Martin Horner is Principal and co-founder, along with partner Shea Soucie, of Chicago- and Naples, Florida-based interior architecture and design firm Soucie Horner, Ltd. – and owner and operator of The Wickwood Inn in Saugatuck, Michigan. By leveraging Soucie Horner’s twenty-three years defining lifestyle through design for his luxury residential interior design clients, Horner brings his unique visions regarding the many ways design impacts the guest experience to The Wickwood Inn. From the historic, eleven-room inn’s character-rich exterior to its graciously appointed, warmly welcoming guest rooms and suites, the inn brings to life Horner’s elegant design sensibilities. Moreover, it invites guests to experience Horner’s definition of luxury lifestyle living during their stay – and even at home, thanks to the inn’s carefully curated team of luxury brand partners, whose products layer the inn with sumptuous, comforting amenities, and are available for guests to purchase. These brands include The Luxury Bed Collection, Matouk, La Bottega, Waterworks, ALT for Living, and SHIIR Rugs. Horner is also co-founder and Lead Designer of SHIIR Rugs, an artisanal rug company established in 2012. He is a member of the Leaders of Design Council, the Design Leadership Network, and the Royal Oak Society. He is a former faculty member at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Horner attended the Ecole Speciale d’Architecture in Paris and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Interior Architecture. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Butler University. Horner lives with his partner in Chicago and Naples.
E Scot Fuller-Beatty is a seasoned educator, high-energy conference speaker, webinar creator, and trusted consultant within the independent lodging industry. Audiences love his practical strategies and how he breaks down hard-to-understand topics, such as yield management, guest communications, Google, getting the most out of your website and booking engine, entrepreneurship, and creating profitable relationships with OTAs into easy-to-understand concepts. He challenges his audiences to leverage their skills and hyper-focus on what matters most in their business. With a background in education, research, sales, culinary arts, technology, and entrepreneurial leadership, his 25-year career has been a whirlwind of adventure. Scot worked his way up from entry-level positions at restaurants, bars, and sales while teaching full-time. Then, in 2009, Scot left teaching and purchased a bed and breakfast in gorgeous Portland, Maine, transforming it into the 10-year recipient of the coveted Travelers’ Choice Award and GreenLeaders distinction. After 11 years of operation, Scot leases his property to his long-time innkeeper. In 2016, Scot joined a start-up lodging technology company where he worked with hundreds of property owners and staff to significantly increase revenue and create processes to achieve a better work-life balance. Scot recently took his own business advice and decided to continue sharing his knowledge and lending a helping hand to lodging owners and staff as an industry consultant. In 2022, he co-founded The Bold Collaboration, a consulting agency specializing in independent lodging. Scot is passionate about helping his clients through research and education and strives to be a visionary for the lodging industry. Professionally, Scot was elected to the Association of Lodging Professionals Board of Directors in 2021 and now serves as the Board Chair. From September through December 2022, Scot served as the Interim CEO of the association during the CEO search process. He returned to Board Chair on January 1, 2023. Personally, Scot loves to travel, ski, and cook and lives in Portland, Maine, with his dogs and husband, all of whom bring him joy and drive him crazy, on the daily.
Amy Smith is the owner of Saratoga Arms Hotel. Located in Saratoga Springs, NY, their family owned and operated the 31 room hotel has been serving guests since 1998. You might say Amy was born to be in this business. Her parents opened the first B&B in Saratoga Springs in 1984. Amy works on the sales and marketing for the hotel, constantly testing new marketing channels, different hotel packages and specials for maximum yield.
Wynn J. Salisch, CHS, is the Founder and Principal of Casablanca Payments, a division of Casablanca Ventures LLC, and has over 50 years of experience in leisure industry development and operations. He helped create and direct the award-winning historic Montauk Yacht Club & Inn in the Hamptons on Long Island which started as a six-room bed & breakfast inn and grew into an acclaimed 200-room luxury grand resort hotel-spa-marine inn-executive conference center that hosted Elizabeth Taylor, Estee Lauder, the Governor of the State of New York, and the launch of the Aramis cologne brand, and was featured in the ABC network television series Revenge. He went on to own a successful restaurant in East Hampton NY and direct operations at the historic West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills NY and its famed 16,000-seat Forest Hills Stadium (“America’s Wimbledon”) and the ABC Sports-telecast World Championship Tennis Tournaments of Champions at Forest Hills. He’s also guided over 1,000 entertainment and food & beverage operations on literally every continent on the planet, as well as across Oceania and the High Seas. A graduate of The School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University, Wynn has been a Partner on the Electronic Crimes Task Force of the U.S. Secret Service and was awarded the Electronic Transaction Association’s Certified Payments Professional designation (earned by less than 1% of the payments industry). He’s on the boards of the Association of Lodging Professionals and the Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (NYC chapter), and is a member of CABBI, CH&LA, Select Registry, New England Inns & Resorts Association, Southern Innkeepers Association, National Cybersecurity Alliance, and the Cornell Hotel Society. Wynn launched Casablanca 20 years ago as a merchant services education and brokerage firm with the mission of bringing five-star luxury hotel concierge-quality service to the payments industry, and to rescue friends and associates from fast-talking credit card processor salespeople claiming to offer savings but leaving them with hidden high costs, confusing fees, and poor service. The company now serves nearly 1,000 clients nationwide with analysis, education, and payment processing and technology solutions, and works with dozens of top-notch technology providers to find the best solutions for their clients’ specific needs. With its origins in luxury hospitality, the company's laser focus on exceptional customer service has resulted in the highest client loyalty rate in the payments industry according to over a dozen national processing companies. Casablanca’s assistance is always completely free and without obligation, and clients keep 100% of all savings.
