Strategic Marketing Management 

Executive Summary of Accor

The report aims to analyse the case study of Accor in which it purposes to analyse the current digital scenario for generating customer traffic. The report throws light on various aspects that include situation analysis of the industry, defining the problem, studying the key issues or goals of the organization, alternatives courses of action, and selecting the best option. The conclusion states that it is more beneficial for the organization in consideration to generate an online customer stream along with the combination of Online Travel Agencies and its own digital platforms.

Contents

Introduction.

Main analysis.

Key Issues/Goals.

Development of alternative solutions.

Recommended course of action and justification.

Action and implementation plan.

Conclusion.

References.

Appendices.

Introduction to Accor

The given case study puts forward the discussion on the use of digital platforms for strengthening the brand named Accor. The organization is a leading hotel brand in the industry with a wide portfolio and presence in 92 countries. The organization is looking for digital marketing strategies that can help it to penetrate its presence in the existing markets. There are many options available for the organization to achieve this objective. These options include working through the own website of the company to generate online traffic, taking the help of Online Travel Agencies (OTA) and working in collaboration with Room key. Situation analysis suggests that there is no surety that Room key will perform better than the existing OTA. Further, Room key is a growing company but its sustainability and ideas might not work for long term. However, at the same time, its benefits are high for Accor in terms of customer traffic and market penetration. OTAs that are performing well in the market include TripAdvisor, Expedia, Booking.com, Trivago and Hotels.com (Demirçiftçi and Kızılırmak 2016). Thus, the report will analyse the situation in detail and alternative courses of action will be developed. Also, there will be analysis of all the alternatives, recommended courses of action and justification for selecting the best solution.

Main Analysis of Accor 

The analysis of the case study suggests that it is a difficult choice for Accor to select the best alternative out of all the available options. When we look for the first option that the company has that is working with Room Key, it is like taking a risk when everything is going well with the company. Room Key is a new and emerging brand which is performing well and helping the existing partners to save their lost business by redirecting them to a different page but includes the same partner organizations. However, it should also be focused that customers leave a page because they do not find relevant information or find it difficult to get what they exactly want. Therefore, there can be another solution for the company rather than working with Room Key.

The next option which is available with the company is to take the help of Online Travel Agencies which includes include TripAdvisor, Expedia, Booking.com, Trivago, Hotels.com, and so on. These are the established companies and they have captured the market significantly. Therefore, if Accor invests money in these companies for its bookings, there will be no loss in terms of doubts on the sustainability of these companies or replacement in the short run by any other company. Further, if we look at the data, it can be analysed that the brand health of the top five online travel agencies is good, customers prefer to use them and are also trusted by the customers. The number of hotels available on expedia and booking.com are also much more and monthly visitors' numbers are also large (Lee and Baker 2017). Thus, even though the top OTA charges more, they are also trustworthy to generate traffic for Accor.

The third option available with the company is to work on its own digital channels and increase the number of online bookings. Accor is performing well on its own digital channels in terms of attracting customers and online bookings. The company already possesses its master corporate portal by the name of AccorHotels.com. Moreover, there are individual websites for its different brands and also mobile application. Also, there is a loyalty programme that attracts customers so that they book directly through the company website in order to avail more benefits and offers. As of now, 24 per cent participants of the loyalty programme made bookings directly with the company which shows that this area of opportunity can be explored more for additional profit generation (Minazzi and Panno 2019). Company also invests on search engine optimization, keywords, mobile application, paid search ads, email marketing and social media marketing. 35 per cent of the total bookings is made through company’s website online. When discussing about Key Room, 90 per cent of its profits come from the main websites of the partner companies (Room Key. n.a). Thus, if the organization improves its own websites, the traffic can be saved from moving to other brands. The scenario suggests that company is performing good with its own digital sources and thus, they must be improved further to fight against the competition.

Key Issues/Goals of Accor 

The key issue or goal is to choose the options that best fit the requirements of Accor by spending less and reducing the commission which needs to be given either to Room Key or other OTA (Park et al. 2018). Further, company also works on the possibility of its own digital sources’ improvement. All the available options have their own pros and cons. Intense competition and changing trends make it difficult to collaborate with the best one and come forward in the competition. Another major point is the charges that need to be paid to these agencies in return of the traffic that they generate. Thus, by considering all the pros and cons of each option and also their long-term performance, the company needs to have the best choice for its long-term profitability.

