Coronavirus Meeting Planner Update

 

Coronavirus Hotel Contracts

On Friday, March 27th, HPN Global CEO Bill Kilburg sat down with Regional VP Mark Dallman on Facebook LIVE to talk about the current state of the industry and have a conversation about Coronavirus and how it’s impacting hotel contracts.



Sourcing Tip Of The Month: February

Can you believe it is February already?  With the year off to a fast start, here’s a quick update from our Rock Star sourcing team!

RFP System Refresher:
Sourcing Terms and Conditions Review
Our platform requires all hotels to accept our terms and conditions before they can bid. Hotels are not able to update the T&C in the response link on their own – this is completed by the sourcing team.

We recommend that hotel partners reach out to the sourcing team member handling their RFP and tell us what changes need to be made in order to make the terms agreeable. If their request is in line with HPN’s standards, the sourcing team will update the hotel’s link with the requested changes. Then the hotel will review and submit their bid.

The sourcing team will also monitor the availability report to see if hotel partners leave any notes about commission. We use those notes to update T&Cs before we reach out to the associate to let them know the RFP is complete.

When terms and conditions have been altered, a booklet icon will appear in the T&C column of your availability report. We encourage associates to review T&C updates to ensure everything is in order before sending out the AVR to a client.

Sourcing Trend:
The team averaged 46 RFPs/day and sent out over 1,000 RFPs/revisions and expansion in January! The team is staying busy!  We appreciate our hotel partners who respond quickly and thoroughly to our requests.  A quarter of the new leads were short term (under 90 days).

Promotion Alert!
While we are on the topic of T&C and commission – HPN Global provides our associates with an easy place to view hotels/CVBs that are offering additional commission! We have a lot of great partners out there who know that relationships matter!  If you are a hotel and would like to submit a special incentive to attract more attention from our sales team, please contact us and we will add to our list.

As always, please reach out with any questions at all, and have a wonderful week!

WHITNEY BEGIN

Senior Sourcing Operations Specialist

O: 480.998.9770 x 259

E: wbegin@hpnglobal.com

Sourcing Tip of the Month: January

HPN Global developed its own sourcing platform based upon efficiency and, just as importantly, to foster relationships between hotels and clients. The company’s philosophy is to have a single point of contact at each hotel so a long-term relationship can be formed, resulting in priority handling of our inquiries. This also allows us to maximize our purchasing leverage and partnerships at the property level. The ease of the system response form allows hotels to submit their bids efficiently. Every group hotel in North America and most globally are preloaded into our system so hoteliers can respond to the RFP in literally less than 10 minutes. The quick follow up process conducted by the Senior Sourcing Specialist ensures responses are submitted in an appropriate amount of time.  Typically, in North America the company’s RFPs have a response rate of 85% within 24 hours and virtually 100% within 48 hours.

Here is a quick HPN Global RFP System Refresher:

The Sourcing team sourced 10k+ RFPs in 2019 and we are looking to grow that this year! We are also starting Q1 off with a bang averaging 45 RFPs a day and rising. So, if you are planning a meeting please contact us first. 😊

Sourcing Trend:

Also, it has been noted at the MPI Luncheon by Amanda Armstrong, AVP of Enterprise Holdings, that there is a huge rise in demand for meetings, but the development pipeline is slowing down. Thus, planners should be adjusting budgets to anticipate higher rates and start booking space/blocks earlier. Just something for our clients and associates to keep in mind moving forward.

This is yet another reason why our sourcing model is so perfect. We can help our clients source more locations and find those perfect holes in any market. We believe that although demand is high and space is limited, if we use our technology the right way, we can find a great spot for any client meeting or event.

Meeting Promotions and Offers Alert!

Our partners are offering some great deals to start 2020 off right! All of which are posted on our HPN portal so that our associates can always make sure our clients are getting the very best meeting offers available for your event dates and requirements. Make sure you contact the HPN Global associate in your area or in the area you are planning to meet to get all the information you need before you engage the property directly.

