Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Ellison

Brett Ellison

General Manager, Kansas City Marriott, Country Club Plaza

Brett Ellison, General Manager of Kansas City Marriott Country Club Plaza, began his career with Marriott International as regional sales manager; moving quickly through multiple leadership roles including director of marketing. Throughout his 18-years as a general manager, Mr. Ellison gained much of his knowledge for the hospitality industry with major brands such as Marriott, Hyatt and Hilton hotels, working his way up to becoming an award-winning general manager in hospitality. Mr. Ellison graduated with honors from the University of South Dakota School of Business and has been recognized as a General Manager of the Year. The Kansas City Marriott Country Club Plaza is an award-winning full service hotel situated in the heart of Kansas City on Country Club Plaza, providing guests access to the best shopping, dining and entertainment the City has to offer. Having went through a design transformation, the Kansas City Marriott Country Club Plaza now features refreshed guest rooms, public areas and event spaces that invoke a contemporary feel reflective of the local community and maintain the Marriott brand appeal, traditions and values. Please visit http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/mcipl-kansas-city-marriott-country-club-plaza for more information.

Mr. Ellison can be contacted at 816-531-3000 or brett.ellison@marriottccplaza.com

Coming up in June 2018...

Sales & Marketing: Opinions Matter

Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors manage a complex mix of strategies to attract and convert customers into guests. Part of their expertise includes an awareness of customer behavior during the reservation process, so they can make sure their hotel is favorably positioned. One such trend is the growing popularity of travel review sites. According to one recent survey, 61% of prospective customers consult online reviews in order to validate information about the hotel before making a purchasing decision. Another survey found that the average hotel customer reads between 6-12 reviews across 4-10 properties before making a final decision on where to stay. Similarly, other studies have shown that consumer reviews are a more trusted source of information for prospective customers than other kinds of marketing messaging. In fact, reviews are often considered to be as influential as price regarding whether a customer decides to complete a purchase or not. Plus, travel sites with the most reviews - including recent reviews from satisfied customers and thoughtful responses from staff - were also found to be the most appealing. So having positive reviews on a travel website is essential and can help to increase a hotel's conversion rates dramatically. Of course, there are all kinds of additional marketing strategies for sales and marketing directors to consider - the importance of video and the emergence of live streaming; the implementation of voice search; the proliferation of travel bots; and the development of Instagram as an e-commerce platform. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.