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So often hotel GDS (Global Distribution System) ads go mismanaged or underutilized. Before running any campaign, be sure you have strong objectives and goals and that is communicated to marketing, revenue management, sales and your vendor.

Define targeting parameters and manage your PCCs. If you do not define them, it will be based on targeting around your airport code.

Start with using channel share from Agency 360 to determine the highest volume producing GDS accounts in your market. Then drill down to highest for hotel then accounts an get more granular until you have a defined plan of attack. If your overall goal is awareness instead of specific account targeting, you may need to dissect your data differently.

Strategies to Maximize Hotel GDS Ads Performance:

  1. You can target specific agents or specific accounts. Note, the account must be ad-enabled to see the ad. Cross reference Agency 360 to look for account trends to target. Involve your BT Sales Manager, if you have one.
  2. Suppress top accounts that already have high production of repeat business or consortia accounts. Disregard if the goal is awareness for a new build, conversion or renovation.
  3. Focus on need dates or focus on arrival by specific day of week. You can even block Tuesday arrival.
  4. Review ad copy and creatives quarterly (or monthly). There is an option for dynamic rate updates that pull the lowest rate of the day.
  5. Work with your campaign manager to determine your strategy. Quarterly strategy meetings are advised.

You are paying for impressions. Unlike the rest of the digital world, there are no cookies and you cannot click on GDS Ads. There is no option to pay for clicks because clicks do not exist.

Attribution

The attribution model assumes that if an account has a transaction that saw an ad in the last 30 days, 100% of that transaction is credited to that impression. You can also change the attribution model. Currently, the model has a 30 day follow, but you can request a lower time frame.

Reporting

It is almost impossible to determine incrementality on hotel GDS ads. As previously mentioned, you are paying for impressions on ads you cannot click. With that said, you do not even know how many impressions are shown. HUH? Let that sink in…

The best way is to cross reference your Agency 360 and compare if you are getting additional penetration against your comp set over time. You can also request how to pull your new and increasing PCCs which also becomes a good prospecting list for sales.

In closing, you need to manage where your ads show up, so you don’t pay for business you would have received anyway. Closely monitor your strategy and work closely with your campaign manager.

**Thank you to Misty Wise of Atrium Hospitality for contribution to this article.**