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With podcasts like “Serial” and “S-Town” becoming major cultural touch points, it was only a matter of time before hotel companies started to look into the medium. Today, IHG and Marriott have both started producing hotel-related podcasts as a means of content marketing. To learn more, click here.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index released a new travel report with good news for the lodging industry – customers are generally happier with hotels than they were a year ago. Guest satisfaction is up 2.7 percent from 2016, with an industry-wide rating of 76 on a zero to 100 scale. The report also named the companies and brands with the highest customer satisfaction ratings, as well as those at the bottom. The highest-scoring brands received ratings between 83 and 85. To read more about the report and to view the rankings, click here.

Hospitality doesn’t necessarily consider itself to be one of the most technology-forward industries out there. However, over the last five years, hotels have been rapidly expanding their technology toolkits to better accommodate guests and grab more market share. According to Hospitality Technology’s 2017 Lodging Technology Study, hotels are spending as much as 6 percent of total revenue on tech and 57 percent of hotels are planning to spend more on technology in 2017 than they did in 2016. Read more about how hotels are incorporating cutting-edge technology into their operations here.

How customers use travels apps has changed in recent years, and one area that affects their behavior is performance. Customers who now expect faster image load, downloads, and search results are more likely to close out or give up on an app when its speed fails to meet their demands. Learn more about this issue here.

According to Marcus & Millichap’s 2017 U.S. Hospitality Investment Forecast, the state of Oklahoma ranks fourth in the U.S. in the percentage of its hotel inventory currently under construction. There were 3,906 rooms under construction as of December 2016, representing 5.6 percent of the state’s hotel stock. Read more here.

According to STR, upscale limited-service hotels are currently in the midst of a development boom. These limited-service upscale properties are especially popular in crowded downtown areas where hotels don’t necessarily need to have an in-house restaurant or conference center. In the first 90 days of 2016 alone, the number of rooms in the upscale segment jumped by 6.1 percent. Room growth in the industry as a whole was only 2.9 percent. Customer demand for limited-service upscale properties is also at an all-time high. Learn more about this trend here.

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