ساختار بازار و جایگزینی سمت تقاضای بخش های هتل شهری زنجیره ای
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Hospitality Management, Volume 30, Issue 1, March 2011, Pages 82–90
This study analyzes how the demand in hotel markets is divided amongst chained hotel segments. Hypotheses regarding consumers’ switching behavior due to changes in income levels and relative prices are tested using data from 25 major urban markets in the United States, encompassing segments ranging from luxury to economy over 43 quarters. The effects of differentiation and market concentration are also investigated in this context. The results suggest that leisure and individual consumers of the low-scale segments may be trading “up” to higher scales when their income increase, but that upscale segments’ corporate consumers are not necessarily trading “down” when Corporate Income fall. In addition, only low-scale segments appear to be substitutes to upscale segments, but the inverse seems not to be true. Also, properties in mid-range segments are found to be the only ones benefiting from a high market concentration, while low-scale properties turn out to be the ones gaining from differentiation through price.
Understanding the drivers of demand is important for any business, but especially for the ones in highly cyclical industries. Historically, the hotel sector has been extremely sensitive to economic cycles and is perceived as a fairly risky industry by lenders and equity investors alike. Asset disposals, vertical brand extensions and loyalty programs have been common strategies espoused by major hotel chains with the objective to reduce their exposure to changes in lodging demand. The expansion of brand families across price ranges has been viewed as complementary to loyalty reward programs as it is believed to facilitate the retention of loyal customers within the corporation when consumers decide to switch to other products or price ranges (Jiang et al., 2002). The switching behavior of lodging customers has also often been termed trading “up” or “down”, and is said to be driven essentially by income levels and willingness to spend (Yeoman and McMahon-Beattie, 2006). Income measures have repeatedly been found to be significant demand drivers in the hotel industry, as has price sensitivity. Canina and Carvell (2005) showed that demand for hotels from various segments were influenced differently by various income measures and that some were cross-price elastic, suggesting hotels in one segment could be substitute to hotels in other segments. The dissimilar, yet significant effects of income measures on hotel demand across segments have been attributed to structural factors of the market, such as its degree of differentiation or its concentration (Canina et al., 2005). Despite the many notable efforts to understand demand curves for the whole industry, individual segments or properties, the literature on hotel demand suffers from two significant limitations. First, previous research has mainly focused on absolute demand, or changes in absolute demand, and has established factors affecting growth or decline rates. In contrast, the present study investigates how demand shifts from one segment to another and concentrates on relative market shares while controlling for supply changes. Secondly, most prior efforts have concentrated on macro- or micro-factors, but rarely on the two together. The present study includes both and looks at the effect of income, market structure and relative prices jointly. It contributes to the research stream on hotel demand drivers by overcoming the aforementioned limitations and by answering the following questions: 1. Are hotel segments substitute to each other? 2. Is the demand switching from one segment to another due to income levels? 3. Is the demand cross-price elastic across segments? 4. Do the levels of differentiation and concentration of the market affect the degree of substitutability between segments? For the industry professionals, this research aims to assist them in better understanding why consumers trade “up” or “down”, or under which circumstances, and why certain markets may be more or less sensitive to such switching behavior.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Over the past decade, major hotel companies have created more brands than they ever did in the many decades of their history; for instance, in <3 years, Hyatt Corporation launched more brands than it had for close to 50 years of existence. Brand proliferation in the industry has been viewed as one of the most critical component of companies’ growth strategies (Olsen et al., 2007 and Olsen and Zhao, 2000) and one way to smooth and diversify companies’ incomes over business cycles. Another reason to such diversification has been the need to offer alternatives to consumers that are part of chains’ loyalty programs in order to retain them in the brand family when their needs or ability to pay changed. The results discussed in this article provide support to claims made about some of the benefits of brand diversification (or vertical brand extension). In particular, the results confirmed that low-scale properties may be suitable substitutes to higher-end hotels when the market is highly concentrated and when price becomes a critical factor in the purchase decision by corporations due to lower income levels. Hence, adding low-scale properties in a brand portfolio appears to make sense as it offers attractive alternatives to corporate consumers. However, the results also cast doubts on the possibility to retain more customers in the upscale segments by cutting prices when incomes fall. More research is certainly required to truly understand how consumers trade “up” or “down”. Nevertheless, revenue managers and pricing managers should be aware of the apparent lack of price sensitivity of the demand for upscale properties.