soul that makes them come back and share us with others.
Ecosystems change in addition to the accommodations themselves. It is important to be aware of these changes in order to make good long-term investments. The second breath that can be given to aging properties may not be enough. It is imperative to think of the hotel within this ecosystem if it is expected to perform.
In the absence of strong products, banalization has resulted in hotel brands being identified by the consumer through Opodo, Trivago, Google, Expedia, Booking, Trip Advisor, Airbnb… Tomorrow, the accommodations that will be able to exist in the face of these giants will be those that are able to provide experiences, products, services with a strong identity, savoir-faire, a recipe and a unique flavor. The competition will be harsh and innovation permanent because in terms of service, the word "copy" is but a banality. These experiences will not belong to a brand or a label, but to a team of local managers able to manage their reputation directly using digital tools. Hotel nights will no longer sell like hotcakes, the experience will be created with hotel staff with the client in real time.
Let us consider that the changes will be radical and the market will not be light handed with those who are unable to anticipate and have not wanted to see the new needs and lifestyles of our consumer society.
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