In today’s Social Era, the previously perceived silos – Marketing and Sales – are converging. This is especially true in the hospitality industry. And, this convergence trend has been joined by Revenue Management which is effectively narrowing, if not deciding, rates to be quoted to individuals and group business. Further, Convention Service Managers (CSMs), who detail group business, are increasingly assuming traditional sales roles such as supplying the group business customer detailed customization input BEFORE the contract is signed.
Additionally, with the rise of third parties – prime examples: HelmsBriscoe (an independent hotel group sales force), Cvent (a type of Match.com gatekeeper connecting buyers and sellers) and Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) (such as Expedia and others), traditional marketing and sales is being turned upside. Thus, the roles and structure of classic hospitality marketers and hospitality salespeople needs to be updated and reexamined.
Marketing remains primarily a business positioning function and a sales lead generator. Sales remains primarily a lead closer, but as mentioned above, Revenue Management and CSMs are increasingly supporting the ability to close leads. Traditionally, sales people at a local venue actively pursued a marketing function, lead generator. But, Sales is finding it increasingly more difficult to generate leads as buyers block them from traditional cold-calling.
There is a trending convergence between marketing and sales. No longer are separate silos effective, efficient or profitable. And, other functions, as mentioned above, are converging their value-added contributions to marketing and sales. This convergence is affecting the entire hospitality industry: Lodging, CVBs, Event Companies, DMCs, Catering Companies, etc.
Mission of Hospitality, Marketing and Sales SIG
Hospitality, Marketing and Sales SIG is undergoing unprecedented changes in the current social era. Within this environment, the Hospitality, Marketing and Sales SIG is committed to the following:
What We Do. We Discover, Develop, and Disseminate (3-Ds) the most current industry practices and academic research focused on hospitality marketing and sales. We share this among ourselves, other ICHRIE SIGS, and other constituents through social media, traditional papers, and face-to-face meetings, presentations and workshops. We also serve as a networking entity.
How We Discover. Members of this SIG include industry practitioners and hospitality academics. We learn from each other and conduct dedicated, relevant, practical and theoretic, research.
How We Develop. Research must be packaged and put into a consumable form for ease of sharing with and dissemination to our constituents. The packaging may be downloadable research papers, blogs, website, presentations, workshops, etc.
How We Disseminate. Currently, we have a listserv which, while still a viable channel of distribution, is somewhat limited. Other channels of distribution include traditional face-to-face presentations and workshops at the annual ICHRIE conference. We plan to develop additional robust multiple channels to leverage Web 2.0 technology. These include social media SIG group based discussions, a Blog, and a dedicated SIG website presence where we can share and archive our value-added creations.
What is the SIG Structure. It is open to any ICHRIE member. It is not exclusive to hospitality marketing and/or sales, but intends to attract the growing related and converging interests - for example, we want Revenue Management, Convention Service Management, and other input. We currently organize with a SIG Chair, but want Co-Chairs and a SIG committee to ensure implementation of our objectives.