Last updated: 09:10 AM ET, Wed August 10 2016

Hotels Lead Travel Pack In Results Of Harris Poll Of Brand Equity

Hotel & Resort | Gabe Zaldivar | August 10, 2016

Hotels Lead Travel Pack In Results Of Harris Poll Of Brand Equity

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As it turns out, you travelers have a rather favorable outlook on the hotel industry.

Such was the most immediate takeaway from the The Harris Poll 2016 EquiTrend Study, which The Financial highlights from the standpoint of the travel industry.

As noted, Harris Poll takes into account “familiarity, quality, and consideration” to measure brand’s overall equity with consumers.

The study, which you can view in the above link, offers great news for the likes of Hilton, W Hotels and Hampton Inn & Suites, which represent the top of the heap in Full Service, Luxury and Mid-Market offerings respectively.

Harris Poll, owned by Nielsen, highlights some key items in respects to the industry. Most notably is that hotels lend those nice warm and tingly feels for consumers who are considering booking travel, surpassing the marks of other crucial cogs throughout travel commerce.

Joan Sinopoli explains a bit on the survey and what brands can glean from the results, via The Financial: “Destinations are fundamentally aspirational and consumers desire a reasonably full line of amenities, contributing to full service and luxury hotel brands’ equity leadership. Travel brands with strong equity also tend to be brands that offer broad scope loyalty programs, such as Marriott and Hilton. Overall, consumers feel a stronger connection, or an emotional bond with hotels, compared to the airlines they fly or the cruise lines they sail.”

And if you think about it, the results make sense. In general, you get what you expect from a hotel stay. Amenities offered are fairly transparent compared to other industry stalwarts whose accommodations may be more obscure at the time of booking.

Chances are, when you book a hotel you know exactly what you are getting, usually from years of consistent loyalty among your respective brand of choice.

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The good news, however, is that travel on a whole is staying the course regarding equity. Say what you will about airline delays, hotel hiccups and cruise mishaps, but the study states that these entities continue to garner a favorable outlook from the very consumers that frequent their various brands.

In fact, The Financial states travel’s equity is up on a whole 2.3 percent since 2014.

It’s an important sentiment that proves expectations are being met more regularly than they are being squandered.

Sinopoli continues with particular praise from those well-known brands that should receive plaudits at this point: “Free benefits, such as breakfast and evening social hours, an upscale atmosphere and a top loyalty program all help raise consumers’ perceptions of the Hilton brand. The W Hotel and Resorts, known for a contemporary and modern feel, appeals to younger, luxury-seeking consumers and helps the brand reclaim its top spot for the first time since 2012.”

So, perhaps, companies should concentrate on uniform amenities, style and loyalty program rewards across its entire brand.

Consumers can more readily match their expectations and come away from the experience far more fulfilled than they might be when something unexpected surfaces.


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