World Panel
Viewpoint23 December 2019

Is Personalization in Hospitality Dead or Alive?

Digital Marketing in Hospitality

— 12 experts shared their view

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This viewpoint was created by
Max Starkov, Adjunct Professor NYU Tisch Center for Hospitality and Hospitality & Online Travel Tech Consultant
Frederic Gonzalo
Travel & Hospitality expert. Digital Marketing & Strategy Speaker and Consultant

I remember hearing this mantra for the digital age and how personalized marketing would become the ultimate tool to *drum roll* ... get the right message, to the right person, at the right time, on the right platform. Does that ring a bell? Well, it should because this was being said... almost twenty years ago!

Then I remember attending CRM conferences back in 2007, 2008 and 2009 and this was all the rage. Whatever happened since? Oh sure, there is some personalization happening with some hospitality brands able to recognize a client at check-in, and even sometimes before. This, in turn, can lead to memorable experiences when arriving at your room and they already know you like Pinot Noir (and prepared a bottle for you) or down-duvet pillows (which are already on the bed).

So machine learning and artificial intelligence are about to revolutionize this once again, just like sophisticated CRM tools, social media, and other cloud-based solutions were supposed to do in the past decade, if not more? Allow me to be on team skeptic, here.

Not that it isn't a noble or worthy objective. It truly is. The problem lies unfortunately in the near-impossibility to get a single view of the client across multiple touchpoints, online and offline. And I don't see this becoming less of an issue, all the contrary in fact.

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