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Is your hotel sales team running fast enough?

 

Jun 24, 2017 | 2 min read

As sales acceleration technologies become increasingly mainstream, simpler to use and more effective, sales teams are embracing the power of tech like never before.

“As always, sales was the last to figure out the power of new technology offered by computing and the Internet, but arguably sales is once again the most impactful influence on business.”
– Ken Krogue, President, InsideSales.com

When it comes to ranking the most technologically savvy employees in a company, sales people have traditionally not landed high on the list. But times have changed, and that list now needs an update.

Companies are finally becoming enlightened to the fact that when you equip your sales team with better, more powerful tools to do their job, the impact is profound and the results impressive.

Sales acceleration is all about increasing the velocity of your sales process. If your sales team isn’t currently working with a sales acceleration technology, there are three chief reasons it’s time for that to change.

First of all, your competitors are most likely using, and taking full advantage of this potent technology. Secondly you’d be dramatically increasing productivity. Lastly, (and who wouldn’t want this?) you’d boost revenues right now.

Sales Acceleration 101

If you’re new to the rapidly burgeoning world of these technologies, perhaps it’s worth starting with a primer on how they benefit sales teams.

Sales acceleration technologies help sales team to:

  • Improve conversion rates
  • Reduce sales cycle times
  • Increase quota attainment ratios
  • Increase the number, and quality, of sales opportunities

At the end of the day, it’s all about optimizing the sales process and doing more with less.

Many of these tools have a huge impact on businesses very quickly and easily, with minimal effort required to get them implemented. Most of these technologies are now simple plugin or web-based applications (thanks IT Department but won’t be needing your help here).

European sales teams now spend on average £4,228 per sales rep on sales acceleration technology. The size of this market will hit $30b by 2017 in the US alone. For comparison the worldwide Customer Relationship Management (CRM) industry is supposed to reach $36b US that same year.

Emailing smarter

While these new technologies streamline and facilitate every aspect of the sales process, this is especially true when it comes to emails, which have become the de facto communication channel for sales teams.

In the world of sales acceleration technology, emails are “the low hanging fruit”, because when combined with the appropriate tools, emails transform into the most efficient and productive way for a business to provide an immediate return on investment.

Sales emails are an easy channel to measure and optimize. There’s a reason why 16% of a company’s budget for sales acceleration technologies is related to emails. Simply put, it’s because they have a decisive payoff.

Beyond ‘batch and blast’

Email sales acceleration technology first, and foremost, increases salespeople’s productivity. It’s now possible to craft highly personalised emails to groups of prospects or existing clients at once with efficiency and remarkable ease.

Sophisticated, data-driven, content recommendation engines enable salespeople to engage with prospects like never before. The engine actually suggests what to say and which content to share (images, brochures, videos, etc.) at each stage of the sales funnel.

Moreover, once salespeople send emails, they can now track their prospect’s behavior with the email’s content. It’s now possible to see, in real time, who opened the email, what links were clicked on, how much time they spent on your website, etc.. This provides a clear-cut picture of the prospect’s level of engagement and focus of interest. This arms sales teams with highly valuable, actionable information to prioritize their efforts. The result is increased sales performance.

This leading-edge technology ultimately provides the visibility required by salespeople to better understand, and serve, their prospect’s needs. With the newly acquired data, it becomes simple for sales managers to optimize communications across teams and for companies to justify their investment, by measuring its impact.

What does this means for the hospitality industry?

Unfortunately in many hotel operations, the crucial intersection where marketing and sales operations should meet is often missed and in some cases non-existent.

Here’s a jarring statistic for you. 70% of marketing content is never used by sales teams! Although this number isn’t specific to the hospitality industry, it’s safe to assume that it’s not far off when it comes to hotel operations. This represents a huge missed opportunity, because hotels that are able to differentiate themselves with the best digital content in their email sales communication increase their revenue by 13%.

Differentiation means telling, and showing, what makes your hotel’s experience unique with high quality, and consistent branded content. The need for differentiation has never been greater, with the emergence of a new generation of competitors (think Airbnb), many hotels are now focusing their sights on reaching the lucrative, yet highly competitive B2B (Meetings and Events, and Corporate) sectors.

Sales accelerations technologies provide sales teams with dynamic tools, which simplify sales communications and allows for a professional, consistent and desirable brand look and feel across all touch points. And with the real-time tracking tools available to users, they can see what prove most effective. This all has a huge impact on supplying sales teams with a tangible way to accelerate sales, especially in the B2B market.

As we said at the beginning, times have changed. There’s no industry or business function that isn’t already, or won’t soon be, feeling the disruptive forces that tech brings with it. The same goes for the hotel industry and their sales teams. The trick is to adapt to this new reality and thrive within it by employing the powerful technologies now available to them.

Based in London, UK, UpMail is an email tool for hotel sales people to increase one-to-one email communications productivity and sales conversion rates. UpMail customers includes Jurys Inn, Iberostar, citizenM, and many more.

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