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Nobody retains your event planning agency to do administrative work. They hire you for brain power, creativity, and industry savvy, among other things. 

So why spend most of your sourcing time bogged down with administrative tasks? We’re talking about compiling bids, cutting and pasting updates, going back-and-forth with hotels for missing info, keeping track of negotiation details, etc. Of course, these jobs are vital for success and that’s why it’s important to know you can manage them all – instantly and more accurately – with technology.

When you automate venue sourcing, you make a quantum shift in the way you manage the thousands of details that accompany every event. Exciting new technologies now on the market eliminate many of the administrative tasks that consume so much of your focus and give you the ammo you need to truly consult clients. Here are a few examples from etouches’ third-party sourcing solution:

  • Big Data, Small Slices – In today’s seller’s market, demonstrating value is tougher than ever. And with customer expectations always on the rise, standard concessions are no longer enough. Although big data offers a goldmine of insights, many planners and customers struggle to know which chunks of data apply. Without careful management, big data can become so complex that it brings decision-making to a crushing halt. 

Thankfully, great new advances offer a simpler solution. They capture and aggregate data and then present the relevant information in bite-size pieces right at the point when you need it. Think past rates paid, brands the organization has booked and saved with the most, other meetings in the works throughout the company, and more. Large, third-party agencies bring a broad, companywide perspective enabling them to see opportunities that customers at the division level often miss. Leverage these insights to negotiate more concessions that boost meeting ROI.

  • Easier Negotiations – With occupancy high and availability low, hotel negotiations have become much more complicated. When negotiating with multiple venues now, planners are no longer able to manage every detail. There’s just too much back-and-forth communication with hotels, and consequently, important information can get lost along the way.

Has a concession from Bid #3 gone missing in Version #7? No need to hunt through long email threads. etouches has a new negotiation engine that tracks and stores the entire bid history, enabling you to view all the changes in one place. Calculations are done automatically, so data is instantly available and up-to-date. 

Simple graphs show how each hotel stacks up against the others, making it easy to spot your best options. You can also compare preferred dates to alternate ones to build the best scenario for each event. Then, customize the view to highlight the essential info and export graphs to your customer for focused discussions. It’s another way technology simplifies the process, helping you negotiate better deals and get meetings booked.

  • Proven Value – Hotels, not planners, quantify concession values to save you time and provide immediate credibility. The aim is to highlight the value of all you do and the effort you’ve put forth from start to finish to deliver the best options for your customers.

In our experience, planners who leverage technology gain market share faster and reap additional benefits from improved efficiency and communication. The value of a great planner isn’t about being an administrative whiz. It really comes down to understanding the customer’s vision and transforming it into an amazing event. Compelling new sourcing and booking solutions get you there faster. They also provide a barrier to exit, enabling you to gain valuable insights and customer confidence at the outset and maintain your essential role throughout the entire planning process.

Learn more about how to change the way that planners manage the thousands of details surrounding each of their events in this free eBook.

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