Rachel Boggan is the General Manager at the Saratoga Arms Hotel in Saratoga Springs, NY. Rachel has been a hospitality professional since 2001 with experience in fine dining restaurant management, private event planning and boutique hotel management. Rachel has a keen eye for guest satisfaction and stay personalization. In addition to her professional credentials, Rachel is the proud mother to a 7-year old son and 9-year old black lab. Rachel also boasts exceptionally perfect handwriting, a voracious love of reading and the endearing habit of photographing hotel details, from amenities to housekeeping carts, while on vacation with her fiancé.
Kelly Garbarino is an expert in marketing strategy, driving demand, and building successful, profitable inns and event venues. Through her first-hand experience managing hospitality properties, she brings a holistic view of the industry and experience in successfully implementing new programs. Her work with property owners is focused on helping them understand how to optimize their strategy and define their brand to accelerate revenue.
Michael Glaeser is a Franchise Support Consultant for Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, a residential brand of Empower Brands. For the last 25 years, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives has been transforming outdoor living spaces and exquisite architecture with low voltage lighting. Outdoor Lighting Perspectives works one-on-one with our clientele to ensure their lighting projects reflect the uniqueness of each property, illuminate beautiful public spaces for the enjoyment of their guests while adhering to individual preferences and investment levels. Michael has been featured on the Frictionless Innkeeper podcast. Alongside a group of talented and tenured lighting professionals, Michael provides design training and lighting solutions for franchisees and clients across the United States.
Chris Kelly has been to more inns and bed and breakfasts than, well, perhaps anyone! And his love of travel and know-how in the hospitality industry has benefitted thousands of innkeepers over the years. Affectionately named, the Google boy, when he first started his marketing career at White Stone Marketing almost 20 years ago, (he was working in the AdWords Department at Google), he is now the lead consultant for White Stone Marketing’s newest division, White Stone Brokers, where he conducts on property market evaluations for innkeepers ready to sell. Years of touring, marketing, and promoting inns all over the U.S. has led to his uniquely qualified expertise to assist buyers and sellers in achieving their dreams.
Audra grew up in the suburbs of Washington DC before attending the University of Florida and settling in St Augustine. Her degree was in Biotechnology, but she has dabbled in many fields before finding her place in the hospitality industry. Having run a B&B in historic St Augustine for 5 years, she brings a knowledgeable perspective to her role as account manager for the wholesale company, InnStyle.
The Queen of Guest Experience for Touch Stay digital guidebooks, co-host of The Guest Cast podcast, industry leader and consultant, author, speaker, and owner/manager of two vacation rental brands: Branson Family Retreats and Missouri Haus. VRMA Excellence Award winner for the inaugural Community Impact Award, in recognition of her mission focus to serve her guests and community through hospitality.
Driven by the transformative power of digital technology, Anthony Lazzara has established a career fostering growth and innovation within market-leading brands where he witnessed first-hand the potential of a cloud platform that offered intelligent and simple solutions to its users. In January of 2018, Anthony joined the leading all-in-one software solution company, Little Hotelier, where he remains today, leading the company’s fast-growing footprint throughout the dynamic Americas region. His intimate understanding of the different landscapes and market trends that exist within each country has proven invaluable for local hoteliers looking to best compete for today’s traveler. Helping Hoteliers find a solution that will give you more control over your business, streamline the reservation process and drive reservations and revenue to your property.
Carol pivoted from corporate marketing to hospitality in mid career. She and her husband Tom purchased and operated a 12 guest room Select Registry Inn on Cape Cod for 12 years. During their Innkeeping career they had success that they shared by creating "Innkeeping from the Innside", a seminar for Aspiring Innkeepers. This lead to a commercial real estate business, Cape Cod Village Realty, and to their consulting business, Inn Advisors, working with experienced Innkeepers around the country to recognize opportunities to grow their Return on Investment and plan for future success in all its forms.