Development of Alternative Solutions for Accor 

In the hospitality industry where the term "Digital Hospitality" is getting more and more attention, Accor also needs to consider the best digital platforms for its customers (Hudson and Hudson 2017). Thus, there is no such choice to let go the digital presence. Company has to decide the way it needs to serve its customers through online platforms. The alternative solutions include engaging more with the customers through social media platform, maintaining post-sales services to keep the existing customers, more engagement in loyalty programmes and offering extra benefits when booked directly either by visiting the hotel or by the company website. However, these are only alternative solutions because the need of the hour is to take a big step towards this direction. Thus, the existing three options cannot be avoided along with considering these alternative solutions.

Recommended Course of Action and Justification

As per the analysis, it is suggested for the company to use the combination of its own digital platforms and Online Travel Agencies. This course of action can be justified by looking at the data. OTAs are performing good in the industry and are also preferred and trusted by the customers. Further, they are doing good as compared to Room Key opportunity. Moreover, in terms of cost consideration, the company is still not sure about the benefits and exact costing that both the options will put forward. Thus, it is worthy to go for the option which is well trusted and will add to the profitability of Accor. Henceforth, the company should work with OTA for generating online traffic. Along with this, it should also work on its own mobile application, websites, social networking sites and other digital tools. All these contribute 35 per cent to the total number of bookings. Company has already invested in all these tools and platforms and therefore, it will prove profitable for it. Furthermore, working on optimization, easy customer interaction, better services, less load time, feedback and quick services will help to move more and more customers towards company website and mobile application (Zsarnoczky 2018). In this way, long term goal of the company in the digital domain should be to become self-reliant for driving customer traffic.

Action and Implementation Plan

 

Action

Implementation plan

1.

To collaborate with top two OTA

To check every month the benefit received from this collaboration

2.

To work on its own digital resources

To check every month’s profitability

3.

To compare the benefits received by both the strategies

To focus on the one which provides maximum benefits

4.

To check competitor’s actions and market trends

To adopt the strategies as per the market conditions

Conclusion on Strategic Marketing Management

The analysis of the case study suggests that it is more beneficial for Accor to generate online customer stream with the combination of its own digital platforms and Online Travel Agencies. This option is feasible in terms of both costing, trustworthiness and long term sustainability. Moreover, the organization should also consider comparing the benefits of OTA and its own digital platforms in a timely manner so that the effectiveness can be compared. Along with this, Accor should also keep its eyes on the market trends so that any change requirement can be embraced on time. Accor should always strive for the strategy whose return on investment are more and can work efficiently in the competitive environment. For long term advantages, self-reliance is the key that should never be neglected.

References for Strategic Marketing Management

Demirçiftçi, T. and Kızılırmak, I. 2016. Strategic branding in hospitality: Case of Accor Hotels. Journal of Tourismology, 2, 1, 50-64.

Hudson, S. and Hudson, L., 2017. Marketing for tourism, hospitality & events: a global & digital approach. California: Sage.

Lee, M.I.N.W.O.O. and Baker, M.A. 2017. Technology, customer satisfaction and service excellence. 83-99. Boston, MA: CABI.

Minazzi, R. and Panno, A. 2019, July. Social media marketing in the hospitality industry: the evolution of European hotels ‘approaches from 2012 to 2018. In 9th advances in hospitality and tourism marketing and management conference proceedings. P. 345.

Park, S.Y. and Allen, J.P., 2018, July. The hotel industry vs. Online travel agencies: forever foe? In 2018 Global Marketing Conference at Tokyo. 837-842.

Room Key. n.a. Crunchbase. https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/room-key

Zsarnoczky, M., 2018. The digital future of the tourism & hospitality industry. Boston Hospitality Review, 6.

Remember, at the center of any academic work, lies clarity and evidence. Should you need further assistance, do look up to our Strategic Marketing Management Assignment Help

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