Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Fliess

Kevin Fliess

Vice President Supplier Network Product Marketing, Cvent

Kevin Fliess has spent the past two decades in leadership positions across B2B and B2C technology companies. He's led marketing, product management, and general management functions across a spectrum of ventures - from early stage start-ups, to growth companies, as well as established world-class brands. Mr. Fliess is currently VP of marketing at Cvent, where he leads product marketing, demand generation, and customer marketing for the Hospitality Cloud division. This includes Cvent's Group Marketing Solutions which span three online marketplaces that support a variety of meeting planners - the Cvent Supplier Network, EliteMeetings.com, and SpeedRFP.com - that expose hoteliers to hundreds of thousands of planners. Before joining Cvent, Mr. Fliess led worldwide product strategy for Hewlett Packard's $1B direct-to-customer / ecommerce channel - HP.com. Mr. Fliess also has extensive experience in the online travel industry. He was co-founder and CEO of TravelMuse, a social trip planning solution, which was acquired by Travora Media. He was also employee #1 at Room77.com, a leading meta-search site, where he led marketing, business development, and product management as GM. Earlier, Mr. Fliess was director of Product Management and later VP of Product Marketing for all Emerging Solutions at SAP (mobile, enterprise search and xApps). Mr. Fliess joined SAP by selling his first business, Venndia, a provider of collaborative workforce management software (similar to an early version of LinkedIn) to SAP. Mr. Fliess is co-inventor on 8 patents, all in internet and software technology. He also serves as an advisor to two early stage internet ventures and sits on the Cornell Hospitality School Research Advisory Board. Mr. Fliess holds a BA in Political Science and German from Washington and Lee University.

Mr. Fliess can be contacted at 866-318-4358 or kfliess@cvent.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.