Hotel Sales Managers are too Weak
- Sales manager needs to have ‘balls’. He or she needs to have no fear of losing any account. Sales negotiations are like bluff poker; the other party will detect your fear and use it against you.
- Based on budgets and targets revenue management strategies are defined. Corporate rates are based on this. Corporate rate buckets are created.
- Accounts are analyzed on a monthly basis on production, stay patterns, commission costs, additional spending, and displacement.
- Based on account production and preset parameters a corporate rate bucket is assigned as part of an overall strategy.
- A thorough analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of competition has to be done. Sales managers need stay at competitor hotels to understand what they are up against. We need to copy the good from them and improve on our weaknesses.
- We need to brainstorm on how we can deliver more unique service than the competition. The difference is in the little things. Personal service is highly valued by business travelers!
- Just like with revenue management in corporate sales we have to add value instead of lowering rate. Free newspapers, office transfer, public transport ticket and free wifi are just a few of many options to package and add value to corporate offers.
- Go into sales meetings with your numbers, just like your opponent. Show him where he fits in your budget. This way you position yourself as the stronger negotiation partner. The corporate travel manager will understand that if he wants in, it will only be possible at the price you offered.
- Show no fear! If the corporate travel manager says he needs a better rate, simply reply that it does not fit in your budget. Saying no is the strongest strategy in a negotiation. Hold your ground!
- Any corporate account that wants a lower price then has been budgeted, signifies a loss of revenue, and will need to be replaced by other business. Simply lowering the rate will set your hotel up for failure.
Patrick Landman @ Xotels