Contributed by Dave Chan, V.P. of Finance & Corporate Development, APAC, SHR 

William Ng and Dave ChanWilliam Ng (L) and yours truly, Dave Chan.

As a savvy hotelier, you know how important it is for you and your hotel to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to the latest hotel management and revenue generating trends. This is especially true when it comes to hospitality technology, as best practices, products, and strategies can change so quickly. It was in this spirit that we attended and spoke at the latest Distribution Strategy Studio, a series of Asia-Pacific (APAC) workshops, co-organized with RateGain and other partners. The purpose of the workshops is to share with hoteliers the latest industry thinking, developments, and technology, and to help them simplify their distribution processes and strategies while improving their bottom line.Held in Dusit Thani Pattaya, Thailand, the theme for this workshop was "Revenue Management and Online Distribution Landscape-What's Next?" Aimed specifically at Thailand hoteliers, the event attracted more than 60 participants from independent, small, and regional chain hotels, including beach resorts, some braving the hot, humid weather to come from as far away as Bangkok, a journey of roughly two hours by car.

The format of each workshop includes a selection of speakers from different disciplines, each one bringing his or her own special point of view. This time around, presenters included Waranya Chansuwan, Senior Manager of Sales for Rategain, speaking on Common Revenue Opportunities that Hotels Miss and How to Tap Them; Kornveena Chatchawalworapong, Business Development Manager for Red Dot Payment, speaking on E-Commerce Solutions for Guaranteed Bookings; Baltasar Crespi, Head of Sales and Business for Roiback, speaking on Direct Channel: Customer Journey-How to Optimize Conversion Rates; and our own Sr. Director of Business Development, William Ng, discussing Providing a Better Guest Experience with a Well-Integrated Distribution Strategy.

William addressed his topic largely by taking the hoteliers on a virtual tour of the latest in CRS distribution, specifically exploring the end-to-end process of a well-integrated distribution strategy, and what that means to today's hotelier.

To wrap up the day after such an information-rich workshop, we enjoyed a networking cocktail reception where we could all relax and have fun getting to know our speakers and the hoteliers in attendance. For some, it was a new experience. "This is the first hospitality workshop I've ever attended in Pattaya, so I wasn't sure what to expect," commented one resort hotelier. "But it was really fun and informative, and I hope there are more of these in the future."

Distribution Strategy Studio

Not only are these events proving to be enjoyable on a social and networking level for newcomers and seasoned hoteliers, they are truly educational for all, providing new ideas, integrated solutions, and practical strategies that hoteliers can take back to their businesses and start using now. Even for those who had taken part in previous educational events, there was new value to be found. "It was very informative and interesting," said a regional chain hotelier. "The speakers were refreshing and engaging, with lots of new ideas, and next time, I'm going to ask my colleagues to attend, too."

The next stop for the Distribution Strategy Studio? The Manila Marriott Hotel, Pasay City, Philippines, February 6, 2018. You can register here now. See you there!

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