Unlocking the Power of CRMs for Group Sales

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Not only has buyer behavior changed in the past five years, it is evolving at lightning speed.

B2B buyers now expect personalized experiences tailored to their specific needs and challenges.

Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report notes that 72% of business buyers expect communications from businesses that are tailored to their needs and expectations.

How will your sales team keep up?

We need a game-changer.

Thankfully, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology has stepped up to the plate.

Don’t get left in the dust.

In this post, we will explore the importance of personalized and content-driven marketing strategies to meet the modern buyer’s needs and offer actionable tips to help you navigate the dynamic nature of B2B buying behavior using CRM technology.

Are you ready to get strategic with CRM technology? Let’s dive in.

CRMs for Hotel Sales: Not Just a Buzzword, Your New Marketing Assistant

What is a CRM?

A CRM, or Customer Relationship Management system, is your ultimate tool for winning in business.

It’s where all your customer info is stored, from interaction histories to preferences, making your marketing sharper and sales stronger.

There are a lot of sales and marketing platforms that have a CRM feature, but if you actually utilize a CRM and the sales and marketing platform portion of it, it is such a powerful tool. 

Think of it as your secret weapon for personalizing experiences, boosting sales, and keeping customers returning for more.

The Big Shift: From Sales to Marketing Dominance

According to Hubspot’s 2024 Sales Trend Report, a whopping 96% of the sales process now happens on the marketing side.

Oftentimes, hotel salespeople contact their existing clients or customers only when they need something, not when their prospects and customers need something.

That misalignment.

It’s time for sales pros to evolve by combining sales and marketing efforts.

The blend of sales and marketing, powered by CRM systems, has transformed how other industries connect with customers.

Here’s how the hospitality industry can keep up:

Data-Driven Selling

CRM platforms have made sales strategies more sophisticated, using data analytics to tailor sales approaches. High-performing sales teams leveraging CRM insights achieve better forecasting accuracy and customer understanding.

Personalization at Scale

AI and machine learning within CRMs enable sales to automate personalized communication, a tactic borrowed from marketing that significantly boosts engagement and conversions.

Content for Sales Enablement

Sales teams now utilize marketing-generated content to support the sales process, sharing relevant materials with prospects through CRM systems to enhance the buyer’s journey.

Social Selling

By integrating social media tools into CRM systems, sales professionals can engage with prospects on their preferred platforms, mirroring marketing’s approach to building a brand presence online.

Lead Scoring and Nurturing

CRM systems facilitate lead scoring and nurturing, enabling sales to focus on the most promising prospects and keep others engaged, blending sales efforts with marketing tactics for pipeline management.

Analytics and Reporting

CRM systems’ advanced analytics and reporting features offer real-time insights into the effectiveness of sales and marketing strategies, allowing for agile adjustments and clearer ROI demonstration.

It’s no longer about simply capturing leads; it’s about nurturing them through every step of their journey with personalized, engaging content.

Your CRM should work overtime to make this happen, even while you sleep.

Making CRM Technology Work for You: Automation, Personalization, and Engagement

Now, let’s discuss putting your CRM to work.

Automation is your friend, but only if you use it wisely.

Here are some practical ways hotel sales teams can use a CRM to boost their strategies and keep ahead of the competition.

Segmentation: Know Your Audience

  • For Possible Opportunities: Identify anyone who might book your event space in the future. Use the CRM to keep your hotel top of mind through regular, value-packed communications.
  • For Definites: Implement a series of thank-you emails. Show appreciation for their business and hint at future opportunities to enhance loyalty.
  • For Site Visits, Develop a nurturing email series to convert their interest into a sale. Highlight your space’s unique selling points or offer a limited-time promotion.
  • For Client Turn-Downs: Send a gracious thank-you message for considering your venue and include them in your monthly touchpoints. This keeps your hotel in their thoughts for future events.
  • For Hotel Turn-Downs: Keep these contacts in your database and continue to engage with them through scheduled touchpoints, ensuring your venue remains an option for them.

