A Look at Green Legislation, Nearly One Year into the New Administration

By Jim Poad Director of Client Solutions, Advantage IQ | November 18, 2009

Obama’s election to the presidency came with the promise of sweeping policy change. A point of focus for the new administration was the climate; protecting it from the dangerous emissions that are released into the atmosphere at an alarming rate.

Now nearly one year into the President’s first term, the new administration has taken action that is considered long overdue by many. They have introduced legislation that will regulate the release of greenhouse gases (GHG). The US is the last industrialized, developed country to address regulating these gases and was only recently overtaken by China as the largest GHG emitter in the world.

These new environmental protection policies come in the form of the Climate Bill, which was passed by the House of Representatives on June 29, 2009. The legislation is designed to reduce the US carbon emissions by 17% (from 2005 levels) by 2020. It is believed that this bill will become law in the fall of 2009.

As the bill currently sits, there are three primary ways this legislation will impact businesses.

Power Prices/CO2e Emissions

Facilities that emit greater than 25,000 tonnes of carbon per year will be regulated. Primarily, these include electrical generators, refineries, chemical, metal, and cement plants. Those businesses below that mark will see the trickle down effect; higher energy costs resulting from the money those larger emitters must spend to clean up their production process.

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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.