To make them more appealing to Millennials and the middle class, Wyndham Hotel Group (WHG) is embarking on a global transformation of its 16 hotel brands, each of which will be renovated, revitalized, and repositioned to meet the needs of contemporary travelers, it announced today.
The changes come after WHG completed an 18-month study of 50 recognized hotel brands, as well as the decision drivers of thousands of business and leisure travelers. The study's results indicated a need to update almost everything about WHG's brands in order to achieve what the company calls "the democratization of hospitality."
"We believe travel is about creating lasting memories, but given what's currently available in the market, travelers are forced to compromise enriching experiences because of price," said WHG Chief Marketing Officer Josh Lesnick. "It's time for the hospitality industry to get democratization right -- it's not just about value for money, it's about the freedom to explore your world the way you want. Wyndham Hotel Group's transformation enables that freedom."
WHG partnered with brand strategy and experience firm Siegel+Gale to understand guests' preferences and priorities, and to design brand experiences intended to "elevate" midscale and economy hotel stays with increased customization.
Rolling out starting this summer, changes to WHG's 16 brands -- Dolce Hotels and Resorts, Wyndham Grand, Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Wyndham Garden Hotels, TRYP by Wyndham, Wingate by Wyndham, Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham, Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham, Ramada, Ramada Encore, Baymont Inn & Suites, Days Inn, Super 8, Howard Johnson, Travelodge, and Knights Inn -- will encompass everything from hotel interiors to hotel websites, all of which will be executed against new brand promises. Super 8's new promise, for instance, is "An American Road Original," while Travelodge's is "Your Basecamp for Adventure." Microtel Inn & Suites' is "Brilliantly Efficient," while Ramada's is "Sample the World."
Additionally, WHG is investing in:
• Upgraded backend technology: WHG already has introduced to its portfolio a secure, cloud-based property management system with automated revenue management capabilities. More than 300 hotels are converting to this system every month, according to WHG, which said hotels that have adopted it have seen an increase in revenue per available room (RevPAR).
• Updated properties: Over the past two years, WHG has increased the number of substandard quality properties removed from its portfolio while adding more than 650 new-construction hotels to its pipeline, including hotels under its LEED-certifiable Days Inn and Super 8 prototypes, along with its Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham and Wingate by Wyndham brands.
• New loyalty benefits: WHG's loyalty program, Wyndham Rewards, has enrolled 5 million new members since rolling out the industry's only single-tier redemption model, and has added a new "elite" program that offers discounts on local experiences for no additional points at its top destinations. WHG also is increasing its partnerships to upgrade the guest experience -- adding, for example, new cold-brew coffee parlors at select Wyndham Grand properties and discounted admission to participating Six Flags theme parks.
Continued Lesnick, "Not all economy and midscale hotels are alike, just like no two travelers are alike. We've taken our 16 brands and redefined them to stand for something that matters to the kinds of guests we welcome so there's something for every kind of traveler, regardless of their budget. To Wyndham Hotel Group, hotel rooms aren't just boxes; they're the gateway to lasting memories."
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