SALES & MARKETING…..THE HUMAN TOUCH…. WILL NEVER DIE
Select Representation was launched in 2012 by Jonathan Wilkins. After many years of recommending other sales & marketing companies to hoteliers and destination management companies in need of ‘local’ on the ground assistance…it was finally time to swap sides. Some may say it was a case of ‘poacher turned game keeper’, whilst others may refer to it as ‘game keeper turned poacher’. Either way, the past experiences of working within a buying, selling and product management environment have certainly helped.
Now in operation for close to 6 years, Jonathan and the team at Select Representation have established themselves as one of the leading hotel, villa & destination management representation companies in the UK, Ireland, Belgium, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Sweden. The primary focus has always been to promote outbound travel, from the markets mentioned, into the Asia Pacific region (to include Australia, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam) and the theory behind this…. being that it’s best to focus on what you really know. Yes, we know many other areas of the world too but prefer to concentrate on a zone that we have a great deal of love and passion for.
Overseas clients looking for ‘local’ support, will no doubt want to work with people that are trustworthy, hardworking, experienced, have strong knowledge of their markets, well connected, excellent communicators… and ultimately result driven. Select Representation has proven itself to be a practical, cost-effective sales and marketing option for hotels and destination management companies wishing to increase their market share and profits. Most of our clients have come from past working connections or recommendations from existing clients, tourist boards and other travel industry connections.
As we all know, the OTA (online travel agent) world is growing at an exceptional speed. Some of our clients have come to us as they feel that they are losing control of their identity via the OTA’s. Of course, selling via the OTA’s has its advantages but it’s clear that the owners are experiencing a lack of control of their brand and are concerned about ever increasing commissions. For example, if a customer books a double room via an OTA, and then experiences a problem, it’s likely the guest will blame the hotel, even though it may have been the fault of the booking engine. There is also a risk that guests that intend to book directly might end up booking via an OTA. If a customer searches online for a hotel, the first hits on the web search are likely to be sponsored adverts by the bigger global OTA’s and the guest is likely to click and book via the first available option. Why fund an OTA that is simply taking away bookings that could have come directly or via those partners that support you year round and during the good / bad times?
So why the need for a ‘local’ sales & marketing representative? In simple terms, our clients need their individual products to be able to stand out from the crowd. In today’s competitive world, there really are so many different choices out there. The way to make the difference still involves the human touch, which is something that the online world simply can’t provide. It’s not just about how cheap you can get a product for but the perceived value for money and service provided. The personal touch can be provided by a ‘local’ representative, such as Select Representation, who can meet partners ‘face to face’, answer intricate questions and help personalise more complicated requests.