An unapologetic look at Hospitality

Entries from August 2011

Google Hotel Finder (experiment)

August 10, 2011 · Leave a Comment

GoogleGoogle Hotel Finder quietly launched an experimental web site named Hotel Finder. Well not too quietly as I’ve seen more than a few mentions of it online. Just like all of Google’s offerings it has sparse design, offers a few unique tricks and is (for the most part) lightening fast. So if it walks like Google, quacks like Google and smells like Google, then it must be a duck, right? Creating Hotel Finder may have been duck soup for Google (so why didn’t they do it sooner), I think Hotel Finder is pretty much a dead duck (I promise no more duck jokes for the rest of this article).

Google’s new Hotel Finder is “the Google way” to quickly find hotel deals. Like you would expect from Google, it simply works. It being Google, I had expected more. Shamefully there isn’t. Just like with their other new offering Google+, they had plenty of products to copy from and Hotel Finder even more so, looks like a “me too” product.

The lackluster name of the product aside, Google gives us four ways to “find the perfect hotel” (see image on the left). It wouldn’t be Google if they hadn’t improved on the way you can search for a hotel and I must admit this rocks! After you type in the city you want to stay in and your dates you are presented with a map that shows a polygon representing where the search effort was centered. The beauty of it is that you can adjust the shape of the polygon and even add more. This makes searches like “I could stay in uptown or in east but want to avoid downtown” a snap. This would normally take multiple searches, but not with Google because I can lay multiple shapes on the map. Well done! (more…)

Categories: Hospitality · Search
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Get your hotel on the tube – Part II – Lowering the bar

August 2, 2011 · Leave a Comment

I was going to make part two of my articles on video (part one is here) about equipment, but then I realized something… There is a high likelihood that you simply will not consider creating your own video because you are under the impression that it will hurt your brand. Let’s face it, you are not a professional director, much less a seasoned camera operator and you might not even consider yourself good at creative marketing. Using “home brew” video to promote your hotel is going to be a disaster right?

Take a look at the video below. It’s from the Peabody Hotel in Memphis. The Peabody is an institution in the southern US. This world renowned hotel posts home-made videos on YouTube, and so can you.

I could point out that the lighting in that first shot was horrible, or that whoever was operating the camera in the zoo had a serious case of the jitters. But did you notice that? It’s a brilliant video that shows family friendly fun in Memphis while promoting the hotel! The fact that it was produced in-house only adds to the authenticity.

You can do the same thing! All it takes is a half decent camera and some creativity! Start shooting already! And when you are done, let us know where to find your video!

Categories: Hospitality · Social
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