Providing a designated wedding and event planner for your small or independent hotel is not quite as simple as pointing at a member of your existing staff and announcing, “You’re it.” If you’re serious about increasing the number of wedding, business meeting, and private event requests for proposal (RFP) coming across your desk, you need someone with a specific skill set – including hotel internet marketing savvy.
Here are a few qualities to look for in a good event planner for your hotel:
- Training and Certification
It doesn’t take a bachelor’s degree to become a wedding and event planner, but the possession of at least one certification indicates someone who is dedicated to attaining and maintaining high standards. Look for someone who has completed an apprenticeship program, online program, or college-based certification.
- Professional Membership
Membership in a professional organization is always a plus. Look for membership in Meeting Professionals International (MPI), International Special Events Society (ISEC), or the Convention Industry Council (CIC).
- Industry Knowledge
A good weddings and event planner should know where the brides are – online! A well-placed hotel PPC (pay-per-click) ad on just a few of the most popular bridal web sites will not only boost your visibility to your target audience; it will boost your rankings in internet search engine results. It’ll be some of the best advertising dollars you’ll ever spend.
- Organizational Skills
Someone who is detail oriented – and the ability to lay hands on the right detail at the right time – is essential. A thorough knowledge of spreadsheet programs and filing systems, not to mention commonly used hotel systems, is a must in order to produce the exact event the customer is paying for. It is critical that a planner know how to coordinate perhaps dozens of different vendors to bring the event off on time and within budget.
- Business Savvy
Clients want good value for the money their spending, even if they’re throwing a lavish wedding celebration. A planner with the business skills to negotiate prices will increase your profit margin and give you the flexibility to bid competitively for lucrative events.
- Creative Genius
Creativity doesn’t just mean taking a bride’s ideas and making them reality. It’s taking those ideas to the next level… and having a backup plan when things inevitably go wrong. Like a DJ that doesn’t show, a cake that falls, or table decorations that are nothing like what was ordered.
- Customer-First Attitude
“Never let ‘em see you sweat,” is a top-notch planner’s mantra. A client must feel that she can pick up a phone or send an email, and have her concerns addressed in a calm, professional manner.
When interviewing candidates to take the reins of your wedding and event business, ask yourself, “Would I want this person planning the most important event of my life?” Your answer will help you choose the right planner.
Whether it’s through hotel internet marketing or PPC, let us show you ways to say “I do” to more wedding events at your hotel. Contact us today!