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News How Hilton Head combines hotel and non-hotel data to get the best possible insights into their destination

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photo of the author Pascale Savard

Hilton Head Island Visitor & Convention Bureau turned to Inntopia’s DestiMetrics reporting in 2007 and has never looked back. Jack Reed is the DMO’s Director of Sales and has been with the organization for 16 years and says it this way:

“I can’t imagine living without it.”

A bit of history…
Hilton Head Island Visitor & Convention had been using the Smith Travel Research (STR) destination reports for some time when Robert Stenhammer was hired as the marketing director for Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island. Robert quickly recognized that the STR reports, while helpful in understanding hotel performance, were lacking in conveying the full inventory of Hilton Head, 2/3 of which is non-hotel properties such as condominiums and private homes. This represented an opportunity for the organization to start using some of the same reports he had been working with while employed in Breckenridge Colorado, where DestiMetrics already had a robust research program.

To bridge this intelligence gap, DestiMetrics began producing a standard RAO (Reservation Activity Outlook) report for Homes and Villas. Tom Foley, SVP of Business Process and Analytics for Inntopia, puts it this way:

“Like most mature destination travel hot-spots, Hilton Head is made up of a wide variety of inventory types, each of which caters to different demographics, serves a different purpose, and has often widely differing performance patterns. Hilton Head was the perfect test case for a holistic view of DestiMetrics and Smith Travel data combined.”

DestiMetrics then combined the Home and Villa RAO with the STR report data, resulting in a custom “2 Source Report”, which is an excellent overview of all paid guests coming to the island. The 2 Source Report shows past performance of all data collected (hotel and non-hotel), conveying year-over-year to-date measurements of the three primary indicators of lodging performance, ensuring the DMO has a clear picture of how they are doing. Jack Reed, Director of Sales at Hilton Head Island Visitor & Convention Bureau remembers the evolution well:

“We’ve grown together over the years — revamping, reorganizing. We have made some changes and kept things that made sense. Getting data from both reports has turned the corner for us by giving us more information of the whole picture, so we know how we’re doing from month-to-month and year-to-year.”

What’s next
Hilton Head Island Visitor & Convention Bureau is making the most of their reports by sharing information from the reports with town managers, so they get a solid benchmark. Both the DMO and individual properties also use the data to plan for future marketing campaigns and promotions. Here is how Jack Reed sums it up:

“We can now get real data out of the software. We keep an eye on the reports so we know how we’ve been and how we are doing comparatively. We’ve enjoyed our relationship with DestiMetrics and Inntopia, and over the years, we have found good value in what we do with them.”

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