Appointments & Promotions

Preferred Group Appoints Christie Weller DoGS Southern California and Southwestern United States

CHICAGO - February 24, 2012 - Preferred Hotel Group™, a leading provider of sales and marketing support to independent hotels around the world is pleased to announce the appointment of Christie Weller as director of group sales for Southern California and Southwest.

In her new role, Christie will serve as a liaison between Preferred Hotel Group members in her region and meeting and event planners. She will actively work with the company’s events team to host a variety of client events, and will implement personalized meetings between the members and planners.

With over 10 years of hotel experience, Christie joins Preferred Hotel Group after departing Leading Hotels of the World where she served as group sales manger in Southern California. For the five years prior, she held a dual sales position with two boutique properties in San Diego: Estancia La Jolla and L’Auberge Del Mar. Passionate about sales, Christie also has extensive experience in a variety of markets including incentive, food and beverage, and management consulting.

Christie earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel Administration from Cornell University and currently resides in San Diego, California.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Nichole DiBenedetto
Director, Global Public Relations
Tel: +1 646 465 9783
Fax: +1 212 541 7245
ndibenedetto@preferredhotelgroup.com

Coming Up In The February Online Hotel Business Review




Feature Focus
Social Media: Interacting with the Hotel Customer
Consider these astonishing numbers: 1.49 billion active monthly Facebook users. 1.1 billion active monthly YouTube users. 320 million active monthly Twitter users and nearly 400 million registered users on LinkedIn. 400 million active monthly Instagram users and 200 million active Google+ users. The power and reach of social media is an awesome force and it has transformed how hotels interact with their customers. In the past year, social media advertising spending increased 33.5% to nearly $24 billion dollars. Social networks are being utilized by hotels to reach more visitors, expand brand awareness, enhance brand reputation and to establish more direct and personal communication with their customers. Savvy hotel operators are adopting a comprehensive social media strategy, and there are several emerging trends to note. Video continues to be a powerful and influential element in social media marketing, with 70% of companies saying that it is their most effective marketing tool. Video generates a 62% higher engagement rate than photographs alone, and with new social sites like Meerkat and Periscope which offer live video streaming, those numbers will only increase. Sponsored content is another growing trend. Though advertorials have been around for decades, hotels are finding new ways to maximize the visibility of their content. Some are placing sponsored content on Facebook, or on influencer blogs. Another trend is the integration of a “Buy Now” button into social media websites. Customers will be able to make purchases without ever having to leave their favorite social sites. This development is a major convenience for customers and should also be an additional revenue source for hotels. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.