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How to make salespeople in hotels more productive

salespeopleIf your salespeople cannot bring in revenue six times what they cost the hotel, it is better to get the revenue through Booking.com or another OTA charging similar fees as Booking.com. If each salesperson brings in more revenue, the customer acquisition cost will be lower than the cost of receiving bookings from any OTA. Therefore, the general manager should invest in their salespeople so they become more productive. The significant investment is in the salesperson, and the total return on investment in sales will be significantly higher for a small additional investment to enhance productivity.

The general manager must remove three significant obstacles that make it difficult for hotel salespeople to sell. The first is the need for more information because it is fragmented and, therefore, difficult to access. The second obstacle is poor time management because most processes are manual. The third is the need for tight collaboration with marketing and revenue management due to conflicting agendas. Let’s look at a few examples of how to solve each obstacle.

Lack of information

Hotel salespeople require access to accurate real-time information to make informed decisions, provide excellent customer service, and close deals effectively.

The obstacle

Finding customer information: Customer data, including contact information, preferences, booking history, and booking behavior, are spread out in different systems and must be handled manually in many hotels. The data is essential to enable salespeople to understand customers’ needs and personalize their communication.
Finding essential incoming inquiries for group and event bookings: Inquiries arrive at the hotel in many ways, such as through telephone calls, emails, RFPs, etc. Many people touch these inquiries before they give them to the salesperson. As a result, valuable time is often lost, eventually leading to a lost deal.

The solution

Data centralization: All customer-related data can be stored in a centralized location, ensuring that salespeople can access the most up-to-date and accurate information about clients, leads, and opportunities.
Automatic data updates: Integrate data extraction from other systems to ensure that salespeople can always access the most current data on customer interactions, contract details, and sales performance.

The benefits

Informed decision-making: Real-time information enables salespeople to make data-driven decisions, responding promptly to customer inquiries and emerging opportunities. This can lead to improved sales and higher conversion rates.
Increased efficiency: Accurate real-time information reduces the risk of errors, miscommunication, and time-consuming manual processes. This can lead to increased efficiency and productivity for salespeople.

Poor time management

Hotel salespeople frequently have to juggle multiple tasks and priorities, making managing their time difficult. This can result in missed opportunities, difficulty maintaining client relationships, and stress.

The obstacle

Inefficient processes: Inadequate or outdated processes and systems can slow sales and create inefficiencies. For example, manual data entry, lack of automation, or poorly integrated systems can consume valuable time that could be spent on more productive tasks.
Reactive approach: A reactive approach to sales, rather than proactive planning, can lead to salespeople spending most of their time addressing urgent issues or responding to client requests, making it difficult to manage their time effectively in addressing long-term objectives.

The solution

Sales pipeline management: CRM systems enable salespeople to track leads and opportunities through the sales pipeline, providing a clear visual representation of their progress. This can help salespeople manage their time better by focusing on tasks that move deals forward.
Reporting and analytics: CRM platforms provide valuable insights and reports on customer production so hotel salespeople can follow up on contracted volumes. Reports on customer booking behavior and correct room and revenue reports. Faster and more accurate customer reports lead to more effective time management by focusing on activities that generate the best results.

The benefits

Streamlined processes: Integration with other hotel systems, such as PMS, revenue management systems, and marketing tools, streamlines processes and ensures that salespeople can access the latest information. This helps salespeople work more efficiently and reduces the risk of errors or miscommunication.
Increased productivity: A CRM allows salespeople to manage their leads, opportunities, and customer interactions more effectively, leading to higher conversion rates and more closed deals. Dashboards, real-time insights, and analytics help salespeople identify opportunities to grow revenue and profits faster.
Work-life balance: By automating tasks, improving efficiency, and increasing productivity, CRM systems can help salespeople better manage their workloads, reduce stress, and maintain a healthier work-life balance

Lack of collaboration

Hotel salespeople may struggle with collaborating with marketing and revenue management departments. The significant conflicts often stem from differences in priorities, communication gaps, and a need for precise goal alignment.

The obstacle

Divergent objectives: Sales, marketing, and revenue management teams may have different priorities and goals. Sales teams typically focus on booking events, group sales, and closing deals, while marketing teams concentrate on brand awareness, lead generation, and customer engagement. Revenue management teams, on the other hand, aim to maximize revenue through strategic pricing and inventory management. These divergent objectives can sometimes lead to conflicts and hinder collaboration.
Data discrepancies: Siloed, inaccurate or outdated data can result in conflicts between departments. For instance, if the sales team has different information than the revenue management team, it can lead to confusion, missed opportunities, and potential customer dissatisfaction.

The solution

Goal alignment: A CRM system can help align the goals and objectives of sales, marketing, and revenue management teams by providing a clear picture of the sales pipeline, performance metrics, and KPIs. This helps ensure all departments achieve the same overall targets and reduces potential conflicts.
Centralized data: Another aspect of having all data in one system to be used by all roles in the commercial team is that they relate to one truth. This ensures that everyone is working with the same information and reduces the chances of miscommunication or data discrepancies.

The benefits

Increased efficiency: Enhanced collaboration allows departments to share resources, insights, and expertise, leading to increased efficiency and streamlined processes.
Competitive advantage: Hotels with strong collaboration between sales, marketing, and revenue management are better positioned to identify and capitalize on new opportunities, giving them a competitive edge.
Higher employee morale: When departments work together, employees are more likely to feel engaged, supported, and valued, leading to higher confidence and better overall performance.
Tags: collaboration, productivity, salespeople, time management

CEO, Demand Calendar

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Demand Calendar is an integrated marketing, sales, and revenue management software for hotels of all sizes.

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