Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Ratner

Dave Ratner

Motivational Speaker/CEO, Dave's Soda & Pet City

Dave Ratner has represented the voice of small business owners before both houses of Congress and continues to work to elevate the retail industry. Despite a myriad of top competitors, Mr. Ratner built a business with fanatical customer loyalty and employees who have been with him forever. He is known for creative and cost-effective marketing strategies that have allowed him to compete with large national chain stores and win. Mr. Ratner is also the author of Creating Customer Love: Make Your Customers Love You So Much They'll Never Go Anyplace Else! The book is a primer for entrepreneurs and executives, as well as hoteliers and other business leaders, with an interest in the positive emotional connection people have with certain brands. That relationship is at the center of the loyalty consumers have for select companies, and the gratitude those businesses have for these men and women. A frequent speaker before a variety of groups, and an active business traveler throughout the United States, Mr. Ratner addresses issues involving leadership, marketing and branding, innovation, as well as exceptional service and respect for consumers of diverse interests and backgrounds. For more than four decades, Mr. Ratner has been building an independent, critically and commercially acclaimed pet supply business. With seven Dave's Soda and Pet City stores, and a nationally marketed line of high-quality pet food for dogs and cats, Dave has earned a seat at the table on the National Retail Federation Board of Directors. A writer, speaker, entrepreneur and storyteller, Mr. Ratner resides with his family in Western Massachusetts.

Please visit www.daveratner.com/retail-marketing-speaker/ for more information.

Mr. Ratner can be contacted at 1-888-763-2738 or dave@davespetcity.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.