Right-sizing expectations

John Hendrie makes a great point in this editorial from hotel-online.com as he talks about how all the flowery verbiage in most hospitality promotions may not be doing anyone a favor: "We should have asterisks after all our promotional material, 'Caveat Emptor,' for we really do go overboard and invite Consumer dissatisfaction."

Just how overboard to they go? Some of the examples he cites are:

Mom’s home cooking (my mother struggled with baked potatoes). Overlooking the Harbor (not through adjacent buildings). Latest hi tech (alarm clocks do not count). Reminescent of a bygone era (the age of Charlemagne, perhaps). Fresh Maine Lobsters daily (not fresh frozen and last Thursday). Voted the best (thank you, Uncle Fred). Romantic sunsets (what about rain and mosquitoes). Exotic animals (a pig, rabbits and a snake do not make the grade). Modern amenities (a 19” Zenith and drapes that work are a start). Luxurious accommodations (a canopy and pillow chocolate are a stretch). High Quality (too many interpretations). Game Room (you need to move beyond Pong). Only locally grown ingredients used (live through a Boston winter). And, my personal favorite, Fine Dining (far too many expectations).

What I'd really like to see, in addition to clear writing that truly represents the place, albeit in its best light, is promotional material that shows real people, not gorgeous models, lounging around the pool and enjoying the restaurants. I feel like I'd need to invest in a red bathing suit--and why are they always red?--and some Jenny Craig meals just to be allowed into some resorts, based on their advertising!

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