Participants in HSMAI's 2016 Hotel Chief Sales Officer Roundtable in Washington DC discussed the issues facing hotel sales professionals today.
Among the top issues and trends facing the discipline and the hotel businesses heading in to 2017 are:
- Alternative payments are evolving at a quick pace resulting in the need for a common platform for banking and financial transactions
- Delivering the message to owners that product matters, hospitality matters, and sales matters
- The impact of the sharing economy is still being measured
- There is a new thinking about destination: when demand changes in major markets because of disruptions like Zika or Brexit, it gives secondary destinations the opportunity to be highlighted
- There needs to be more of an emphasis on travelers experience, and attendee experience
- The rise in the attrition rate, which has doubled in one year form 5% to just under 10 in some markets
- Additional layers of cost associated with an increased percentage of groups booking through 3rd parties
- For leisure, forecasts are shifting up until the day before or the day of day of arrival, often driven by technology
- Political imbalance is affecting disposable income and could impact travel
The session was sponsored by Knowland, Rainmaker, and Social Tables. Hotel companies represented at the Roundtable included AM Resort, Carlson Hotels, Extended Stay America, Fairmont Raffles Hotels Internationals, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, IHG, Red Roof Inn, Two Roads Hospitality, Warwick International Hotels, and WoodSpring Suites. HSMAI brings together Chief Marketing Officers, Chief Digital Marketing Officers, Chief Sales Officers, Chief Revenue Officers, and Hotel Management Company Sales & Marketing Executives through the year.