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Mastering event enquiry handling to win more business

Handling customer enquiries

Is your hotel’s event enquiry handling process putting off customers?

Effective enquiry handling is crucial for your hotel sales team to win more business. Prompt and efficient responses to event enquiries leave a positive impression on potential clients, demonstrating your hotel's commitment to exceptional service. 

By refining how you handle event enquiries, you can showcase professionalism and reliability, increasing the likelihood of securing bookings and building long term relationships.

This blog post explores what event enquiry handling is, why it's important to manage enquiries correctly and how your team can improve how event enquiries are handled, from timely follow-ups to personalised communication, ensuring your team can convert more enquiries into confirmed events. 

Elevate your sales approach and watch your revenue grow by mastering the art of enquiry handling.

What is event enquiry handling? 

Event enquiry handling refers to the process of managing and responding to event-related queries from potential clients. It is essential to handle customer enquiries efficiently to ensure a smooth customer journey and a positive guest experience. 

Why is event enquiry handling important?

Getting event enquiry handling right is crucial for several reasons. 

First impressions matter; timely and professional responses set a positive tone, showcasing your hotel's commitment to excellent service. 

Well managed enquiry handling not only enhances guest satisfaction but also increases the likelihood of converting enquiries into successful events, therefore driving your hotel's business growth.

Effective handling of enquiries builds trust, enhances your hotel’s reputation, and fosters long-term client relationships. Ultimately, well-managed enquiries contribute to operational efficiency, positive reviews, repeat business, and overall business growth, making it a vital aspect of the customer journey.

Tips to improve your event enquiry handling at your hotel

Event enquiry handling

1. Staff training

Your staff are the front line of enquiry handling. Ensure they are well-trained to handle all types of event enquiries professionally and efficiently.

Regular training sessions can help staff stay updated on the latest best practices and technologies. Role-playing different scenarios can also prepare them to respond promptly and effectively.

Training should cover:

  • Communication skills: Emphasise the importance of clear, concise, and courteous communication.

  • Product knowledge: Ensure staff are knowledgeable about all aspects of your hotel, from room types and amenities to event spaces and services.

  • Problem-solving: Equip your team with strategies to address common issues and unexpected situations.

Our Sales Team Training at Vicky Roberts Hotel Support covers enquiry handling, tools to convert and ways to negotiate.

2. Understanding the needs of different guests whilst handling enquiries

Not all guests are the same, and their needs can vary greatly. Train your staff to understand and anticipate these needs. For instance, corporate clients may prioritise meeting facilities and technical support, while a wedding couple may focus on how you can make their day special. Personalising responses based on the guest’s profile can make a significant difference.

3. Respond to event enquiries quickly, people move fast!

Time is of the essence when handling enquiries. A prompt response shows that you value the potential client’s time and business. Aim to respond within a few hours of receiving an enquiry. If you need more time to gather information, send an initial acknowledgement to let the client know you are working on their request.

Encourage your staff to follow up with a phone call as soon as possible afterwards, this personal touch can set you apart from competitors who rely solely on email communication.

4. Improving your event enquiry handling form: ‘The Devil is in the Detail’

Common sense? It should be but problems arise when we don't get the details correct from the beginning. 

Make your enquiry form your friend and your system’s thorough, ask the following questions:

  1. What is the purpose of the event?

  2. What is important to them?

  3. Who will be attending the event?

  4. What are the key event requirements in selecting the venue?

  5. What will influence their decision on venue selection?

  6. Who will be supporting in the venue selection and when will a decision be made?

  7. Where else are they considering?

A detailed form helps your staff understand the client's needs from the outset, enabling a more tailored responses it’s not all about the date.

5. Listen and understand your customer’s requirements

Active listening is crucial in handling enquiries. Pay close attention to what the client is saying, and ask follow-up questions to clarify their needs. Show empathy and understanding, demonstrating that you genuinely care about their requirements.

6. Make the customer feel special

Personalisation can make clients feel valued and special. Address them by name, reference their specific requirements, and offer tailored solutions. Highlight how your hotel can meet their unique needs and exceed their expectations.

7. Thank the customer for their event enquiry and be appreciative

A simple thank you can go a long way. Always thank the customer for their enquiry, expressing genuine appreciation for their interest in your hotel. But, don’t start your email response this way as every hotel will be doing this. You are not a robot so bring personality to your communication right from the start.

8. Be available if customers have further questions

Ensure your staff are accessible for any follow-up questions the client might have. Provide multiple contact options, such as phone, email, and chat support. Prompt and helpful responses to follow-up questions can reinforce the client’s positive impression of your hotel.

9. Technology and event enquiry handling

Technology can significantly enhance your enquiry handling process. Consider implementing the following tools:

  • Apps: Develop a mobile app that allows clients to submit enquiries and track their status.

  • Online event questionnaire: Create a detailed online questionnaire to gather comprehensive information from clients.

  • Social Media: Monitor social media channels for enquiries and respond promptly.

  • Contact form on your website: Ensure your website’s contact form is user-friendly and sends automated follow-up messages thanking the client and indicating when they can expect a detailed response.

10. Keep track of event enquiries on your CRM system

A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is invaluable for tracking and managing enquiries. Use your CRM to:

  • Log all enquiries and interactions

  • Set reminders for follow-ups

  • Track the status of each enquiry

  • Analyse enquiry trends and patterns

This organised approach helps ensure no enquiry falls through the cracks and allows you to provide timely and consistent responses.

To conclude…

Improving event enquiry handling at your hotel or venue requires a combination of staff training, understanding different guest needs, tightening up your systems whilst building relationships with your customers and maintaining a personal touch.

By responding quickly, asking the right questions, and making clients feel valued, you can enhance their experience and increase your chances of securing bookings. 

Remember, the way you handle event enquiries can significantly impact your hotel/venue’s reputation and success. Invest in refining this process to ensure your hotel stands out in the competitive hospitality market.


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