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Guidelines for Budget Planning
Why should you listen to my thoughts in this article? When it comes to finances, it's natural for us to write off advice we see as biased - so I'll clarify my position at the outset. (Especially if you're a new reader here.) I work with a number of hotels in North America, South America and Europe in various advisory roles. Whether sitting on their board or as a more informal member of the executive team, my job is helping managers such as yourself understand new technology and how to make the best use of the resources they have.
If I was limited to just one piece of advice, it would be: Invest in people, not technology.
The rapid rate of new technology evolution necessitates you invest in people who can understand the changes and apply them to your situation. I'd rather have a team of all-stars to select and use free technology than the best tools in the world and just a mediocre team to operate them. It's important to remember that good employees are always free: they earn your company more money than you pay them in salary.
I'd begin with hiring an impartial, outside advisor. It's important to have someone on your team who understands the technology, but has no financial interest in the outcome.
Next, I'd be sure to have an internal champion that can work with this advisor on implementation. (My experience has taught me this external/internal relationship works better than having everything done by an agency or everything done in-house.) When selecting a marketing ambassador, I look for someone with integrity that I can trust with making decisions without constantly checking in. Someone with strong project management skills to work with various members of your team to turn ideas into actions.
Once you get the right people on the bus, it's important to select the right mix of marketing technologies that fit your situation and will help you reach your goals. Just because a new tactic or social network is getting a lot of attention doesn't mean it will be a good fit for you.
Below is a quick overview of some major digital communications channels, and what you can expect from each. To keep things very practical, I've included major benefits and also the estimated costs for a mid-sized hotel property (in the US dollars).
Deciding on the right marketing mix can be overwhelming, and I'd like to help you. If you give me some background information here, I'll do a quick situation analysis, and then provide you with a complimentary 15-minute telephone consultation to identify opportunities and share a few ways you could implement them.
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