Senior Sourcing Specialist, Laura Hess

Hotel Sales Tip of the Month: January

HotelSales tip: don’t take my email address and add it to your weekly/monthly promotions email blast list without my permission. It’s unoriginal and doing so signals you don’t respect my time and you don’t have a genuine interest in my business or value my clients’ programs outside of making a transaction.

Instead, find out something about me or my clients and send a thoughtful email after you read an article on that subject (hint: I love baseball). Pick up the phone and tell me anything other than how your ballroom was “recently renovated” and has “flexible meeting space.” Invite me for a “virtual coffee” appointment on Skype to talk about life. Be original and as somebody I respect (David Meltzer) always says, “be more interested than interesting” and you will be exponentially more successful in your sales efforts.

(Edit: To meeting buyers like myself, it’s our responsibility to lower the wall when somebody gets creative and reaches out. If someone makes an effort to really reach you, take the call. Chances are they found you because you buy in their market and if you buy again you have a partner you can contact first who will work to earn your business.)

Agree? Disagree? Comment below👇

Global Account Director, Tony Farina

Five DMC Common Misconceptions

According to our partner Shannon Gardner, President and Owner of Accent Indy and CTC Destination Management, there are a few common misconceptions about working with a DMC that we would like to clear up.

DMC MISCONCEPTION NO. 1: DMCS CHARGE CRAZY FEES
Just like the majority of our clients and the businesses they represent, we need to make money to keep our doors open. I’m not afraid to say it: we are a for-profit company. You’re not just paying us for the food and beverage; you’re paying for the “higher than the law requires me to carry insurance, so in the event something awful happens, I’ve got great coverage.” You’re not just paying me to sign off on all the vendor contracts. You’re paying me to attend seminars and network with industry colleagues to learn about contract language, so I won’t sign off on something that gets us both into trouble. You are not just paying me to figure out where the bar goes. You’re paying me for working with the best technical platforms, so I can put our vision on paper for you to present to your stakeholders.

DMC MISCONCEPTION NO. 2: WE’LL USE YOUR BUDGET TO OUR ADVANTAGE
Some clients are reluctant to share their true budgets, for fear we will just use that number as an end price. In reality, we will fight to use every dollar of that budget to help make the event the best that it can be — oftentimes, providing a little more on our dime –. just so we can complete the vision. We want the event to be just as successful and impactful as the client. If nothing else, we want a picture-perfect photo for our Instagram page.

DMC MISCONCEPTION NO. 3: IT WILL BE EASIER TO GO DIRECT
“I can always go search the internet on my own”, has been known to be uttered from time to time. Well, if I relied on WebMD to make all my diagnoses, I’d have died from a terminal illness about five times already! We search the web to get general info. We go see a doctor to get professional help. Why not do the same for your most important events?

DMC MISCONCEPTION NO. 4: WHAT EVEN IS A DMC’S PRODUCT?
Our product is our knowledge. We know the best vendors with which to hire and we know the ones to avoid. Our product is our experience. I love to tell clients, I’ve been working for you, long before you even knew who I was. The events and programs we’ve been producing and managing for the last 25 years have allowed us to repeat things when they go well, and learn from mistakes to avoid future pitfalls. Our product is a peace of mind. Clients need to focus on so many other aspects of their job and not worry about Plan B. We plan for things to go wrong and we have solutions if things don’t go as planned.

DMC MISCONCEPTION NO. 5: DMCS ARE NOT FOR EVERYONE
Well actually, this one is true. You need to trust your DMC or the relationship will be doomed from the beginning. Some clients prefer to do things on their own. Sometimes it’s genuinely a budget thing. My response to that is, too often, you’re not saving money, you’re buying regret. But I do understand that every company operates differently — a DMC may simply not be for you. Maybe you’re just not that into me! But if the idea of saving time and hassle intrigues you, why not give us a go? We’re there for you when you are ready.

