Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Stoll

Martin Stoll

Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Sparkloft Media

Martin Stoll is the founder and CEO of Sparkloft Media, a social-first creative agency with offices in Portland (Oregon), Atlanta (GA), Washington (DC) and Miami (FL). With more than 30+ years of experience in the global travel industry, he has worked with clients in North and South America, Asia and Australia to create cutting-edge marketing programs by using data to better understand consumers. Under  Stoll's leadership, Sparkloft Media has worked with clients such as Marriott, Hilton, Kimpton, One&Only Resorts and Atlantis Paradise Island on projects in more than 20 countries around the world, winning numerous awards including several HSMAI Adrian Awards.

Sparkloft Media's perspective is that in today's world, social media is fundamentally impacting most aspects of our lives and should therefore be used as part of marketing, recruiting, B2B sales, market research, product development or design initiatives. Sparkloft supports its clients with social media strategy, content marketing, community management, trend reporting, social media co-ops, training and education, social commerce, integrated campaigns and influencer programs. 

Before founding Sparkloft Mr. Stoll worked for 15 years for Lufthansa German Airlines in sales and marketing in Europe, North and South America. A world explorer who has been to more than 70 countries, he spends the time that COVID-19 makes travel impossible cooking the national dish from each country (in alphabetical order) with his teenage kids. The last country they tackled was France: Coq au vin with Lyonnaise Potatoes and a coconut cake from French Polynesia as a dessert.

Please visit http://www.sparkloftmedia.com for more information.

Mr. Stoll can be contacted at +1 503-974-6103 or martin@sparkloftmedia.com

Coming up in September 2020...

Hotel Group Meetings: Demand vs. Supply

It is a great time for hotel group meetings. It is expected that once again this sector will grow by 5-10% in 2020, partly due to the increasing value of in-person group meetings. Because people now spend so much time in front of their screens, face-to-face interactions have become a more treasured commodity in our modern world. Plus, the use of social media reinforces the value of engagement, discussion, conversation, and networking - all areas where group meetings shine. Despite this rosy outlook, there is a concern that demand for meetings far exceeds the supply of suitable venues and hotels. There are very few "big box" properties with 500-plus rooms and extensive conference facilities being built, and this shortage of inventory could pose a serious challenge for meeting planners. In addition to location concerns, the role of the meeting planner has also evolved significantly. Planners are no longer just meeting coordinators - they are de facto travel agents. Cultural interactions, local dining, experiential travel, and team-building activities are all now a part of their meeting mix. Plus, they have to cater to evolving tastes. Millennials are insisting on healthier venues and activities, and to meet their demands, hotels are making yoga breaks, fresh-pressed juices, plant-based diets, state-of-the-art gyms, and locally-sourced menus available. Millennials are also insisting that meeting venues practice Corporate Social Responsibility, which means upholding sustainable and ethical values; investment in the local community; health and well-being of employees; and general business practices that reflect being good citizens of the planet. Finally, there is a growing trend to merge meetings with other local events, such as music festivals, sporting events, and cultural attractions. The December Hotel Business Review will report on issues relevant to group meetings and will document what some hotels are doing to support this part of their operations.