News for the Hospitality Executive
Keys to Success
A Simple and Sometimes Overlooked Way to Improve Group
Convention Business: an Organized and Concise Fact Sheet
by Dr. John Hogan CHE CHA MHS, September 27, 2010
Not every group limits their hotel usage to large convention hotels and in fact, many larger groups look to offer a range of property types, amenities and pricing options. Smaller groups often elect to choose different types of properties as they work to build or maintain attendance.
Put yourself in the shoes of a meeting planner who has (in all probability) not ever been to your hotel before unless you are the major hotel connected to a large convention center. These meeting professionals are just as busy as hoteliers are and they have their share of challenges in budgets, programs, marketing campaigns and people issues.
They can look at emails, brochures and photographs on your web site, but if they cannot make a personal site inspection, they must trust either their own professional instincts and/or other people’s experience to make the decision on whether or not to consider your hotel.
Meeting planners and travel agents have learned one way to compare the proverbial “apple to apple” when seeking sites for their clients’ meetings and conventions is to have a hotel RFP completed and submitted by properties being considered. The RFP (Request for Proposal) is well known to larger hotels, but the concept and information included in these documents can have a positive impact on hotels of all sizes.
Even if your property does not regularly receive these RFPs, the fact that you have in essence what is an organized and concise “fact sheet” will add a certain degree of professionalism to any presentations you make. A potential client considering your hotel will recognize that you understand both sides of the booking agreement and will likely have a positive impression, including when they obtain this information by email or from your web site.
Consider the following elements of a detailed RFP as a guide as you develop your own fact sheet:
1. General information (One would be surprised at how many people omit some of this important data.)
(a) Full property name, physical address (not PO Box), local and toll free phone numbers, direct numbers to sales if appropriate, web address and email contacts2. Contacts
(a) Principal meetings or group contact at hotel3. General Rate Information (This advises the potential client of the value you place on their business and some details of your revenue management practices, i.e. your high and low seasons) List all rates in both single and double rates if appropriate
(a) Standard (rack) rates4. Safety and Security (Do not let this be a negative factor. The fact that you detail your awareness highlights your overall commitment to quality and the concern you have for the safety and well-being of your guest and staff). Be specific.
(a) Number of floors5. Hotel Services and Facilities (If your hotel has limited in house services, it is essential to identify services and facilities adjacent to or near your hotel)
(a) Restaurant(s) – this should include name, type of food offerings (ethnic, seafood/steak, casual dining, etc)Consistent use of this kind of fact sheet can bring competent sales managers more focus and business, because they share specifically more about their hotel and its strengths than many of their competitors.
Feel free to share an idea for a column at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements ………….
And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.
Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant
and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality
industry events. He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com)
of successful corporate and academic mentors delivering focused and affordable
counsel in solving specific challenges facing the hospitality industry.
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|Also See:||A Different Look at MBWA - Does There Need to be a Manager's Time Out / Dr John Hogan / September 2010|
|Hotel Common Sense: 7 Practical Steps on MBWA / Dr John Hogan / September 2010|