Change. It is the only constant in this world, and yet it is also the argument for many to stay the same. Why change what is not broken, right?
Tim Davis, Head of Membership Services, recognizes that the world has always had a funny relationship to change.
“We see this regularly in the hotels we speak to. Before joining the alliance, most hotels understand that the industry has changed. Big hotel chains are getting bigger, and technology and loyalty programmes are giving them the advantage to overpower their smaller competitors online.
Collaboration is key to competing in size and scale, but collaboration can be daunting. We work with small and medium-sized hotel brands, that are independent because they have chosen to be this way. They love the autonomy and individuality and carrying on traditions that have, in many cases, been passed through their families for generations.
They know that they need to do something to compete but knowing which change to make can be hard.”
Capella Hotel Group shares what happens when joining the alliance
We have already discussed what it's like to be a member of Global Hotel Alliance. Joining the alliance allows small and medium-sized hotel brands to be part of a collective with the size, scale, loyalty and technology platforms to take on their mega-chain competition. Not to mention membership drives real revenue results.
Interestingly, when we speak to new hotel brands, lack of belief in the results is not the barrier to them making the change. It is usually a hesitation about the process of change itself; worry that it may be too time-consuming, resource-intensive or overwhelming to adopt.
To address this, we spoke to Andreas Kohn, VP Sales and Marketing at Capella Hotel Group, to share his team’s experience of signing up and becoming a member of the alliance.
From Sales to Operations
Relationships with new hotels begin with our Development team. When it comes to a new joiner, the handover from a sales-oriented Development team to the Operations team can be both an exciting and nerve-wracking experience for our new members.
“Understanding this, all departments across Global Hotel Alliance are intimately connected to ensure that handovers are seamless, and there is no break in communication. New members know all the next steps ahead of time and relationships with new departments are established immediately to make sure new members know who they can lean on at any given point in the process. Our handover from Global Hotel Alliance’s Development team from contract negotiations to the Operations and Integration team has been very smooth.”
“The benefit of joining the alliance is joining a network and adopting a technology and DISCOVERY loyalty programme. This requires some work on both sides to get everything up to speed. To keep this process moving smoothly, we set up weekly calls to discuss steps and ensure that we have all the support required to move comfortably through the adoption process.”
Global Hotel Alliance Embraces Your Brand
Perhaps the biggest barrier a new brand has is the fear that joining the alliance could somehow limit its independence or take away the uniqueness of its offering. At Global Hotel Alliance, nothing could be further from the truth, because each brand gets to retain control over operations and maintain full independence.
“Global Hotel Alliance has been successful over years because the DISCOVERY loyalty programme offers customers an opportunity to explore a selection of unique, independent hotels. This is something that mega-chains can never compete with. They embrace the uniqueness of all its members, encourage it, and promote it to DISCOVERY loyalty customers. What’s more, they’re here to help all hotel brands drive revenue results that align with the goals of their brand. We could feel the enthusiasm within Global Hotel Alliance to have Capella as a new member brand joining the alliance."
On-Site Training and System Setup
Adopting new systems requires an upskilling of staff and the appropriate professionals on-site to make sure systems are set up efficiently and effectively. To ensure that the system adoption runs smoothly, we deploy staff to set up the systems integration and on-site configurations, across multiple sites. While we're there, we run on-site training to bring all necessary staff up to speed on how to use the systems.
"On-site training through Membership Services was engaging and effective, and system integration and on-site configurations for multiple hotels were well prepared and managed by the Global Hotel Alliance vendor and Capella team."
Brand Specific Set-Up
Once our members have all their systems set up, our team works hard to ensure all of their brand-specific requirements are accommodated. This includes developing website content, direct mail promotions and customer enrollment forms that best represent their brand and its customers. This is precisely what we did for Capella Hotel Group.
"Global Hotel Alliance’s integration team had developed a good understanding of the Capella brand and our portfolio, as well as our brand-specific requirements. The team fully accommodated Capella's unique marketing requirements”
Delivering on and exceeding the expectations of our members is the ultimate goal for the entire Global Hotel Alliance team. Our alliance is strong thanks to the diversity of its members. It is our privilege to support them and assist each and every one in reaching new customers and achieving significant revenue growth.