Beth Robinson was appointed Chair of the ALP Advocacy Committee in 2021, which merged her legal/legislative background and hospitality experience. During her legal profession, Beth was elected Legislative Chair for the California State Bar Executive Committee, tracking legislation, preparing position papers, working with legislators on bill amendments, and testifying in front of the California State Assembly and Senate. She was approved by the California State Bar as a continuing legal education speaker conducting seminars on legislative updates. During Beth’s service as Legislative Chair, she continued working as a trial attorney in private practice and periodically served as judge pro tem for the El Dorado County Superior Court. After 19 years of legal practice, Beth and her husband, Grant, traveled North America exploring National Parks in search of that perfect lodging opportunity and found their dream two miles outside of Yosemite. In 2015, TripAdvisor named their Inn one of the top 25 Bed and Breakfasts in the United States. They were featured in Visit California, published in Yosemite guidebooks, and televised on Valley Life. Beth and her husband are now owners of “Inn Reflection of You,” offering their services as Interim Innkeepers. Beth enjoys working with the ALP Advocacy Committee members who are committed to staying apprised of issues affecting the lodging industry.
Ben Ollic is a Sr. Digital Marketer who joined Q4Launch in 2016. He leads the Digital, Social Media, and Email Marketing Teams with his primary focus on serving Q4Launch’s customers through data-driven insights. Ben is well-versed in all channels of digital marketing strategy including but not limited to strategic planning, SEO, PPC, Content Creation, and Social Media. He is keenly focused on results and leans into his creative, digital marketing approach to achieve them. Ben is originally from the Charleston, SC, area and pairs his personal travel experiences with his industry knowledge to serve the travel industry.
Cindy Bachmann is the founder and CEO of Innkeeper’s Advantage. She has worked with hundreds of property owners over the past 16 years to develop a complete suite of easy-to-use lodging software. Her company was the first in the B&B industry to offer custom-designed websites with integrated property management and online reservation system, channel management, and content management that all work together. Her company also offers Book it Now, a stand-alone version of the software. In addition to a full suite of product functionality, her company has direct integration partnerships with Google Hotel Ads, Airbnb, TripAdvisor, Expedia, Booking.com, Automated Texting Providers, e-Signature providers, Security Services, Remote Lock, and QuickBooks Online. Cindy credits her company’s success to the innovative and hardworking team at Innkeeper’s Advantage, great input from her customers, and to her previous 30 years of experience working with large and small businesses as a Senior Business and Technology Consultant.
Terry and Peggy Hammer opened Hermann Hill Vineyard Inn and Spa in 1995 as a five room property. Over the years they have expanded to a second location, added more rooms to the Inn, five Missouri River Bluff cottages, a Wedding Venue, and spa services to the Hermann Hill brand. All of this expansion was done while also being co-owners of a Ford dealership. Annual revenue has grown from less than $100,000 to over $3.5M, with two-thirds coming from lodging and one third from weddings and events. Peggy and Terry travel extensively and are away from Hermann Hill over six months each year. Four Managers are responsible for both lodging and wedding operations, marketing, and staff hiring and scheduling. Terry has been a frequent speaker at lodging and business conferences over the years on subjects ranging from yield management, branding, staff compensation, amenities, alternate revenue sources, dealing with the "new normal," and a la carte lodging options. Hermann Hill introduced "Stay Your Way" in 2019, offering their guests the option of including breakfast, hot tubs, and welcome trays. Approximately 25% of Hermann Hill guests make Stay Your Way reservations.
Acorn Marketing is a marketing agency and website design firm with an emphasis on small lodging properties including Bed and Breakfasts, Inns, Boutique Hotels, and Vacation Rentals. As former innkeepers, we understand the business, and how many directions in which a small business owner can be pulled. We help our clients market their properties with impressive, easy to use website design, customized marketing plans and strategic revenue monitoring services. Lisa Kolb, Acorn's president and co-founder, is a well-known and in-demand expert conference speaker who has taught at national and regional lodging conferences for the past 2 decades. In 2022 Acorn Marketing celebrated their 20th anniversary, and we continue work hard to make sure we're on the cutting edge of online marketing for our industry. Our main objective is to do our best to ensure our client's continued success!
