Mid-priced Hotel Brands Give Luxury Brands a Run for the Money In First Quarter Market Metrix Hospitality Index Results

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The most in-depth and reliable source of hospitality performance data reveals that satisfaction and loyalty is growing for many mid-market brands, rivaling upscale chains.

Brands in mid-priced hotel segments are challenging upscale and luxury chains in the latest guest satisfaction results reported in the Market Metrix Hospitality Index (MMHI). Guest satisfaction and loyalty is growing for many mid-market brands (e.g., Drury and Hampton Inn in the US, Tulip Inn and Ramada in Europe, and BreakFree Resorts and Aston International in Asia). These value-priced competitors are delighting guests with a cadre of friendly, respectful staff and by offering free or low cost Internet access, clean facilities, and carefully chosen services and locations.

According to Dr. Jonathan Barsky, chief research officer at Market Metrix, “The recession pushed some guests into trying mid-priced brands, and many weren’t disappointed. This is because mid-tier brands are upgrading their services and amenities, such as offering free Internet and fancier toiletry lines, which can drive satisfaction, justify higher rates and blur the line between mid-scale and upscale. When guest expectations are lower, guests are more likely to be surprised and delighted with special amenity packages and other services typically associated with higher priced brands.”

MMHI data is collected from more than 40,000 travelers around the globe each quarter. Guests provide more than 200 details about their most recent hotel and casino experiences. The MMHI customer satisfaction score is based on the average rating of 14 product and service questions that are highly correlated with guest loyalty and recommendations.

The Americas
The top scoring hotel brand in the Americas for the first quarter of 2013 was Drury Hotels (-0.2 to 90.9). Other top scoring brands included Ritz Carlton (-0.5 to 89.9) and Four Seasons (+1.3 to 89.7).

Europe, Middle East & Africa
Tulip Inn earned the highest satisfaction score (+1.4 to 88.6) among all hotel brands in Europe, Middle East and Africa. Mid-priced Tulip Inn, located in city centers and business districts, has developed a strong following in Europe (their Net Promoter score of 32 was highest among all European Upper Midscale brands) with guests embracing its sleek ambiance, pampering service and respectful staff.

Asia Pacific
InterContinental, Asia Pacific’s top-scoring brand, operates 50+ hotels in Asia Pacific. The company recently announced that they will offer free Internet for all loyalty members worldwide. This appears a wise decision given that guests rank InterContinental’s Internet service only fourth compared to other luxury brands in Asia Pacific according to this quarter’s MMHI results. Other research has found that free Internet is more important than room service to travelers and that nearly half of adults (43%) would choose not to stay in a hotel that charged for Internet.

For more results from the Market Metrix Hospitality Index, visit http://www.marketmetrix.com.

About Market Metrix
Market Metrix is the leading provider of customer and employee feedback solutions for hospitality companies around the globe. By connecting feedback with revenue, Market Metrix helps hospitality businesses make smart investment decisions that both improve the guest experience and produce higher profits. Real-time feedback and action management drive timely service recovery, turning potential negative reviews into online raves. And no other feedback program offers the detailed global benchmarking of MMHI, allowing clients to spot gaps and opportunities in the context of key competitors. Market Metrix is essential to more than 14,000 businesses in over 70 countries, and has been helping forward-thinking executives profit from feedback since 1996. For more information, visit http://www.marketmetrix.com.

Mike Waite
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