Carol Verret Consulting 
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Training Seminars
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The Jigsaw Puzzle – 
The Fit of the Revenue Management
and Internet Group Sales Pieces 
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April 2, 2007 - A recent study by HSMAI and PhocusWright suggests that the meetings market will be very strong in 2007.  However, they also indicate that “Groups and meeting inventory and rates must be centralized and well integrated into other core systems, including hotel property management, revenue (yield) management, central reservations, customer relationship management, e-commerce and dynamic packaging.” 

The study goes on to say that meeting planners are using more internet platforms to locate the venues and pricing.  In another study by the same company, it was indicated, “…this year for the first time online transactions will account for over half of all U.S. travel bookings.” 

Typically, the management of online distribution sites was the territory of the Revenue Manager and group bookings was the domain of the sales department.  It would appear that the two have converged – it is even more important than ever for the two pieces of the puzzle to have a seamless interface.

The sales department has typically focused their efforts with clients and potential clients on personal relationship building.  This is the first time that there is statistical documentation of customer behavior to indicate the relationship with the hotel is likely to begin without any contact from the sales department. 

Group rates were a negotiated piece between the sales manager and the planner – not necessarily kept secret but hardly transparent either.  The new study would seem to suggest that group rates would have to become more transparent to the consumer if they are to be loaded into e-commerce platforms, central reservations and Internet meeting sites. 

This requires the seamless integration of sales and revenue management strategies and tactics.  That sounds good but how do you actually execute this at the property level? 

  • Identifying the E-commerce Group Sites.  The first step in the group sales e-commerce strategy is to get over the shock of not having to take every prospect to lunch.  Imagine how much expense money you will save!  The second is to locate group e-commerce sites and evaluate the logistics of becoming a presence on them. 
  • Group E-commerce Sites by Market Segment.   Not all of them may fit the revenue management strategy in terms of the demographics of the customers and price sensitivity.    The landmark e-commerce sites like Expedia and Travelocity’s Groople may be a good beginning for certain kinds of groups such as social.  RFP sites such as StarCite are used by a different demographic of meeting planner. 
  • Integrating Internet Group Channels into the RM Strategy.   The potential revenue contribution of each group distribution channel must be evaluated.   This is difficult when some of the group channels are relatively new and new to the property’s group sales effort.  The rate and offerings by revenue period will need to be monitored closely – by sales or the Revenue Manager.   This process will probably be more art than science initially!
  • Weekly Sales and RM Meetings. A key agenda item of the weekly Revenue Management meeting is to evaluate the contribution from all channels.  As groups that use the internet distribution sites are booking into the future, it is critical to build a feature into the channel reports that allows the Revenue Management committee to see and evaluate the channel from which the group booking originated when it is consumed.   This is necessary to evaluate the positioning on various channels and how to tweak it to reflect the revenue management strategy for that period of time. 
The implication of this potential paradigm shift for both the sales and revenue management departments is huge!  It changes how we market to groups from a strictly personal contact model to creating a group sales identity online that is compelling.   It involves revenue management more intimately with the group sales function.  Did anyone feel the earth move yet!?

Carol Verret And Associates Consulting and Training offers training services and consulting in the areas of sales, revenue management and customer service primarily but not exclusively to the hospitality industry. To find out more about the company click on www.carolverret.com. To contact Carol send her an email at carol@carolverret.com or she can be reached by cell phone (303) 618-4065.  Watch for second I Hate Cold Calls Web Cast April 20!



Carol Verret And Associates Consulting and Training offers training services and consulting in the areas of sales, revenue management and customer service primarily but not exclusively to the hospitality industry. To find out more about the company click on www.carolverret.com. To contact Carol send her an email at carol@carolverret.com or she can be reached by cell phone (303) 618-4065.

