Winning Group Business in the Age of Millennial Event Planners
By Kevin Fliess Vice President Supplier Network Product Marketing, Cvent | June 26, 2016
Hotels have spent the last decade trying to come to terms with a changing technology landscape that upended not only their sales and marketing strategies, but their operational processes, too. Now they face an even greater shift - one that will change their sales and marketing culture for years to come - the rise of the Millennial generation, and with that, the emergence of Millennial meeting and event planners.
In parallel with a rapid increase in Millennial leisure travelers, this new generation of young adults increasingly comprises the largest age group attending meetings and events, which are more often than not planned by a Millennial. The good news for hotels: many of the same marketing approaches and innovations for the leisure set carry over to group business, especially for this generation that blurs the lines between work and play more than any in the past.
Embracing technology, while difficult, is still a linear solution. You decide on the need, evaluate the standard options, and pick the best fit for your hotel. Fast Wi-Fi and lots of outlets are no-brainers. However, adapting to a generational shift involving the complexities of people is far more difficult.
This is the first generational shift we've witnessed in 25 years. While there were preferential differences between Baby Boomer and Generation X, they didn't fundamentally change the way hotels functioned to attract them. Millennials are different. Their technology-first inclinations, willingness to share everything online, and always connected lives are beginning to shift hoteliers' away from their comfort zone.
And this is only the beginning. Pew Research Center recently announced that "Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the nation's largest living generation."
What Defines Millennials?