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Hersha Centralizes Sales System for Cross Selling, Increased Productivity & Larger Accounts

The hotel industry is emerging from a difficult period with strengthening demand in many markets. Companies are requiring more business travel and Hersha Hospitality Management is putting its national sales teams in high gear to meet the need.

"Things are heating up in New York City," says Nicole Allegra, CHSP, area director of sales-NYC for Hersha Hospitality Management. "We have been very busy. Demand is up in both corporate and leisure segments and we are managing our sales more aggressively."

Hersha Hospitality Management (HHM) operates approximately 71 properties nationally and Allegra oversees 12 of its New York City hotels with Hampton Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, and Holiday Inn Express flags. To manage sales and track real-time availability of guestrooms and meeting space across all its properties, regardless of the brand, HHM uses the hotel SalesPro automated sales solution from hotel SystemsPro, a provider of ASP-based enterprise solutions for hotel companies.

"I use hotel SalesPro to oversee my team's sales activity, coordinate group room booking, and monitor business in all of Hersha's New York City properties," says Allegra. "The system enables me to monitor sales calls, account traces, and contracts. I pull reports weekly to review my team's work and keep them on track to ensure we reach our targets."

View real-time availability across all properties
With hotel SalesPro, Allegra and her team are able to track, combine, and sell rooms across all 12 of their hotels in order to attract larger group blocks than if they offered just one property. The system enables Hersha's sales people to see each hotel's availability in real-time on one screen regardless. "The system lets us place groups we book ourselves in the most appropriate mix of properties," says Allegra.

Hersha also uses hotel SalesPro at the corporate and national level. National account managers for various corporate accounts use the system to update Allegra's team and others across the country about new national corporate agreements. Hersha corporate shares details of new contracts so regional teams, like Allegra's in New York, know what each client requires. The result is Hersha can sell nationally and serve clients locally within each account.

Leveraging the sales power of 71 hotels
"The national team focuses on four segments; corporate, tour and travel, sports and entertainment, and government," says Allegra. "Each segment has a Hersha national sales manager who assists the regional teams to ensure we understand how to perform appropriately. All corporate traces, sales calls, and client contacts are coordinated in hotel SalesPro. This strengthens Hersha's sales power."

"If Hersha opens a new property, it can leverage the selling power of 71 hotels across the U.S.," adds Allegra. "Hersha's presence in many markets enables us to market our properties more effectively to attract larger accounts."

Hersha's National Sales team works also with international tour operators. Thanks to hotel SalesPro, the team has the ability to book tour groups into New York hotels, as well as Hersha properties in Philadelphia, Boston, and other popular cities, so a group can always stay in a Hersha property regardless of the city it visits. "With hotel SalesPro we give tour operators one point of contact so its operation is more efficient," says Allegra.

With business travel on the rebound, it is important for Allegra and her team to access real-time property availability to close business quickly and with confidence. "We could not manage the large number of leads we receive if we did not have real-time availability and group pick-up in hotel SalesPro for each of our accounts and properties," saya Allegra. "Since SalesPro is web-based, my team and I can access group availability and rates for all our properties anytime, anywhere for more professional sales that increases revenue."

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