HSMAI, CHA team up for conference

The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) and the Caribbean Hotel Association (CHA) will present the 2nd annual Caribbean Sales and Marketing Strategy Conference at the Hyatt Regency Downtown in Miami, FL, Dec. 7-8, 2006.
Both associations are working in tandem to plan, promote and produce this annual event with the goal of providing sales and marketing professionals in the Caribbean with information on the latest trends and resources in sales and marketing competencies that are necessary for success in growing their business.

“The CHA’s Marketing Committee determined some three yeas ago that we should make available to our members the very latest and the very best in hospitality sales and marketing strategy techniques and technology training, and our joint CHA/HSMAI conference certainly delivers this,” explained Emanuel Schreibmaier, CHA’s Marketing Committee Chairman and senior vice president of sales - the Americas, Sol MeliĆ” Hotels and Resorts.

The two-day dynamic agenda will delve into a wide range of sales and marketing topics and tools, while addressing the differences and nuances for both hoteliers and tourism officials doing business in the Caribbean region. The spectrum of topics will range from Internet marketing (eCommerce, web site design and search engine optimization) to revenue management, affiliate marketing, evolving wholesale models, developing sales strategies and strategic business planning.

“The value of the rich information and ideas that will be packed into this two-day forum is priceless for any sales and marketing professional in hospitality and travel,” stated Robert A. Gilbert, CHME, CHA, president and CEO of HSMAI.

“The hospitality industry worldwide is in a constant state of flux, with shifting influences that impact the Caribbean significantly. Through this gathering of experts in hospitality sales and marketing we intend to enable our industry to respond nimbly and effectively,” said Alec Sanguinetti, CHA director general and CEO, who will open the conference along with HSMAI’s Gilbert.

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On the agenda will be keynote addresses from industry experts including: Chip Conley, founder & CEO of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, speaking on “The Rebel Rules” and Vincent Vanderpool Wallace, secretary general, Caribbean Tourism Organization, discussing “The Most Well-Known Destination Brand in the World.”

The educational breakout sessions will feature four hot topics: Destination Marketing & Branding; Internet Marketing & eCommerce; Communications Management; and Managing Your Mix of Business. The content of each of the sessions has been carefully developed to appeal to a broad range of sales and marketing professionals in the region, with four specific intents: Primer (focusing on fundamentals of the topic); Technical (for those who have experience in the core competencies and wish to further explore and debate the topic); Destination (addressing the challenges of destinations and governments); and Hotel (for individuals engaged in the hotel industry).

Among the many industry professionals involved in these sessions will be: Rob Hatcher, area director of revenue management, Ritz Carlton; Cindy Estis Green, managing partner, The Estis Group; Maureen O’Hanlon, partner, the Prism Partnership; Barry Benjamin, vice president, Peace & Plenty Management; Nina Zapala, Partner, Fareed & Zapala Marketing Partners, as well as many others.

A special pre-conference workshop on “Strategic Planning for Hotels & Resorts” by John Fareed, Partner, Fareed & Zapala Marketing Partners, will be repeated again this year on Dec. 7. Also on the agenda will be a breakfast roundtable discussion, lunches and a networking reception.

Partnership opportunities are available. For information, contact HSMAI director of development Melanie Penoyar at 703-245-8037 or [email protected]

Registration for the two-day event is $295 for members of HSMAI or the Caribbean Hotel Association, and $395 for non-members. Rates increase $100 after Nov. 7, 2006.
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