Gutsy Genius Thinker

If Airbnb decides to pivot to being more week-minimum stays or focus on longer stays, well, that’s going to change the degree to which they compete with hotels in urban markets.

CINDY ESTIS GREEN – Cofounder and CEO Kalibri Labs and Author

Cindy Estis Green

Rockville, USA

Hey, you, it’s all about data and the story that it reveals. Solid, professionally interpreted data can help mere mortals make sense of the industry that they compete in. Cindy, through the multiple companies she has founded, has certainly contributed to the “truth” that eventually catches up to us all: thrive, adapt, innovate, or disappear. The genius is in framing the truth. She is also CEO and founder (a title that Anthony Melchiorri, GGT, also prefers, rather than the pedantic “entrepreneur”) of Driving Revenue, a data mining and automated marketing company that was acquired by Pegasus. She stayed on for a while before she founded two more companies, with the most recent being Kalibri Labs.

Cindy has advised hotel owners on how to work through the rise of channel distribution that accelerated over the last twelve years since the Great Recession of 2008 and the skyrocketing cost of customer acquisitions, and she continues to do so today. For her current company to be relevant, she needed a source of pure data. She faced the battle to convince hotel brands and hotel owners to share transaction and performance data—that is a gutsy hill to climb. It took over five years to convince them to trust her and then sell it back to them. Smart business model, right? It was so obvious during our interview that she is passionate about the granularity of the detail and wants to drag the industry at least close to modernity. Every other industry has cost-of-sales data (think retail and the tracking of inventory and store sales), but not the broader hospitality space.

Currently, Kalibri Labs is trying to help owners predict the future of C-19 on their businesses. No small feat, considering no one really knows. This form of dynamic interpretation, hunting for the new trends, is gutsy, considering the dark hole that we are staring into, for now. Historical data tells us that this shall pass; there’s comfort and opportunity there for sure!

Cindy’s Adapters Tips

  • Data sets you free if you know where it was sourced and who interpreted it
  • Everyone is competing to fill every room. So now everyone’s going to be competing for this middle-range kind of business…you know, local and regional, corporate travel, leisure, transient, then small groups, when groups can begin
  • Know your market, and find a way to bridge from here to the New Reality. Who knows? Your new customers may become your forever clients
  • For a while, the drive market will be meaningful. Actively market to connect to consumers within your drive radius
  • Hoteliers, in order to thrive going forward, have to understand completely the nature of their demand and the cost of acquisition. And they have to partner with the brands in order to more efficiently and effectively bring business in