2017 Corporate Account Survey Instructions and Best Practices
In ongoing efforts to provide your hotel with strategic opportunities to secure business from the Corporate Transient Market, the Preferred Hotels & Resorts (PHR) Global Sales team annually seeks your assistance in completing the Corporate Transient Account Survey. The Survey is accessible via the PHR PreferredNet Portal.
The information you provide will supply our sales team critical insights that may give your hotel the opportunity to be considered in the RFP solicitation process. This information is also required by the Corporate Travel Decision Makers.
PHR Key Managed Accounts - We ask that you complete no more than 25 of your target accounts (IN ADDITION to your existing managed accounts). By strategically focusing on fewer key accounts that would best fit your property, we can jointly improve our measurement on RFP success.
We have highlighted some best practices and critical components:
- Approach the survey from the travel manager’s perspective. They are reading thousands of submissions. What will stand out about your hotel?
- Be sure to read the invitation letters and terms and conditions from the previous year to see what criteria the account is looking for from hotel partners
- Try not to repeat information in the business case that was already mentioned in other parts of the survey
- Bullet points are the best way to highlight information. Keep the information short and simple. Stick to facts!
Historical Room Nights Received – Transient:
Provide your total transient room night production for each account by year, including both GDS and direct bookings. Room night production is a key component for consideration into a new account and for retaining an existing account.
Historical Room Nights Received – Group:
Provide your total group room night production for each account by year, including both GDS and direct bookings. While most corporate travel managers are looking for transient information only, some are now including group questions in their RFPs. Group room nights indicate the account has some history and knowledge of your property.
Best Competitive Rate:
Know what your competition is offering and be prepared to offer a competitive rate. Most accounts are not looking to increase the cost of a program. If you feel your hotel is worth the rate, will the travel manager be willing to increase the cost of their program by adding your hotel at a higher rate?
Value Added Amenities:
Know the account requirements and what your competitor is offering. Are you able to offer the same or better? Examples: complimentary Wi-Fi, breakfast, transportation, health club access, food and beverage discounts, local calls etc. Do not include what is already complimentary.
Local Office Address & Accurate Distances:
List the local office address and the accurate distance between your hotel and the target account office. In most cases, it should be no more than 2 to 5 miles. If the distance is greater, how many competitive hotels are between you and the local office? If it’s more than 3 competitive hotels, is this still a good target account? How many room nights are required in the city by the account? This will have a direct effect on the number of hotels
needed for their program.
Local Relationship Contact Information:
- Provide the name, address, phone number and email address of your local contact.
- Establish and strengthen local relationships with target accounts. Although the account may be managed in a different city, many travel managers rely on their regional colleagues for input during the decision-making process. The local contact is becoming an integral part of the RFP process. Invite them for a site visit prior to RFP season whenever possible.
Know your competition. Be able to list who they are, the rate & amenities they’re offering. List the distance to the local office from your competitor’s hotel.
Compelling Business Case:
This is one of the most important parts of the Corporate Survey.
- Read the invitation letter and terms and conditions for the target account on the PreferredNet Portal. These documents will highlight what the account is looking for from their hotel partners.
- The case should be specific to every target account
- Keep the information short and to the point
Here is a sample question for a business case from one of our managed account Travel Managers:
In a few short comments, convince XYZ Company to invite your hotel to participate in our 2017 RFP process. Please provide a "local perspective" on why the company should select your hotel instead of hotels which are currently used in this area.
Selling point examples:
- Newly opened hotel close to office or recent hotel renovations (list dollar amount of renovation)
- Strong relationship with local company contact and/or local contracted rates
- Tested Security program in place – Security manager has visited property; List name, contact information and date of last visit (if applicable)
- New office recently opened close to hotel (Be sure to provide address and distance.)
- Restaurant and outlet discounts (list percentage off)
- Convenient access to airport (within 5 miles/kilometers) transportation provided (list cost savings amount)
Do not mention landscaping, spas, shopping, beaches or anything that would not be of importance to a Corporate Travel Manager.
Green practices are an added opportunity to strengthen your case. Examples: Hotels using soy-based inks for collateral material, low-flow shower heads, furniture from sustainable forests, card key energy shut-offs, support programs such as LEED and other green hotel programs.
Please contact your local PHR Sales Representative should you have any questions.