For questions, please email Diva Tolosa, Manger of DMC and Preferred Partners at dmc@hpnglobal.com

Know Before You Go To HPN19

Get Ready for Our Annual Partner Conference!

We’re so excited to see you all in Seattle for a great week of networking, getting business done and of course, fun! For full agenda and details, visit the HPN19 website.

Conference Mobile App
The #HPN19 app is available for download and contains all the information you need to know about this year’s event!

Text hpnglobal to 41411 for information to download and access the mobile event app!

Daily Emails
We’ll be sending out daily emails that cover all the exciting things that #HPN19 has to offer… Stay tuned!

Text Chatbot
In additional to the daily emails HPN will send each morning to prep you for all the exciting events of the day, we’re also partnering with EventBots, by 42Chat, to bring you a brand new chatbot experience for #HPN19! We’ll share information on how to interact with “HPNster” throughout the week!

Safety & Security
HPN Global has partnered with Emergency Concierge International (ECI) to provide comprehensive safety, security and medical services dedicated specifically to the attendees of our 2019 Conference.

In the HPN19 app you will find valuable emergency information under the “Emergency Info” tab.

If you have any safety, security or medical concerns/issues please don’t hesitate to contact ECI at 480-712-5027. They are here to help!

How to Prepare for #HPN19

Weather / Attire
Dress Code: HPN Casual – Jeans welcome!

High temperatures range between 63° to 66°, with a few days of forecasted clouds and possibly rain. Keep in mind it will cool down quite a bit at night. We recommend dressing in layers, especially for indoor/outdoor activities. Don’t forget an umbrella!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Club HPN will be at Museum of Pop Culture (MoPop) – Come dressed as your favorite pop icon!

#HPNGivingBack

Together with BWH Hotel Group, we’re partnering with Mary’s Place to help make a difference in the Seattle community.

In 2018, Mary’s Place helped 650 families move into stable housing, provided 180k overnight stays, 360k meals, served over 1,300 children, helped 1,500 people with employment services, and provided meals, showers, dry clothing, hygiene items, and resources to 100+ women and families per day.

With over a 95% success rate, Mary’s Place is truly making a difference in the community and we’re excited to do our part!

In addition to monetary donations onsite, we’re also accepting the following:
• Beanies, Gloves, Rain Ponchos, Socks
• $5 Gift Cards to: Starbucks, Subway, McDonalds, CVS, Target

Transportation from Airport to Hyatt Regency Seattle
Please note, HPN Global does not provide transportation to/from the airport. You will need to arrange transportation on your own. Here are a few options to consider:

UberX/UberPool – Will pick up from the 3rd floor of the parking garage with numbered stalls
Uber Select – Will pick up curbside

NOTE: Hyatt Regency Lake Washington appears 1st on when selecting your destination, so be sure you’re selecting Hyatt Regency Seattle!

The Link Light Rail picks up from the 4th floor of the airport parking garage and will get you to Hyatt Regency Seattle for only $2.75! You’ll get off at the Westlake Station and walk 5 minutes to the hotel. Plan your trip.

NOTE: If you are comfortable taking public transportation, this may be a faster option during peak, rush hour times – traffic can get heavy in downtown Seattle.

Share your photos with us on social and tag #HPN19

We’re here to help! If you have any questions, please email us at reg@hpnglobal.com.

See you in Seattle!

Jil Dasher’s 10 Most Asked Questions To Conquer Site Visits

According to Jil Dasher, SVP & Managing Director, Meeting Services, the following are great questions to ask during a site visit. Although HPN is known best for site selection and contract negotiations, did you know our team also assists in hotel site inspections and offers Full-Service Meeting & Event management, too? HPN is a one-stop solution for all your event planning needs.

1) Does the hotel or event site have a preferred or exclusive vendor list?

