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VFM Leonardo Technology Adopted by Best Western International
to Enhance Visual Experience on Newly Redesigned BestWestern.com



Toronto ON, December 18th, 2012 – VFM Leonardo, leader in hotel multi-media syndication and display and a longstanding partner of Best Western International, recently extended its relationship with the company to power all of the hotel visual content on the recently redesigned bestwestern.com website. The redesign, which includes more features for travelers, comes from Best Western’s continued commitment “to best meet travelers evolving needs and truly exceed their expectations.1

Best Western International has long subscribed to VFM Leonardo’s VScape Digital Asset Management system to manage and distribute their properties photo images to VNetwork, the industry’s largest and most extensive travel distribution network. This new agreement expands the use of VScape to manage digital assets within the organization and on bestwestern.com in addition to the implementation of VFM Leonardo’s VPowered Multi-Media display technology.

Best Western International’s SVP of Sales and Marketing, Dorothy Dowling says, “Our commitment is to provide the most information possible to bestwestern.com visitors to ensure they’re booking their travel plans with confidence.2 In addition to adding features like TripAdvisor reviews and opinions, as well as enhanced hotel details and a shorter booking process, Best Western International has also added more visual content so guests can see more of the hotel before they book and provide travelers an even better online research and booking experience.3

"Travelers on average conduct more than 20 web searches when planning travel, according to research from Google,” says Dowling. Google also confirms that travelers are using video throughout this shopping journey. In fact, 57% watch video when deciding on accommodations at a particular destination.4

VFM Leonardo’s VPowered Multi Media Display technology is being used as the media gallery on the hotel details page for all hotels on bestwestern.com. This display technology supports images, 360° virtual tours and video in addition to media item text and full integration with VBrochure for Best Western properties who subscribe to it.



Additionally Best Western has implemented a number of modules that improve the efficiency and value of managing and displaying their digital media including:
  • Room Types Module allowing them to associate Best Western room type codes with individual media items and in turn displays those items through a VPowered gallery on the specific room type detail pages.

  • Single Sign On and Workflow Approval Engine allowing them to seamlessly integrate VScape into the Best Western intranet, used by associates to upload and maintain content for digital marketing, and centralize management and approval of digital assets prior to posting on bestwestern.com and forward distribution. This improves efficiency by decentralizing image management at the property level while centralizing approval so as to ensure brand integrity.
  • Text Translation API allowing them to seamlessly move textual content between VScape and the company’s approved translation provider.
“We are delighted to have our technology power all visual content on bestwestern.com as part of their recent site redesign. As longstanding partners, we’re happy to continue to help Best Western International achieve their objective to offer travelers the visual experiences they want and need in order to make informed booking decisions,” says Paolo Boni, CEO of VFM Leonardo 

ABOUT BEST WESTERN INTERNATIONAL, INC.

Best Western International, Inc., headquartered in Phoenix, Ariz., is a privately held hotel brand made up of more than 4,000* BEST WESTERN®, BEST WESTERN PLUS® and BEST WESTERN PREMIER® hotels in more than 100* countries and territories worldwide. Now celebrating 66 years of hospitality, Best Western welcomes hundreds of thousands of guests nightly. Best Western provides its hoteliers with global operational, sales, marketing and promotional support, and online and mobile booking capabilities. More than 15 million travelers are members of the brand’s award-winning loyalty program Best Western Rewards®, one of the few programs in which members earn points that never expire and can be redeemed at any Best Western hotel worldwide. The brand’s partnerships with AAA/CAA, racecar driver Michael Waltrip, and Harley-Davidson® provide travelers with exciting ways to interact with the brand. Best Western in 2011 was named AAA’s and CAA’s Hotel Partner of the Year and bestwestern.com was named the 2011 Compuware Best of the Web Gold award winner. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit bestwestern.com.
 
*Numbers are approximate and may fluctuate.
 
About VFM Leonardo
VFM Leonardo is a technology and online media company for the global hospitality industry. We provide e-marketers at hotel brands, management companies and hotel properties with technology, sales conversion tools and a global travel media network that enables them to better visually merchandise their hotels to millions of in-market travel shoppers monthly. Our core products, the VScape® Digital Asset Management System and VBrochure™ Online Merchandising System, leverage the VNetwork™ - the largest media syndication network in the industry. It includes all major search engines, Global Distribution Systems, online travel agencies, travel research and supplier websites, search portals, review, travel editorial, local directories and major social media and video sharing sites. Taking advantage of VBrochure’s mobile and social media platforms, hotels can ensure that their rich visual presentations reach consumers on their mobile devices and through their social graphs. For more information about VFM Leonardo, visit www.vfmleonardo.com.

Connect with VFM Leonardo. 
@VFMLeonardo
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______________________

[1] Hotelmarketing.com, BestWestern.com relaunches with TripAdvisor reviews (http://hotelmarketing.com/index.php/content/article/bestwestern.com_relaunches_with_tripadvisor_reviews)

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Think with Google, The 2012 Traveler (http://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/insights/library/studies/the-2012-traveler/)


VFM Leonardo Media Contact:
Julie Ford
Toll free: 1-877-593-6634
Phone: 416-263-5446
Email: press@vfmleonardo.com


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