After the doom and gloom of the pandemic, it seems that the much-vaunted green shoots of recovery are beginning to appear.
Major venues are beginning to see a phenomenal increase in enquiries. On a wider scale looking forward, the global MICE industry is expected to be worth $1,337.4 billion by 2028 with the UK being one of the leaders.
Let’s explore how technology can help streamline your operation while optimising sales performance to create a viable and future-proofed business.
What technology can do for you
In an increasingly more technically sophisticated and dynamic world, in order to succeed you need more than a solution for conference room booking.
Increasingly, customer RFPs are based on ever shorter lead times and with so many choices for bookers, including hybrid events, venues need to be efficient in terms of both customer responsiveness and creating a memorable event to make themselves heard.
Technology can help in number of ways:
Improved enquiry handling
Clients are always going to be impressed with venues who take the trouble to get back to them promptly and when they say they will.
Venue management software solutions have evolved to include features for enquiry handling that ensure that all sales-related tasks are diarised, all client event details are in one place and that converting an enquiry to a confirmed diary booking is a simple push-button process.
Further integrations such as with e-signature solutions makes the whole process of closing business a paperless and efficient process.
Sales and marketing on steroids
Of course, not all enquiries convert to business straight away so you need to have a system in place to make sure that you keep your prospects engaged until they are ready to make a firm decision.
We recommend integrating the venue management software with a CRM solution such as Microsoft Dynamics. Creating automated and eye-catching email campaigns to leads can achieved in a matter of moments.
Thanks to advanced reporting, sales teams are automatically notified of their most engaged prospects so they can focus their time on filling their sales pipeline.
Maximised online opportunities
Integration with your website saves time both for you and your staff. Far more than a simple enquiry form, the integration enables bookers to make a conference room booking and pay for it in one simple and secure transaction.
Further integrations with major directory sites such as Venue Directory, ensure that your venue is being promoted and, more importantly, transactable with as wide an audience as possible.
All booking data is entered straight into the booking system saving your staff valuable data entry time while ensuring you make money 24/7.
New revenue streams
Thinking outside the box after the pandemic, some venues are offering indviduals and teams the opportunity to rent space for hybrid working. This can often represent a happy medium between home and the office.
Positioning your venue as a third space can help to generate some much needed revenue and demonstrates that you are in step with this exciting new hybrid working development.
Check out this video to get an idea of how technology can empower hybrid working.
Once you have made the sale, you want to make the event – whether it is a simple conference room booking or a lavish wedding – a great success.
A venue management software solution takes care of all the event planning for you – producing detailed and timely function sheets. Important timings, such as set up and breakdown, are factored in so everything runs like clockwork.
For added efficiency, outstanding tasks are displayed onscreen when users log in so every detail relating to an events is effectively managed and nothing is ever forgotten.
With the technology taking care of the day to day tasks, staff can focus their time on creating a great guest experience.
Improved cash flow
As the venue management software captures all the billable aspects of the event with pinpoint accuracy, such as catering and AV, producing an accurate invoice post-event is a simple process.
Producing a final invoice only one part of the equation. Progressive software vendors offer other features to help the accounts team operate at optimum efficiency such as aged debtor reporting, deposit handling and credit notes.
Look to the future
As we have alluded to – today’s solutions are more than a mechanism for conference room booking. They hold a wealth of management information that you can use to drive your business forward.
Presented in attractive and actionable graphical dashboards you can see at a glance:
- Room usage and occupancy
- Sales pipeline
- Expected revenue
- Effectiveness of sales and marketing campaigns
- Top ten clients by revenue
And much more.
For added efficiency, reports can be scheduled and emailed to the necessary management recipients on a weekly or monthly basis – set it and forget it.
With so much choice for bookers, having the right technology tools for responding faster to enquiries creates competitive advantage as well as ensuring that you maximise the return on every penny invested in sales and marketing.
Being able to transact fully online ensures that smaller events, such as conference room bookings, can be sold 24/7 while integration with the directory sites opens another lucrative revenue stream.
The technology also ensures that staff are focussing their time on delivering great service and when it comes to billing the accounts team can send invoices in total confidence that every last item is accounted for – even if the client made last minute changes during the event.
Having a suite of comprehensive reports and management information ensures that you can continuously improve your operation – in 2021 or beyond.
Don’t just take our word for it – watch the Union Club customer success video to discover how they have streamlined their operation, embedded all their operational and sales processes into the system and, in their words, made it the backbone of the operation.