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Why Hotel Sales Managers Should Use Reciprocity In Their Sales Process

Jon Sholter


Today, in less than 3 minutes, we are going to cover the following: The Law of Reciprocity

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Everyone knows the quote, you reap what you sow. It's literally in the Bible.

The more generous you are, the more you receive. This isn't surprising to many; it is simply the law of reciprocity in action.

In hotel sales, you'll often see hoteliers notoriously cheap in what they offer their potential clients to try them out and how they reward their ongoing clients for their loyalty.

It must be noted that our industry is littered with rewards programs for transient guests. These programs offer immense value for this clientele, so these initiatives are not the topic of discussion.

We are talking about clients driven to your hotel by your direct sales efforts.

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Imagine a potential meeting or hotel room client who brings in $50,000 in revenue a year. You know of this client, and you know they use a competing hotel. What are you going to do to get them to your property?

Let's walk through this scenario to see the law of reciprocity in action.

Assume you have identified and qualified your client. Meaning you are talking to the person who controls the business you want.

You now want to develop a relationship with them.

So, are you going to phone them, invite them for a site tour, send them some emails, or take them out to lunch?

Well, perhaps you should, but is this enough?

In many cases, it isn't, so it is time to play the long game in the most sincere and authentic way possible.

Instead of ticking nurturing calls and emails off your to-do list like you're at the grocery store, start using them to develop a real relationship with your prospect.

What does this mean?

Well, what if, over the course of the year, you learned through conversation what your clients liked, what their hobbies might be, and what they do in their spare time?

Now, what if, later in the year, you gave them a high-quality gift, for no reason, personalized to this interest?

Imagine the wow factor of that moment.

This client may enjoy this gift so much they have no choice but to try your hotel someday in the future. They might even feel like they owe it to you.

And if it doesn't work? Well, just know you've spent money on worse, and the sale is never lost.

What is $100 divided by $50,000? What is $500 divided by $50,000? Those are low acquisition costs or, in a worst-case scenario, low-risk bets.

The law of reciprocity stretches far beyond this specific example.

The point is to not always be cheap and generic. The point is to care for your client personally and to give without expectation.

Remember, if you are not treating your current clients with next-level appreciation, someone else might be.

As always, thank you for reading.


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