Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Fitzgerald

Ryan Fitzgerald

Co-Founder, Net Conversion

Ryan Fitzgerald dreams in pie charts and bar graphs, and is committed to helping his clients understand the importance of these numbers. He leads analytics, reporting and product development for Net Conversion; spending hours poring over Excel spreadsheets and calculating the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. Mr. Fitzgerald's expertise includes product development, planning and analysis, pricing strategy, corporate finance, online media and advertising and the overall management of a variety of clients, partner and vendor relationships. While he is neurotic about numbers and infatuated with spreadsheets, he is remarkably articulate and fun to be around. Prior to launching Net Conversion, Mr. Fitzgerald invested his analytical efforts in the travel industry, including the world's biggest theme parks, Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Florida and a Master of Business in Finance from Rollins College. The team at Net Conversion is focused on driving revenue for clients in the travel industry through paid digital marketing along with comprehensive analytics. They won a 2012 Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) Gold Digital Marketing Adrian Award for an online video campaign created for the Nassau Paradise Island Promotional Board in partnership with Verb Interactive. The campaign increased website visitation by 30 percent from top-origin markets and delivered 50 percent more leads to partner resorts.

Mr. Fitzgerald can be contacted at 407-241-2044 or ryan@net-conversion.com

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.