Case Studies

Selected Case Studies

1

Leading Regional Hospitality Group

The Situation:

The client is a leading provider of hotels, condominium resorts, villas and cottages, designed to multiple lifestyles and budgets.  They wanted to evaluate their website for effectiveness against the company’s expanded goals and create an improved user experience,  and overall, bring the brand into line with current online travel consumer trends.  They also wanted to shift more sales to the online channel.

The Solution:

We provided a detail picture of the current landscape, competitive challenges and insight into online travel best practices. Then we performed an assessment of their website and marketing strategy with a deep analysis of traffic, engagement and conversions.  That lead to development of a new roadmap for the team with all of the findings mapped to action items and, ultimately, improvement in the technology and business performance of the brand.

2

New Consumer Travel Brand

The Situation:

Two years ago a travel industry holding company was seeking to establish a startup leisure travel brand offering high end vacations and featuring high touch customer service and best practices technology. At that time there were only a few key founders with an investment and ideas for success.

The Solution:

Working with the investors from Day One, we developed the business plan, forecasts, organization structure and primary strategy. We recruited key positions while conducting primary consumer and competitive research. We also served as interim managers (CMO and GM), developed a detailed roadmap for launch and, working with our branding partners, developed full brand positioning and strategy. This new consumer effort will be launching in late 2015.

3

Major Travel Wholesaler

The Situation:

The client, one of the older, large wholesalers, was faced with losing market share to its competitors as the rest of the field was investing in new technology and marketing.

The Solution:

To regain prominence among travel agents, and secure a higher ranking among suppliers, Black & Wright helped develop a new, more effective marketing program for its agency customers, consortia and other affiliates. First, we studied the most effective “best practices” of our competitive set. Then we looked outside wholesalers, and studied OTA/affiliate partnerships. Next we worked with our hotel suppliers to determine the best ways to work with our b-to-b customers. Finally, we developed overhauled b-to-b marketing opportunities for our partners, and paired them with the most productive sellers in each category. Further, we engaged a top email marketing firm to develop custom agent email campaigns (a first in the industry), coupled with triggered messaging. Result: Within one year, our client was once again the leading wholesale partner to most Caribbean luxury properties, had the highest market share of Mexican luxury sales in it’s then- 54-year history (together with the highest ADRs), and enjoyed a rebound in Hawaii bookings among its East Coast and Midwest agency partners.

4

Innovative eCommerce Optimization Platform

The Situation:

This company was a spinoff from a highly successful, global insurance leader. In order to secure final funding, it needed to develop a highly detailed business roadmap, marketing plan and technology requirements for its new platform.

The Solution:

Black & Wright worked with the client’s highly talented team to develop the company roadmap, funding requirements, full marketing plan and comprehensive functionality requirements document.  After launch we took on a business development role, paving the way for the company, first by identifying potential customers based on our market intelligence process, then facilitating presentations with key decision makers.

With Black & Wright leading the way, our clients were able to accelerate the sales process and stay current with the competition.

5

Tourism Hospitality Technology Company

The Situation:

This client is the global provider of customized online travel and entertainment solutions. We met them when they were a start-up, offering online reservations for restaurants and local attractions. They needed to fast-track their knowledge of the travel industry as well as meet potential distribution, so we helped identify and develop a series of transactions that would rapidly increase revenue and position the company for an opportunity to develop additional business relationships, enhance distribution, marketing, fund raising and possible licensing opportunities.

The Solution:

As this startup grew, Black & Wright was there to support them through some of the rough spots as well as continue to support their B2B marketing efforts. This included developing better agreements between distributors and suppliers and negotiations with major OTAs. Then, in 2006, the company won a non-air product distribution agreement with a major Airline and needed to quickly develop new platform architecture that would enable hotel inventory distribution AND meet as yet unknown future requirements developed the architecture and oversaw initial development with a team of off-shore developers. Since then, this client has grown to provide customized and flexible booking platform for major travel companies worldwide.

6

Leading Travel Guide Publisher

The Situation:

Long beloved travel guide series had successfully revitalized its brand, gained print market share and built the foundation for a strong online business. Yet during that time competition had been making major investments to transition from print to online travel. Add to that the changes in consumers’ online travel behavior, coupled with media buyers demand for greater targeting and “down the funnel” content, and it was evident that the brand needed to revitalize its site; not only be in line with the competition, but anticipate online travel trends in the near future.

The Solution:

First we reviewed the site for potential new revenue opportunities; from this, we developed a new revenue growth model and financial plan. To confirm the potential, we conducted an advertising marketplace survey of leading interactive ad agencies – with a practice focus on travel advertisers – to determine which vehicles digital media buyers were looking for, performance standards, online ad vehicles and rates they were willing to pay. We used this data, and engaged Crispin Porter + Bogusky (formerly TextureMedia) to develop new page designs that met the travel media standards, based on our primary research. Finally, we worked with their sales team to refine the story and develop new sales techniques. The results: a 600% Y-O-Y sales/revenue growth by Q3 2009.

7

South African Low Cost Carrier

The Situation:

This popular South African airline was coming into its own as a low cost carrier with a growing online following and sticky brand. Yet it faced a number of growth related challenges, including transforming a traditional business model to an ecommerce model; upgrading its technology to meet new demands and integration of non-air products.

The Solution:

Working in conjunction with our partners at T2Impact, we provided website analysis, a site usability roadmap, developed a new financial model for higher revenues and ROI analysis, and created high level web architecture and re-design. Non-air supplier relations are also critical, so we introduced a supplier direct model and even met with some of the supplier-partners to support negotiations for new longer term agreements.