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HOT TAKE: 4 Reasons Suppliers Have a Hard Time Selling in the Hospitality Industry

Hotel suppliers in the hospitality industry must navigate a complex and competitive landscape when trying to make sales. In order to be successful, at minimum, they need to understand the needs of hotel stakeholders, build relationships with prospects, create an excellent website experience, and demonstrate a service-orientation approach.

In this Hot Take, Jill Dean Rigsbee, CEO & Founder of iDEAL Hospitality Partners, as well as Cory Falter and Susan Tucker of Lure Agency, will provide tips and insights on how suppliers can position themselves for success.

Why Hotel Suppliers May Have a Hard Time in Sales

Jill Dean Rigsbee, CEO & Founder, iDEAL Hospitality Partners

Often times suppliers have a really hard time figuring out what part of the hospitality ecosystem they approach. Is it the brand? Is it the hotel? Is it the owner? Is it the management company? Is it the group purchasing organization or is it all?

And then, once they've landed on that, who do they speak to?

Which department is best suited for their products and services? It's something that's often asked.

Andy Haynes, Vice President, Strategic Growth, iDEAL Hospitality Partners

One reason it is hard to sell hospitality is probably that you're not being hospitable yourself. You're putting your needs to close the deal before their needs to solve a problem.  You're not talking their language.  You don't feel a service orientation that makes them feel comfortable that you'll take care of them once the deal is done.

You won't have to sell if you can make them want to buy.

Cory Falter, Partner & Visionary, Lure Agency


Many suppliers are still trying to strong-arm their prospects

into buying their products by capturing their contact information and spamming them with annoying messages that create unnecessary barriers.

B2B prospects don't buy that way. They buy from those who can solve their most acute pain points. And that starts by educating and inspiring them first. So they turn to you as the trusted expert when they're ready to buy.

Susan Tucker, Partner & Integrator, Lure Agency

I think hotel suppliers could be struggling because they are giving a poor website experience.

What do I mean by that?  You're not building relationships upfront.  You are not solving problems for them or showing them how you can solve their problem.  You're just talking about all your features, not showing your benefits.

Another part of that is having a poor user experience. I went to a website recently and I really wanted to connect with them on LinkedIn. I scroll down to the bottom of the page LinkedIn logo. You click. It goes nowhere.  Bad experience. Look into your website.

See how you can make it a better experience for your prospects.

Overall, it takes thought, care and attention to make a successful sale in the hospitality industry.

By understanding the needs of hotel stakeholders, building relationships with prospects, creating an excellent website experience and taking a service-orientation approach, suppliers can be better positioned for success.

Learn more when you sign up for our Masterclass on April 27, 2023. Reserve your spot: Supercharge Your Sales Strategy: The Hospitality Supplier Masterclass

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