Hotel sales pros and the simple request for information

Hotel sales pros break through sales resistance

Hotel sales pros remove resistance at the point of sale: type 1

Hotel sales pros have developed the ability to react naturally to resistance shown by clients. You will become a hotel sales pro too, as you gain experience and practice.

In the next few blog posts, I’m going to explore several ways that a hotel sales pro removes resistance at the point of sale. There are three kinds of resistance. If you understand which resistance you are facing at the time, you will have the tools to eliminate or reduce the resistance, or at least know where to go with it.

Type of resistance number 1 is called a simple request for information. It often happens at the end of your presentation, and the customer has a question. It’s not a big deal. This one probably doesn’t even register on the “resistance scale” of hotel sales pros, as they often see this and deal quickly and easily with it.

For example, if you were to finish your site inspection, and you say “Well, that concludes, Kim, our site inspection; how do you like the hotel?”

And Kim turns to me and says “You know Steve, I really didn’t get a chance to see the suites. You know, we do have some hospitality in the evenings, and you didn’t mention anything about the suites.”

How does the hotel sales pro react? For all the conversation, for all his homework and research, for all the information that was just shared in their site inspection, it didn’t come up that she needed suites in the evening for hospitality. No big deal, it’s certainly not a deal killer.

And so what I might say is “Gee Kim, I’m sorry, I did not realize that suites were important to you. Let’s go over to the front desk, let me see which suites are available, and let’s go upstairs and take a look at them.”

That is what a hotel sales pro does. This is removing resistance at the point of sale. It’s a simple request for additional information. It’s something that wasn’t discovered when you were doing your research on the account. It just didn’t come up; she didn’t mention it, you didn’t know- no big deal. It’s certainly no challenge for the hotel sales pro.

Let’s look at an alternative scenario. I exaggerate to make the point…

“So Kim, how do you like the hotel now that we’ve completed the site inspection, we’re in the lobby of our hotel, how do you like the hotel?”

“Well Steve, it was great, but I didn’t get a chance to see the suites.”

“Oh, I didn’t realize suites were important to you.”

“Yes, suites are very important to us.”

“Sorry, you can’t see the suites.”

You’d never do that, right? No hotel sales pro would. But laugh as we may at that example, we often find in our test calls responses that are the equivalent, and potentially equally devastating.

We do test calls on behalf of our hotel clients, and pose as meeting planners. In those test calls we might ask, for example, if there are charges for parking be sure to include it in the proposal. Do you have high speed internet access in the meeting rooms, and if so, if there’s a cost, would you please include it in the proposal? If it’s free, please include it in the proposal. And then the proposal arrives and there’s no mention of parking, and there’s no mention of high speed internet access.

That’s denying a simple request for additional information. Hotel sales pros don’t do that. You mean I ask the meeting planner am going to have to now pick up the phone and say “Hey Jennifer, I thought we talked about high-speed internet access and I thought we talked about parking…”

No that won’t happen in the real world of hotel sales, because they’re NOT calling you back. They have two other proposals from two other hotels which did include those items in the proposal. As the baseball ump would say, “You’re out!”

Even though yours might have been the best hotel, you did not respond to their request for additional information. It’s unlikely they’re going to call you back. Why? Because you failed to include a detail that was important to them, and what’s the decision making process always based on? The details, of course. If they feel comfortable that you can handle the details, you’re probably going to get the piece of business. If they do not feel comfortable that you can handle the details, they have other hotels they can go to that can handle the details.

Be a hotel sales pro. Respond to the detail requests that make up a simple request for information.

 

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Posted 8/6/12

 

 

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