Page 1 of 4 ©2012 Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)
Certified Hospitality Digital Marketer (CHDM)
The digital marketing certification program designed specifically for the hospitality industry identifies
candidates who are able to leverage their knowledge of the internet marketing channel to maximize
direct online channel revenues through lead generation, increase in customer engagement and loyalty,
online brand awareness and positive product exposure. At the conclusion of this certification, the
candidate will exhibit expertise in most tactical areas of digital marketing, be proficient in creating
basic strategic initiatives, utilize the analytical and management tools necessary to communicate
results and execute an effective hospitality digital marketing plan.
Section One: Digital Marketing Impact
At the conclusion of this section, the candidate will understand and be able to communicate the
relevance of the digital marketing platform relative to the overall marketing strategy. The candidate
will be able to Identify appropriate levels of hotel involvement based on property size, market, product
and affiliations, establish strategic priorities for executing digital marketing initiatives, determine a
budget based on specific property needs and setting a realistic and appropriate ROI expectation.
Section Two: Strategy and Tactics
Each of the following categories will enable candidates to understand the relevance of the individual
topics to their overall digital marketing strategy. The candidate will be able to make recommendations
for resource allocation based on greatest expected return , suggest a strategic direction and also
display an expertise in the tactical areas and execution of each topic.
Identify need and execute key best practices in the creation or maintenance of a hotel or resort
website: content, user friendliness, search engine optimization, customer engagement and ease
of booking. Candidate will be capable of selection a development vendor, project manage the
web development process, and ensure website functionality and social media integration.
Candidate will also identify analytics to track revenue, visitor sources and drivers, SEO
movement and other key performance indicators.
Page 2 of 4 ©2012 Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)
This overused and often misunderstood practice will be defined in this session and enable the
candidate to direct the optimization strategy, including keyword research, search engine
friendly design, link building and local strategies. The candidate will be introduced to analytics
software reporting in order to be able to maximize the SEO process as it applies to website,
social, local and mobile.
The completion of this session the candidate will be able to determine when the use of pay per
click advertising is appropriate. The will garner a basic knowledge of networks, mobile ads,
banner ads, video and TV ads as well as when to use content. The candidate will also be able to
estimate budgeting based on keyword research, set up and execute campaigns in Google Ad
words or similar platforms and evaluate the analytics of the results to determine future actions.
The completion of this session will enable the
candidate to demonstrate an extensive
knowledge of mobile as a distribution channel and as a distribution channel and how it
contributes to the overall digital marketing operation. The candidate will be able to determine
content and functionality for a mobile web site, direct mobile marketing efforts including PPC,
QR codes and social media integration with mobile websites.
At the conclusion of the email session the candidate will possess the ability to drive a CRM
strategy based on their knowledge of best practices development of an email marketing list,
utilizing current email marketing technology, develop campaigns and execute, define key
performance targets indicators to differentiate successful campaigns from misses.
At the conclusion of the social media session, the candidate will be able to define top
hospitality social media categories, recognize the opportunities and identify related risks within
each, replicate industry best practices for category use and utilize primary measurement and
management tools to ensure quantifiable results.
The completion of the tactical section will enable the candidate to utilize the best practices and
exhibit tactical expertise in the following categories in order to implement a well rounded
digital marketing strategy.
Local and Proximity
Page 3 of 4 ©2012 Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)
This session will prepare the candidate to be able to identify available channels for both local
based and proximity based platforms including Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and data warehouses,
analyze the best use of each, identify the specific tactics of executing a strategy and analyzing
the results of execution.
Upon completion of this session, the candidate will be able to define and identify retail,
merchant and agency models as well as the multiple channels and their role in the overall
distribution strategy for the hotel or hospitality organization. The candidate will also
understand distribution, costs, content, marketing reach, connectivity and analytics in order to
be able to communicate risks and benefits to the revenue management department.
After completing this session, the candidate will be capable of evaluating the organization’s
need for a blog presence through research, identify blog’s SEO value, strategically design blog
site content and ongoing strategy, determine appropriate blog site platforms and communicate
the results of the blog as it relates to traffic, conversions and other key performance indicators.
Audio Visual & Rich Media
Completing this session will enable the candidate to define, recognize the available channels,
discover the best practices in distribution and understand distribution aggregators in the area
of audio, visual and rich media. Also, the candidate will be able to identify and select vendors
to provide these services as well as analyze the effectiveness of each medium via testing and
The candidate will recognize the opportunities and risks that review contribute to the
hospitality industry. The candidate will be knowledgeable in best practices for increasing
ratings and positive review contributions, managing negative reviews, and using aggregators to
cover a broader range of results.
Section Three – Analytical, Productivity and Management tools
Upon completion of this section, the candidate will have a thorough understanding of the analytical
tools available for each channel and platform, as well as the best practices regarding testing, and
results reporting. The candidate will not only understand how to collect various tool and platform
analytics, but how to interpret the findings to stakeholders outside of the digital marketing role.
Page 4 of 4 ©2012 Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI)
Achieving an ROI is only possible if the candidate is able to utilize the various analytic tools
available for each channel. This session will enable the candidate to mine content on the web
in order to analyze browsing behavior, execute an advertising strategy for both search and
display, report quantitative results, take action on web and email analytics to improve
This session will prepare the candidate for communicating the results of the analytics from
different channels – social, web, email, advertising and mobile – in order to provide necessary,
valid information to hospitality leaders outside of the digital marketing area.
We want your feedback!
Keep in touch with the development of this certification, by joining the HSMAI Hospitality Digital
Marketer Facebook group! Or contact any of the members of the Certification work group:
• Heny Gabay, VP of Marketing, Wyndham Hotel Group – 212.265.8851
• Loren Gray, Director of E‐commerce, Ocean Properties Ltd. – 561.274.2323
• Joe Hyman, President & CEO, VIZERGY – 904.389.1130 x 111
• Max Starkov, President & CEO, HeBS Digital (Hospitality eBusiness Strategies) –
Paolo Torchio, VP, E‐marketing And Revenue Consulting, Sabre Hospitality Solutions –
Holly Zoba, Senior Vice President of Hospitality Sales, Signature Worldwide –