Life of the Lead: Prioritize for Precision

  • Track Lead Engagement: “Life of the Lead” allows you to see every interaction a lead has with your marketing efforts. This includes email opens, clicks, website visits, social media interactions, and more. By tracking these activities, you can get a clearer picture of what interests your leads and what prompts them to take action.
  • Identify Effective Tactics: By examining the history of interactions for each lead, you can identify which marketing tactics and messages are most effective. For instance, you might notice that certain types of emails or specific content topics drive more engagement or conversions.
  • Personalize Marketing Efforts: Understanding the unique journey of each lead helps in tailoring marketing messages and campaigns. If a lead has shown interest in a particular product or topic, you can customize future communications to align with those interests.
  • Improve Lead Scoring: “Life of the Lead” can contribute to a more accurate lead scoring system by providing detailed data on a lead’s engagement level. This helps prioritize leads who are more engaged and likely closer to making a purchase decision.
  • Enhance Sales Collaboration: Sales teams can use the insights from “Life of the Lead” to better understand a lead’s needs and pain points before reaching out. This prepares them for more informed and effective sales conversations.
  • Analyze Lead Sources: You can use this feature to analyze which marketing channels are bringing in the most engaged leads. Understanding which channels are most effective can help you optimize your marketing budget and strategies.
  • Monitor Campaign Performance: Assess the impact of specific campaigns by tracking how leads interact with each campaign. This can help you refine your strategies in real-time and make adjustments to improve campaign effectiveness.

Warm Nurturing: Build Relationships

  • Use thank you page welcome videos to introduce your team and venue, adding a personal touch that can make all the difference.
  • Lead magnets can be a game-changer. Offer valuable resources in exchange for their contact information, then use automated follow-ups to guide them down the sales funnel.

Custom Triggers: Engage with Precision

  • Set up custom triggers based on the specific pages visited by your leads. If they spend time on your wedding venue page, follow up with tailored content around your wedding packages or testimonials from happy couples.

By understanding your prospects’ needs and interests and engaging with them thoughtfully at every stage of their journey, you’re not just selling them a space but providing an experience that’s hard to forget.

Real Talk: Why Your Group Sales Process Can’t Afford to Ignore CRM Technology

If you’re not utilizing CRM effectively, you’re leaving money on the table. Period.

Here are some more reasons to up your CRM game:

  • Differentiators: Position yourself and everyone on the sales team as a trusted advisor.
  • Customer loyalty: Do you think the sale is over once the event is done? Your follow-up strategies are just as important as your outreach strategies, and you’ll win by making a loyal customer for life. (Think of the referrals!)
  • Operational efficiency: From streamlining administrative tasks to enabling data-driven decision-making, CRM tools help sales teams optimize their operations and marketing strategies, ensuring they target the right audience with the right message at the right time.

Ignoring CRM tools means missing the opportunity to deeply understand and connect with your customers, ultimately putting you at a disadvantage.

The Bottom Line: Embrace the Power of CRM Tools or Get Left Behind

We don’t mean to sound dramatic, but personalization, automation, customization, and data are non-negotiables in sales and marketing, now and in the future.

CRM technology is the answer.

It’s essential for modern sales pros looking to secure their place in a competitive landscape.

Ready to Level Up? Here’s Your First Step

Start by evaluating your current CRM strategy.

Is it integrated with your sales and catering software? Are you using automation to its full potential? Are you personalizing your communications? If you answered no to these questions, it’s time for a CRM overhaul.

Hot Tip: Venue management software, Event Temple, integrates with Constant Contact’s Lead Gen and CRM Software (Lure Agency’s preferred sales and marketing software).

The hospitality industry is at a turning point, and CRM technology is the key to navigating this change successfully. Hotels can enhance customer engagement, streamline operations, and drive significant growth by focusing on strategic CRM utilization.

Have questions? Let’s chat >>. 

About Lure Agency

Lure Agency is renowned for its passion for R&R – Relationships and Revenue. This Hospitality B2B marketing agency stands out for its unique “Science and Soul” approach, expertly fusing data-driven strategies with creative flair. Specializing in helping independent resorts, tech companies, and suppliers and vendors in the hospitality industry.

Lure Agency crafts success stories by balancing human connection with tailored strategies. Their work goes beyond mere business transactions; it’s a journey of collaboration and innovation.

Lure Agency is committed to concocting success stories and inviting interested parties to learn more at www.lureagency.com.

Susan Tucker
Partner & COO
Lure Agency

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