[photopress:William_Hall.jpg,full,alignright]For the first time in China, the popular Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) Asia Pacific conference series, ‘Asia Connect’ was held in Shanghai.
In late June, delegates including General Managers, Directors of Marketing and Sales and Human Resource directors from leading hotels in Shanghai gathered to address several challenging issues such as ‘Managing Well in the Face of HR and Other Employee Issues’, ‘Keeping Your Balance in an Over Supply Market’ and ‘Destination Branding’.
The content for the conference was derived from a HSMAI Asia Pacific-IBHS industry survey, ‘What Keeps You Up at Nights?’ which in May 2007 polled opinion from Shanghai’s hoteliers.
Ignoring, for the moment, the possibility of some very rude replies, some key findings from the survey were presented at the conference by William Hall GM, Hotel Equatorial Shanghai and Chairman of IBHS who is shown in our illustration.
William Hall said, ‘The purpose of this survey was to gain a better understanding of what the key concerns are for hospitality professionals in Shanghai. From the survey responses, three common themes were apparent:
The ‘changing competitive landscape’ due to Shanghai’s huge increase in new room supply for 2006- 2009;
The need for a ‘creative destination marketing campaign’ to generate new demand and repeat visits to our city.”
(Apparently in the hotel industry ‘manpower’ is not yet seen as a sexually biased term. It will happen. Soon. Human resources will become the accepted phrase.)
Robert A. Gilbert, CHME, CHA, the President and CEO of HSMAI, when delivering his keynote speech said current research seems to indicate that Shanghai is losing tourism arrivals within China and to other destination markets such as Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mumbai.
Gilbert envisages a buyers market is looming for Shanghai. He offered delegates ten ways to prepare for it, including:
Build the best team in the market;
Perfect your strategic planning process;
Plan by marketing segment;
Be a leader;
Everybody Sell — Sales & Marketing is a Discipline, not a Department.
Source: Asia Travel Tips