The Secrets Behind the Most Successful Group Business Proposals
April 26, 2017 6:20am
Which group sales proposals usually make it on a meeting planner's short list?
A templated proposal that sounds like every other hotel, brimming with business clichés and corporate speak?
Or, a proposal that reflects the personality of the hotel sales manager AND offers targeted solutions that address the planner’s goals?
To hit your sales goals, your proposal better be impressing clients with every word instead of stopping your ambitious sale dead in its tracks.
So, ditch the one-size-fits-all template that is shared amongst your sales team. Planners want to work with a person, not a robot.
Customize, customize, customize – in both style and substance.
Here are five rules to live by when crafting your next group sales proposal:
AVOID THE FEATURES LIST
A common proposal mistake: Leading with a long list of all of your hotel’s amenities and features…whether the planner needs it or not.
Instead, focus on objectives – of both the meeting itself and the planner’s. What are your hotel’s features that will be a part of the solution? In what ways can your hotel deliver benefits that directly address their goals? Lining up your dates, rates and space is the easy part. Create a hard-to-pass-up value in your hotel by concentrating on the solutions that explicitly meet their event aspirations.
BE YOURSELF, NOT A HOTEL
To capture and hold a reader’s attention, ‘write like you speak.’ So, loosen up a little, and let your personality come through. Make it sound like a letter to a friend, not a formal business letter.
One way to do that is to use an active voice, instead of a passive voice. Ditch fancy acronyms and hotel jargon. In reality, you’re selling yourself and your team to the planner, not just the rates, dates and space. So, establish right away that you’re a quality and trusted partner in planning by being authentic and personable.
FOCUS ON THEIR NEEDS, NOT YOURS
Just like everyone else, meeting planners are asking ‘what’s in it for me?’ Planners don’t care how wonderful, beautiful, amazing, first-class your hotel is.
When they receive your proposal, they just want to know you plan on meeting their and their attendees’ needs. Gather as much intelligence on the group as you can. Call the planner to get more insight and really LISTEN to what they’re telling you and gather all the intel you’ll need to structure an irresistible and relevant proposal.
FOCUS ON THE INVESTMENT, NOT THE COST
Watch your words and how you talk about money. There’s a vast difference between investment and cost, yet hotel sales teams tend to focus too much on words such as rate, fee, expenses, and price. Those words trigger images of money being drained from a planner’s budget.
In comparison, an investment means you’re gaining something substantial in return. Companies and organizations hold meetings because they expect to get something back, so it’s vital to truly understand the meeting and the meeting planner’s objectives. You’ll use these same objectives to structure your solutions.
And, when it comes time to discuss prices, change the language. Demonstrate how their investment in money and time will pay off large dividends by partnering with you and your team. Building this foundation for a mutually beneficial relationship will result in long-term gain and even repeat business.
ADD SOME POP
This is where you can add the WOW factor to help boost your proposal to the top of the pile.
Yes, drafting new group sales proposals sound daunting.
It will require creativity and stellar writing.
It will be time consuming, so it’s vital to separate the highly qualified RFPs from the rest.
But time spent on creating a dynamic sales proposal that will make your clients feel excited to work with you is the most lucrative way to spend your day.
Tags: group business,
meetings and events
Groups360 is the most trusted marketplace for meetings. Our number one priority is to bring transparency, simplicity and objectivity to group travel. We’ve done that by creating industry-specific platforms that allow event planners, hoteliers and DMOs to make smarter, better, faster decisions.
Contact: Kemp Gallineau
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