copyright © Carol Verret, 2002-2003 -2004 -2005 - 2006 - 2007


 
Contact:
Carol Verret, Consulting and Training
Carol Verret
5910 S. University #C-18, PMB 374
Greenwood Village, CO 80121
Telephone: (303) 618-4065
carol@carolverret.com
Web Site: http://www.carolverret.com/
Email: carol@carolverret.com
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Also See: Client DNA - The Gold Standard for New Business Development / Carol Verret / March 2007
The 'I Hate Cold Calls' Web Cast - The New Paradigm of Sales! / Carol Verret / February 2007
Hate Cold Calls? - Discover the New Paradigm of Hotel Sales / Carol Verret / January 2007
Issues in Hotel Sales Training - Metics for Success / Carol Verret / December 2006
Is the Party Over?; The Challenge of Decreasing Hotel Room Demand / Carol Verret / October 2006
The Habits of Highly Successful Hotel Sales People Ramp Up for 2006! / Carol Verret / September 2006
Identifying the WIIFM Factor – The Essential of Hotel Sales Success / Carol Verret / August 2006
Revenue Management for Hotel GMs – What You Don’t Know Can Jump Up and Bite You! / Carol Verret / July 2006
Feeding the Revenue Elephant; Hotel Revenue Management / Summer 2006 
The "Tipping Point" - Identifying the Touch Points in Hotel Sales / Carol Verret / May 2006
The "Tipping Point" - Touch Points Make a Difference in Customer Service Training / Carol Verret / April 2006
Selling Up! Taking Group Room Revenue to a New Level / Carol Verret / February 2006
Revenue Management 2006; The Risks and Rewards / Carol Verret /January 2006 
Revenue Management and Group Sales - The Partnership Not the Disconnect / Carol Verret / November 2005
Habits of Highly Successful Hotel Sales People / Carol Verret / September 2005
Triple Witching Hour - The Marketing Plan, Revenue Management Strategy and RFPs for '06 / Carol Verret / August 2005
"Smile" is a Learned Behavior - Creating a Culture of Customer Service / Carol Verret / July 2005
Revenue Management Systems -- Considerations for Evaluation / Carol Verret / June 2005
Disconnect -- Aligning the Revenue Management and Sales Strategies / Carol Verret / May 2005
Independent Hotels & Resorts; Ride the Wave or Float with the Tide? / Carol Verret / March 2005
Hospitality Sales Training Companies Reach Across the Competitive Playing Field to Combine Live Seminar Expertise with  the Convenience of the Internet / Carol Verret / January 2005
Revenue Management - The Challenge for Hotel Sales / Carol Verret / January 2005
Hotel Sales Departments -- Issues in Processes and Functionality / Carol Verret / November 2004
The GM'S Role in Revenue Management / Carol Verret / October 2004
Transforming the Hotel Sales Organization; Alignment with the New Realities of Sales / Carol Verret / August 2004
The Revenue Management Strategy - The Pre-Plan Marketing Plan / Carol Verret / July 2004
Hotel Revenue Management this Summer - a Game of Skill, Art and Most of All Nerves / Carol Verett / May 2004
What Do Meeting Planners Want? Hotel Sales Managers Want to Know! / Carol Verret / May 2004
Revenue Management -- The Integration of Revenue Drivers / Carol Verret / March 2004
CYBER SALES -- Hotel Sales in an Internet World is the New Reality / Carol Verret / February 2004
The New Realities of Hotel Sales - Focus on Revenue Generation / Carol Verret / January 2004
Hotel Sales -- Innovation in the Face of Limitations / Carol Verret / November 2003
The Good News & the Bad News; Improving Economy = New Hotel Development / Carol Verret / October 2003
Leadership - General Managers Managing the Sales Process / Carol Verret  / October 2003
When the Crystal Ball is Cloudy; Marketing Plans for 2004 / Carol Verret / July 2003
Partnership of Sales and Technology; Using Tech Tools to "Sell" the Hotels / Carol Verret  / July 2003
Back to the Basics? The Basics of Hotel Sales Have Changed! / May 2003
Creating Sales "HUNTERS": The Skill Sets Required in the New Hotel Sales Environment / April 2003
Heightened Security Requires New Strategies in Hotels Sales / Carol Verret Consulting and Training / Mar 2003
Revenue Recovery - Building The ‘A’ Team in Sales / Carol Verret / January 2003
Contingency Marketing Plan – War In Iraq! / Carol Verret / November 2002
Playing the Rate Game - Positioning -- Positioning -- Positioning! / Carol Verret / October 2002
The Rate Game - Playing to Win / Carol Verret / October 2002
The Challenge of Marketing Independent Boutique Hotels / Carol Verett / August 2002
Hotel Sales in a Limited Service Environment - The Rules Have Changed / Carol Verett / August 2002
The General Manager’s Role in Sales -Chief Marketing Officer of the Hotel / Carol Verret / April 2002
100% Market Share Penetration is Not Good Enough / Carol Verett / January 2002
The Key to REVPAR Recovery –  New Business Development / Carol Verett / December  2001
Trash the 2002 Marketing Plan - And Just Start Over / Carol Verett / September 2001
How to Use Consultants Effectively –  A View From the Other Side  / Carol Verret / August 2001
How Soft Is Your Hotel's Economic Landing?  / Carol Verret / Aprl 2001
The ‘Value Proposition’: Marketing Yourself to Prospective Employees / Carol Verret / January 2001
Generation Y:  Motivating and Training a New Generation of Employees / Carol Verret / November  2000
Why Customer Service Seminars Don't Work / Carol Verret / October 2000
Creating a Culture of Customer Service / Carol Verret Consulting and Training / Sept 2000 
FAT, DUMB AND HAPPY – The Seasonal Boom and  Bust Cycle / Carol Verret / August 2000
Surf's Up - Ride the Wave or Miss the Boat -The Effective Use of Technology in Hotel Sales / Carol Verret / July 2000 
Measuring Effectiveness of  Hotel Sales Departments / Carol Verret / June 2000
Hotel Sales Training - The Need for Immediate Results / Carol Verret/ May 2000



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