Hey Independents! Are You Thinking About Joining An Association?
November 2, 2016 9:03am
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. (www.lma.ca)
For most independent hoteliers, the decision to join an association such as Leading, Preferred, Small Luxury or Relais & Chateaux is a critical and complex decision. All of these organizations have stepped up their game of late, with grand improvements to both their web and sales offerings so that they can all stay relevant as traveler behavior changes. Moreover, the impetus to participate is exacerbated by the proliferation of inventory in the alternate lodging sector – that is, Airbnb – coupled with the marketing behemoths that are the OTAs.
The costs of joining an association are not inconsequential, nor are the rebranding and conversion overhead costs, especially with regard to hard and soft goods upgrades to meet predetermined brand standards. For many smaller properties, this association relationship may represent the single largest component of the annual marketing budget. Accordingly, the decision requires due consideration from multiple departments.
Here are some discussion points and actions that should form a good part of your due diligence. I’ve set aside the obvious ones, such as understanding each association’s base and reservation fees structure.
Remember, you only get out what you put in. Once you sign, you need to fully commit yourself to the relationship. You need to be prepared, have buy-in from your team and ensure more than ‘lip service’ is given to your participation.
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Editor’s note: To discuss business challenges or to discuss speaking engagements please contact Larry directly.
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One of the world’s most published writers in hospitality, Larry Mogelonsky is the owner of Hotel Mogel Consulting Limited and founder of LMA Communications Inc., an award-winning marketing agency based in Toronto. His experience encompasses hotel properties around the world, both branded and independent, and ranging from luxury and boutique to select-service. Larry is also a principal of Cayuga Hospitality Consultants and is on several boards for companies focused on hotel technology. His work includes three books “Are You an Ostrich or a Llama?” (2012), “Llamas Rule” (2013) and “Hotel Llama” (2015).
You can reach Larry at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss hotel business challenges or to book speaking engagements.
Contact: Larry Mogelonsky
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