Group Sales Efforts
During the first quarter, the Group Sales Department made 122 personal sales calls to meeting and group travel planners. In addition, telemarketing calls were made and e-mails and letters sent to 1,247 qualified meeting and group travel planners. As a result of these calls, 24 qualified leads were generated. These qualified leads represent 8,349 room nights for Springfield hotels/motels.
Bid presentations, proposals, or site inspections were given to 13 groups representing 7,926 room nights. Of these, 5 groups representing 4,003 room nights were booked and 8 groups representing 3,923 room nights are pending.
Definite group bookings for the first quarter from all bureau efforts totaled 18 groups and 27,661 room nights in Springfield hotels/motels.
Groups booked during the first quarter included:
- National Christian Homeschool Basketball Championships, March 2012, March 2013, and March 2014 tournaments, 8,100 room nights per year;
- Trinity Motivation Convention, October 2010 convention, 695 room nights, and;
- International Jim Beam Bottle & Specialty Clubs International Convention, July 2011 convention, 625 room nights.
Other activities of the Group Sales Department during the first quarter included:
- representing Springfield at the Joint Meeting Planners Trade Show in Jefferson City; Connect Marketplace in Louisville; SPORTS Trade Show in Branson; Missouri Society of Association Executives Funfest in Jefferson City; U.S. Olympic Congress Sports Symposium in Colorado Springs; and the Governor’s Conference on Economic Development in Kansas City;
- hosting a client night for meeting and event planners in the suite at Hammons Field;
- conducting a telemarketing blitz to meeting and event planners with Springfield hotel sales representatives;
- making a bid presentation to the American Truck Historical Society board of directors in South Bend, Indiana, and securing their 2014 convention for Springfield;
- hosting and providing extensive services for the Missouri Association for Career & Technical Education Joint Summer Conference;
- conducting interviews and hiring a new convention sales manager;
- providing management and marketing services for the Greater Springfield Area Sports Commission;
- prospecting for convention leads on online convention marketing databases purchased from Destination Marketing Association International and Backyard Marketing;
- conducting bi-monthly committee meetings with hotels on bureau/hotel projects, and;
- attending Greater Springfield Area Sports Commission meetings, Missouri Society of Association Executives and Society of Government Meeting Planners meetings in Jefferson City, Missouri Travel Council meetings, Lake Country Soccer board meetings, Missouri Hotel & Lodging Association meetings in Jefferson City, and Springfield Hotel Lodging Association meetings.
During the first quarter, the Convention Services Department provided registration services, shuttle services, information packets, and other miscellaneous services to 33 groups representing more than 9,750 delegates and approximately 7,750 room nights in Springfield hotels.
Some of the major conventions and events that received bureau assistance included:
- Bass Pro Shops Fall Hunting Classic;
- Missouri Association for Career and Technical Education;
- Missouri Center for Career Education New Teachers Institute;
- National Fireworks Association Annual Exposition;
- Phi Beta Psi Sorority, and;
- Red Angus Association of America.
Other activities of the Convention Services Department during the first quarter included:
- beginning centralized housing for the 2011 National Christian Homeschool Basketball Championships;
- continuing centralized housing for the Lake Country Soccer Incredible Pizza Fall Classic and Founders Cup tournaments;
- organizing information tables, shuttle service, and other convention services for the Bass Pro Shops Fall Hunting Classic, Missouri Association for Career & Technical Education, Missouri Center for Career Education New Teachers Institute, National Fireworks Association Annual Exposition, Phi Beta Psi Sorority, and Red Angus Association of America;
- distributing convention calendars to Springfield attractions, restaurants, and other businesses;
- meeting with meeting planners to arrange convention services for future events;
- entering data into the Destination Marketing Association International Meeting Information Network (MINT) database, and;
- participating in the monthly orientations for new military personnel at Fort Leonard Wood.
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