If the venue answers yes to this question, it can be good, or it can be a challenge. If you are new to the area and aren’t working with a Destination Management Company (DMC), having a prepared list of vetted vendors can make your job significantly easier. On the flip side, the limitations of that venue mean you might not be able to use outside vendors that you have partnered with before. In addition, if they do have preferred vendors, find out if you can have direct contact with them or if all communication will go through the site. Not having direct contact can slow down decisions.

HPN has a fully vetted list of preferred partners around the globe that we source on your behalf, so you have competitive bids in hand when you are on your site visit and contracting the hotel or venue. With HPN handling the vetting and RFP process, you know you are in good hands no matter who you choose to work with. If there are ever any issues, HPN can assist in mitigating them for you.

2) Are there any time restrictions for outdoor events?

Most venues have limits on amplified sound after a certain time of the night. For example, some venues might allow it until midnight while others end at 10 p.m. If you plan on having a deejay or band perform for a late-night event, knowing this up front is crucial. There are also event spaces, like museums and observatories, that only allow alcohol to be served for a certain amount of time or in certain areas of the venue. Knowing this valuable information upfront helps you plan your event within the available venue parameters while determining what is best based on the specific needs and expectations of the event you are hosting.

3) What else is going on during my event?

There are all kind of factors that can affect your event, from a concurrent event held at the venue to major road construction or citywide festivals. Each of these will need to be planned around, whether its finding alternate routes, putting up draping to hide construction work or hanging extra signage to ensure your guests make it to the correct event. Asking at the time of the site and contracting will save major headaches and confusion at your event!

4) What emergency preparedness plans are in place?

Your staff and attendees should have confidence that there is an emergency plan in place and what to do in the case of an on-site emergency. At the very least, your meeting team should know where the first aid kit and AED are located (preferably at the Registration Desk and easily accessible). Additionally, the entire planning team should be on the same page with the hotel or venue staff about how to handle everything including a power outage, fire alarm, medical emergency or on-site evacuation to assure that everything runs smoothly in the face of something unexpected.

5) What are the site’s security guidelines?

You’ll want to know the credentials of the on-site security, whether they’re in-house staff, off-duty cops or a third party hired for the event, and what specifically are they responsible for. That information will allow you to make decisions about extra security to make sure unwanted guests don’t wander into your event, which is something in-house security is often not responsible for. Here is a great article on the subject: https://hpnglobal.com/event-planning-risk-management/

6) What is the accessibility of the venue?

For starters, you will need to know if the venue is ADA compliant, especially if it is an open event to outside guests. You’ll also need to know about parking and whether there will be space for pick up and drop off. Both you and your guests are going to need this information to plan how they will get to the event. You’ll also want to know if there is a loading zone nearby, how many freight elevators does the site have and how big are they. The answers to these questions are key for figuring out how long it will take to load in decor and furniture.

7) What is the best staff-to-event ratio?

This question is good for both site visits and your on-site planning team. When talking with a DMC or a full-service partner like HPN Meeting Services, you will want to know that your dedicated Operations Manager is not working on too many programs at a time – otherwise, you may not be getting the full support you need, especially when it comes to last-minute changes or emergencies. When dealing with hotels and venues, asking how many servers, bussers, bartenders, and barbacks will be working your event ahead of time will help ensure that your event has the support it needs to run smoothly from start to finish.

8) How many power sources are there? Where are they located and what is their output?

This is such an easy question to overlook but it’s pretty important. For general sessions and conferences, people are going to need to plug in their phones, laptops, and tablets so you are going to need either a lot of power sources or one that has enough output to handle multiple devices. Thinking about power is even more important when you are planning an outdoor event. You can lose a substantial amount of the budget to generators and extra power charges, so it’s crucial to know immediately if the site can handle your electricity needs.

9) How many bathrooms are available?

