Hotel Events Resources For Hotel Managers And Event Planners
During peak travel seasons, fully-booked banquet halls and conference rooms are all the proof you need that special events and private parties are key to your hotel’s success.
Of course, planning and managing hotel events means having a thousand things to worry about at once. Thankfully, there are more resources than ever to help you and your team manage the hectic business of hotel events.
From apps that organize your staff to platforms promoting your hotel’s social event services to a wider professional audience, here are some of our favorite resources for helping hotel events go off without a hitch.
Making Your Hotel The Best Choice For Events
If your hotel is conveniently located in an area where there are few function spaces nearby, booking with you should be a no-brainer for local event planners.
But if you are in a busier area, like a New York City hotel, you’re competing with lots of other facilities and event spaces for bookings.
If this is the case, there are a few resources you need to use to make your hotel the top choice for businesses, organizations and others looking for the perfect event venue.
Create Packages For Event Planners
Corporate event planners often look to hotels as their first choice when setting up conferences and other large group events. The amenities and travel gifts available at a business-class hotel cannot be beaten; attendees have no need to go elsewhere for accommodations or even leisure activities.
However, when booking for large events, planners often have to reserve each item separately, such as:
- Banquet hall — One that can accommodate plenty of seating. This may also include renting out audio-visual equipment.
- Conference/board rooms — May also be needed for breakout sessions, interviews or for smaller group presentations.
- Guest rooms for attendees — A place for guests to stay the length of the event.
It’s a hassle to book these amenities individually — and it’s expensive.
That’s why having a hotel meeting package as a special offer is a great way to make your hotel extra appealing to planners who wish to save time and money. You’re offering discount travel and expenses.
A hotel meeting package is an all-inclusive rate for events. The rate is charged per person attending the event and includes the cost of everything your customer may need from check-in to checkout.
Accommodations, equipment rentals, use of the event space and other considerations — such as catering — can all be included in the cost of a hotel meeting package.
Provide The Best Event And Meeting Spaces
The best price and location in the area won’t mean much if your hotel can’t provide adequate facilities for business meetings and other events.
Making your hotel the ultimate choice includes considerations such as:
- Sizes of your meeting rooms and event halls
- Technology necessary to run events (like high-speed Wi-Fi)
- Overall comfort and ambiance of the space
A few small changes can make your hotel more appealing for business events in the future.
Increase Visibility Through Online Travel Sites
The use of online travel sites has become so widespread that most travelers go there first before calling hotels directly.
Tech Tools For Hotel Event Planners And Managers
Rather than drowning in paper schedules and disorganized inboxes, event planners and hotel managers now have a bevy of technological tools to help plan and execute events.
Mobile apps allow meeting planners, hotel managers and staff to stay organized and on track before, during and even after an event at a hotel.
Use Apps During Your Events To Drive Engagement
For clients, events are a large investment of time and money.
For an event to succeed, organizers need to feel their investment was worthwhile. As an event planner, you are responsible for ensuring that your attendees will return for future events.
It’s key to demonstrate that your events can hold the audience’s attention and encourage their participation. These apps can help! Include them in your packages or recommend them to your clients to demonstrate your expertise.
CrowdCompass is a mobile app that not only allows attendees to register for events, but is designed to drive attendee engagement. The app helps attendees prepare for and navigate the featured itinerary, and encourages them to engage with the event even after it has ended.
Event guests can access the following crucial information:
- An itinerary that is customizable to their needs
- Maps and floor plans of the hotel event space
- Networking with other attendees
It also lets planners collect feedback from eventgoers through surveys that can be taken both during and after the event.
Sessions, speakers, exhibitors and registration rules can also be integrated into the app so that attendees will not have to be redirected to another website to view them.
Another app that drives engagement at your event is Hubilo. It includes features that organize and speed up the planning phase of functions.
Hubilo allows event planners to plan and track their budget and stay connected with their sponsors, partners and guest speakers on one platform.
This saves the time of switching between spreadsheets and emails to keep track of what’s going on before and during an event.
Use Apps To Enhance Security And Safety
The safety and security of your guests should always be your biggest priority.
Hotel events present more challenges on this front than your normal day-to-day operations.
An influx of guests and temporary can often stretch hotel security thin.
However, using safety and security apps during events can help prevent things from falling through the cracks.
SaferWatch is a security system app designed to protect event attendees and staff in an emergency.
It allows guests to report incidents through mobile devices, immediately alerting staff and first responders. Event coordinators and hotel staff can then act quickly to prevent crime, injury or panic.
The app also allows employees to communicate with attendees en masse. Staff can instantly send alerts to event attendees during an emergency using the app. This can include evacuation alerts, silver alerts and other critical communications that keep attendees safe.
Networking In The Business Travel Industry
As an event planner, you know that you can’t pull off an event alone.
The corporate travel industry comprises countless professionals who can provide services and form a strong network to ensure you can pull off events worth remembering.
Network With Hotel Managers
The relationship between event planners and hotel management should benefit all parties involved.
Both have an interest in a thriving industry for meetings, incentive travel, conferences and exhibitions (MICE), as well as making sure that successful events reflect both the organizer and the hotel in a favorable light.
To make these things happen, event planners and hotel managers must reach out to one another to form a strong working relationship.
Connect With Other Event Professionals
Connecting with other event planning or hospitality professionals broadens your options when planning for your next meeting.
Joining a local chapter of a business network is a great first step to expanding your own personal network.
Traditional groups such as Business Network International (BNI) meet in person all over the world. They connect professionals in many industries to the resources, business partners and referrals they need.
Event planners can also connect online directly with others in the meetings and events industry. Meeting Professionals International is a platform where event professionals can introduce themselves, ask questions and receive helpful feedback, ideas and solutions from their peers.
Find Great Event Staff
Events don’t happen without staff working hard behind the scenes.
Hotels and event planning businesses may already have trusted staff on hand.
But certain events may need extra staff, such as:
- Food service
It takes a lot of time and effort to properly search for, interview, vet, hire, onboard, train and manage new staff in time for your event.
That is where event staffing services can help.
Many event staffing agencies are partnered with major hotel chains throughout the United States. GravyWork and ATN Event Staffing are both resources that can help you to find staff for your event, even at the last minute.
Even after the setbacks the hotel meetings and events industries have experienced during the past few years, there is no better time to host or plan a hotel event.
More resources are available than ever to make your hotel events successful, memorable experiences that will delight your clients.
Erin Sayer is the Senior Growth Marketing Manager at Hotel Engine. She spends her days keeping a pulse on growth trends, and finding and activating new and unique ways to grow businesses. When she’s not doing ‘all the growth things’, Erin loves spending time on the water or up in the mountains with her 2 favorite Australian Shepherds. She is also a self-proclaimed book nerd and true crime junkie.