• Dan Adams

Optimizing yield management with data automation

It’s amazing to think about how rapidly things have changed. Just a few decades ago, if you wanted to book a trip, you had to visit a travel agent, because they knew nearly everything about your travel options, including pricing, availability, and so forth. Fast-forward to today - anyone can book quick trips and month-long vacations online without a second thought.

You might have noticed that prices for these trips vary wildly, sometimes updating every minute. While these changing prices can be a little irritating, it is done to ensure that airlines and hotels optimize their profits while offering the best possible prices at any given time to customers. This ever-changing price structure is called yield management. And in 2022, yield management (or yield optimization) goes well beyond booking trips.

Yield management is more than just for the hotel industry, airlines, or others in hospitality. Yield management is also used to track website clicks, and other online activity, which can drive real revenue. Therefore, understanding how and why people engage isn’t simply a nice-to-have - it can become a major revenue generator for a wide variety of online businesses.

Getting your yield management right

Even though yield management formulas exist, optimizing yield management can be tricky, as we have seen with our clients. A good optimization strategy will depend on creating content for your audience that will keep them engaged, and determining which clicks generate the most revenue, timing, etc.

One customer, a large international media company, was looking to provide curated content for each customer to maximize engagement and ad revenue. More specifically, they wanted to understand advertising cost per hour, and the impact of new pricing and packaging strategies.

Before they started leveraging data, they were just guessing. Worse, they didn’t have verifiable results on their guesses. In fact, their entire revenue model was built on guesswork on top of guesswork. Meanwhile, they were spending hundreds of hours on data engineering resources to extract, transform, and load their data, otherwise known as ETL, so they could understand their customers and give them the best curated experience possible.

Enter data automation: the light at the end of the tunnel

After eight months of struggling with spreadsheets and an endless influx of data, they still didn’t have a solution in sight. Like so many companies, they ended up needing a large-scale data unification and governance strategy. Furthermore, they needed a platform that could be hosted in the cloud and wouldn’t require additional developer / data engineering investment. Ultimately, they needed data automation.

After deploying their data automation strategy, they could roll out real-time forecasting and make it available to all their yield, planning, and operations teams. This eliminated a huge bottleneck in their forecasting and planning processes. It allowed them to deliver automated reporting and forecasting that is 5x more granular and 3x more frequent - in 80% less time. All of this would have been impossible to achieve without data automation.

Whether you work in hospitality, travel, media, retail, or just about any industry, you need data automation to optimize your yield management strategy. If you are making big business decisions without data, you are just guessing. And if you are manually scraping together data, you are probably getting old, error-prone data at a very high cost. Data automation replaces guesswork with actionable insights to scale and grow your revenue.

No matter your company size or industry, if you want to go beyond data automation and ETL and get critical business insights in a few months – and learn more about this customer – email me today: dan@switchboard-software.com.