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Despite stalled growth in China, Brazil and Russia, a wave of newly middle-class travelers from the BRICs and beyond will start visiting international destinations in the coming decades — dwarfing the numbers we’ve seen thus far.
It’s old news that the hotel establishment has embraced TripAdvisor. Haters can keep on hating. But the TripAdvisor-Cornell partnership makes even more marginal those who would dismiss the power of user reviews and TripAdvisor itself.
Once a pariah in some corners of the hotel industry, TripAdvisor is now a well-respected part of the establishment.
More than 100 people signed up on the first day of registration for a free online education course on reputation management developed by a Cornell University’s online education subsidiary in partnership with user-review giant TripAdvisor.
Representatives from companies such as Hilton, InterContinental Hotels Group, Waldorf Astoria, Doubletree, Leading Hotels of the World, Marriott, and Danat Hotels are among the registrants, officials said.
Registration opened May 28 for the the eCornell course, “Managing Your Online Reputation with TripAdvisor.” The online course is geared for hospitality professionals, and includes insights from faculty at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration on how to use reputation management best practices to increase hotel bookings and revenue.
For TripAdvisor, which already has a relationship with the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research, the course is a way to spread the word about TripAdvisor and its various hotel products, including Business Listings and TripConnect, to a wider array of hospitality professionals.
“We developed the course with eCornell because we saw a great opportunity to marry leading academic reputation management research with insights from TripAdvisor’s community of 260 million travelers* and our partnerships with a wide range of hospitality businesses,” a TripAdvisor spokesperson says.
And, eCornell would benefit from the distribution reach of TripAdvisor, which is taking varied steps to promote the course and partnership.
Chad Oliveiri, vice president of content and partnerships for eCornell, says the course will provide some of the basics of online reputation management, and will help participants create an action plan for driving revenue regardless of the size of the accommodation.
Faculty will present best practices about reputation management “in the context of TripAdvisor,” Oliveiri said, although their approach will be “agnostic” about various review sites.
The TripAdvisor spokesperson agrees that the course teaches best practices about reputation management “that are broadly applicable across sites, ranging from TripAdvisor to social media sites like Facebook.”
In addition to insights from Cornell University School of Hotel Administration professors, TripAdvisor experts share use cases from TripAdvisor, the TripAdvisor spokesperson says.
The course reviews a variety of online reputation management tools available to the hospitality industry, although Oliveiri points out that the course doesn’t necessarily endorse using such tools since some hoteliers can’t afford them.
Years ago hotels didn’t know whether they could trust TripAdvisor reviews, Oliveiri said, adding that TripAdvisor has worked very hard to overcome any misgivings.
“Continuing to partner with institutions like Cornell certainly will help with that,” Oliveiri said.