Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Keisling

Kate Keisling

Senior Product Manager, IDeaS

Kate Keisling is a respected hospitality-technology product strategist and team builder experienced in training, support, project management, reporting analysis, product and partner management. She has advised CXOs at dozens of four- and five-star hospitality companies on best practices for implementing enterprise and property-level solutions.

Ms. Keisling joined IDeaS, a SAS company, in 2012, guiding the company and a key hospitality client through a business partnership to jointly develop a function space revenue management solution leading to a first-of-its-kind product offering. In her time with IDeaS, she has also designed and implemented a strategic filtering methodology to evaluate new product, partnership, and project opportunities.

Since 2016, Ms. Keisling has served as senior product manager for IDeaS SmartSpace, a cloud-based, standalone strategy tool that provides quick and easy access to critical meetings-and-events business data to help increase revenue from underutilized function space. Through demand analytics, performance measurement, and advanced sales models, SmartSpace enables users to execute demand-based group pricing and forecasting with greater accuracy and profitability.

Prior to joining IDeaS, Ms. Keisling was director of product strategy for Newmarket, an Amadeus company, where she was responsible for the development and execution of the product roadmap, which included CRM, SFA, and BI solutions. She also owned the early design of strategic projects, leading cross-functional teams pulling from all areas of the company to establish baseline specifications.

Ms. Keisling holds a Bachelor of Science degree in hotel administration from the University of New Hampshire's Whittemore School of Business and Economics and currently resides in the greater Boston area.

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

Linkedin Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kate-keisling/

Ms. Keisling can be contacted at +1 952-698-4281 or Kate.Keisling@ideas.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.