This is another easily overlooked question that can make or break an event. If the event space has limited bathrooms, you’ll want to accommodate with extra time between sessions. If you know you will have significant disparity between male and female guests, you might need to requisition a bathroom for whichever needs more. Asking about the availability of ADA, family and gender-inclusive bathrooms or dedicated nursing rooms on-site is critical to covering all attendees needs, especially for open events or ones where you do not have the full demographic information about your attendees.

10) How does the site prefer to communicate?

You’ll be working closely with the hotel or venue leading up to and during your event, so you want communication to be as simple, streamlined and efficient as possible. That can be as easy as asking if they prefer information sent over in an Excel sheet rather than a Word document, or texting instead of calling during certain hours of the day. Simply asking how your hotel, venue or manager operates most efficiently is key so you can make sure you’re in tune with one other.

If you have any additional questions, please contact Jil Dasher directly; she would love to help!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phone: 319-331-5304
Email: jdasher@hpnglobal.com

Event Wifi Services

An item that continues to come up when we are working on groups is wifi needs. How much bandwidth is enough and how much-dedicated megs do you guarantee under concessions. I am passing on some great resources to figure out the answer to these questions.

In order for us to help our clients, it is very important for us to identify the following information:

  • How many attendees will be in the meeting space?
  • Will they have multiple devices?
  • Is there a live streaming requirement?
  • Will you be downloading/uploading data for presentations?
  • Are they using a mobile meeting app?

 Once we have this information you can use the PSAV bandwidth calculator to figure out how many megabits of bandwidth is needed for the group. If it is a large group with a lot of attendees you will want to get dedicated wifi that is exclusive for your group. We typically negotiate the bandwidth complimentary as a concession our larger groups and always include the megabyte number.

For more information, please click here.

If you have any questions about wifi or anything else, just give me a call. 

Steven J. Scatino
Partner/Executive Vice President, Sales
HPN Global, LLC
13825 N Northsight Blvd Suite 201,Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Office: 480-998-9770 Ext. 225
Cell: 602-418-4127
Fax: 480-718-8136
Email: sscatino@hpnglobal.com

Sourcing Tip of the Month: May

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Here is a recap of our sourcing tip of the month – provided on our monthly conference call to all of our associates.

Sourcing Trend:

Puerto Rico is rebounding and ready for business! Receiving a record number of visitors as they continue to rebuild. New hotels are opening, hotels damaged are renovating and scheduled to reopen in the coming months, and travel to the island is at an all-time high.

Promotion Alert! 

HPN Global clients receive a Strategic Partner offer for Aruba!

Considering booking your event for any time between May and December 2020, and receive exclusive HPN Global concessions.  Contact us for participating hotels (each offering their own additional concessions).

Enter to win a CLEAR Membership

HPN Global and CLEAR want to put you at the front of the line. 

Whether you plan to join us in Seattle for #HPN19 or not, here is your opportunity to win a year of free Clear! HPN Global and CLEAR want to put you at the front of the line. Being an industry leading organization, we know what it’s like to be at the front of the line – and we want to take you with us. 

Enter here http://bit.ly/FREECLEAR to win a CLEAR membership on us. Winners will be announced on Tuesday, August 13th.  

Laura Hess

Senior Sourcing Specialist 

Lhess@hpnglobal.com

Click Here to get started

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Sourcing Tip of the Month: April

Sourcing Trend: Top Sourced Cities for Q1 were:

  1. San Diego
  2. Orlando
  3. Chicago
  4. Phoenix / Scottsdale
  5. Dallas

Total RFPs sourced are up 12% from last year’s Q1!

Date flexibility continues to be key. If you can look at a flexible pattern within the week and/or the weeks prior or after, this may help open availability and provide more options. Even if you want to select one set of dates, we suggest allowing for hotels to offer alternate dates, just to see what comes back. This is a huge timesaver on short term leads, which we have seen a big increase this year!

Talk to your HPN Global Associate about this and we will be happy to help guide you!


Courtney Tate:
Senior Sourcing Specialist
ctate@hpnglobal.com


Click Here to get started