Big Data & API: What are they, how do we use them and should we invest?

Big Data & API: What are they, how do we use them and should we invest?

 

 

In the Mind of the Expert
Stefano Montagna, Head of Business Partnerships at Travel Appeal

 

We’ve all heard the ubiquitous term ‘big data’ thrown around in recent years, but for many, it’s a difficult concept to grasp.

What kind of data does it refer to? Who owns this data? Which company should you get your big data from? How can big data help me?

The questions about data and its uses are endless. To answer the most common questions, we sat down with one of our local experts. No one like Stefano Montagna, Head of Business Partnerships at Travel Appeal, can better introduce us to the world of big data and APIs.

Stefano works directly with partnerships and integrations. To transform big data into something concrete and available to companies, the concept of APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) must also be considered, as they are the keys to unlock the so-called data lake.

 

A few weeks ago at the 2019 Phocuswright Conference, Amadeus launched their new data portal. This portal is entirely dedicated to companies looking to integrate their products and services with updated data on flights, visitors, hotels and much more via APIs.

 

Booking.com, Expedia, Airbnb and other big players are also now selling their APIs. As more agencies sell data, in addition to a product or service, what does this mean for the industry as a whole?

 

The development and release of APIs by large companies goes in two very specific directions.

The first is purely operational. For example, those who work directly in hotels, as a Sales or Marketing Manager, will have a more complete vision and simplified management of operations if the software they use combines a variety of functionalities. Today, properties use a handful of technology systems in their day-to-day operations, including PMS, CRS, RMS, CRM, etc. However, they often find themselves not taking full advantage of all the features, causing inefficiency and money wasted.

The second direction is more commercial. Now more than ever, there’s a need to profile every single target market as precisely as possible. Many large companies have understood this phenomenon and are making vast amounts of data available. However, the main concern is how many technologies can enhance this information and how many users are able to understand the value.

 

 

What kind of companies can benefit from APIs and why?

All companies can benefit from the data available via APIs.

PMS (Property Management Systems) provide dynamic information to complete static data from CRS (Central Reservation System) or CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software regarding guests and customers. This information supports the planning and implementation of precise and efficient web-marketing strategies.

With RMS data (Reputation Management Systems) available through APIs, new algorithms are being created to make pricing models more strategic and effective for the hospitality industry.

 

In addition to the hospitality industry, financial institutions, real estate, and telecommunication organizations also benefit from APIs and big data. Customer profiling is the basis for developing marketing strategies and business models.

Internally-collected data is often vague and poorly managed. For this reason, it becomes difficult to manually combine it with all sources. However, by integrating systems through an API, any business can seamlessly leverage the data they need, in real time. This "All in One" data integration is invaluable for managers and marketers when understanding each aspect of their business.

 

You take care of partnerships between Travel Appeal and selected businesses. Why and how can integrating data such as Travel Appeal's become a differentiation factor and competitive advantage for an organization?

Today, the competition between software providers is increasingly high and continues to grow. From experience, I refer mostly to the hospitality industry, but the trend is omnipresent across all sectors.

The market generally favors the most affordable and/or convenient solution. However, businesses must balance prices with the quality of their data to ensure they’re receiving accurate information that’s scalable across their entire range of current and potential customers.

That's why Travel Appeal is incredibly supportive in this innovation process. They have all the technical and commercial features that guarantee flexibility, scalability and success at a price point that fits the needs of each unique organization.