Chip Rogers joined the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) as President and CEO in January 2019. AHLA is America’s only national association dedicated to serving the interests of the entire hotel and lodging industry. In his role as President & CEO, Chip has led the AHLA team and the lodging industry to achieve tangible results for AHLA members. Subsequently, he has received numerous awards and has been recognized as one of the 25 most influential by Business Travel News, as one of the most influential people in Washington D.C. by Washingtonian magazine, Top 50 Most Influential Leaders in Hospitality, USA, and Global by Hospitality Index, a Freedom Award recipient from ECPAT-USA and three times as a top lobbyist by the Hill newspaper. Under Chip’s leadership, AHLA was named as “100 Associations That Will Save the World” by ASAE, was honored with the White House “Presidential Award for its Pledge to America’s Workers” and was recognized with the PR Week Purpose Awards 2020. In addition to leading AHLA, Chip is a member of the board of directors for the United States Travel Association, Community Leaders of America, and the California Hotel & Lodging Association. Prior to joining the hospitality industry, Chip served in the Georgia General Assembly. He was elected to office six times and was unanimously elected twice to serve as Senate majority leader. Chip earned his undergraduate degree from Georgia Tech and his MBA from Georgia State.
Darlene Blankenship is a graduate of Florida State University. She is a career entrepreneur having owned and operated three successful customer service oriented businesses over the past 30 years, including a bed and breakfast in Western North Carolina. Owning and operating the B&B ignited her passion for the hospitality industry and she incorporated her experience and knowledge of customer service and customer retention from her other businesses to elevate guest experiences and satisfaction. Darlene joined Select Registry in 2018 and currently serves as Director of Membership assisting both new and seasoned innkeepers enhance grow their businesses through Select Registry membership.
Back in the 'olden days', before Facebook, before Google, before high-speed internet, Liz Hamilton started in the lodging industry with BedandBreakfast.com, an online digital directory that listed bed and breakfasts in the US and around the world. Today, as the CEO of Maia Internet Consulting, she works with an experienced team of industry professionals offering business owners the convenience of a full-service digital design and marketing agency.
Marilyn is the Broker and owner of www.marilynbushnell.com and Bushnell & Bushnell Services, and affiliated with The B&B Team, a real estate brokerage and consulting company dedicated to helping aspiring and current innkeepers achieve their goals in the unique lodging industry. She and her late husband, Scott, owned and operated The Lafayette Inn, an 18 guest room Select Registry inn located in Easton, PA. During her 25+ years in the innkeeping industry, Marilyn has served in numerous volunteer positions with ALP as well as other local B&B associations, currently working on the Leadership Development Committee as well as various roles with the national conference.
Mark joined Acorn’s development team in April of 2010. For the past 32 years, Mark has literally grown up in the bed and breakfast industry while working in the family-owned Arcadian Inn Bed & Breakfast (Now Arcadian Getaways). During this time, learning the importance of Internet marketing and web presence, Mark began to study web design and code to help with the family business. Mark was awarded the Over-All Best Work Award as a Freshman at OCCC while working for his Associate in Applied Science, Technology, and definitely found his passion in life. Mark lives in Guthrie, Oklahoma with his two children, Allie and Christian.
Nathaniel worked in the IT field as a subject matter expert in the role of a Build Release Administrator, assisting Project Managers and web developers with creating, updating, and maintaining websites for large client projects. He spent his IT career at various corporations including MasterCard, Maritz Motivation Solutions, and US Bank. In 2019 Nathaniel changed careers and began working with his wife managing vacation rentals and providing other services related to industry.
After graduating in Agricultural Business Marketing from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, Scott’s career ambitions quickly pivoted after he and his wife Allison purchased the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Directory in 1994. The paperbound directory was a cooperative marketing project that featured 300 bed and breakfast inns throughout the state of Oregon. Shortly after assuming ownership of the publication, the internet took on a life of its own. Scott’s lightbulb moment hit and he realized that the guidebook could easily transition into an online directory. He put the wheels into motion, saved a few forests, and retired the printed version by launching one of the first online bed and breakfast guides in 1995. The rest as they say is history. But the story doesn’t stop there. As an online publisher, Scott segued his passion for travel and hospitality by creating a service to help luxury inns, boutique hotels and special event venues turn their passion into profits through digital marketing initiatives. Scott has been an industry trailblazer having founded the first internet marketing agency solely dedicated to bed and breakfast inns and creating the original e-commerce tracking code – a tracking system for innkeepers and hoteliers that traced reservation dollars back to the original source. His vision for excellence has produced some of the best design work in our niche industry. Today Scott oversees the company’s growth and works directly with clients. Recently White Stone Marketing expanded its capabilities with the launch of its new wedding and special events marketing department. Scott is often asked to speak at industry events and is considered an expert in his field
Sean Rolsen, Director of Customer Success at ThinkReservations, is a seasoned hospitality professional with over two decades of experience in the industry. Having worked in every position at the family inn and restaurant, Sean has a unique understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing hospitality businesses. In his role at ThinkReservations, Sean leads the customer support, onboarding, and customer success teams, using his extensive knowledge and passion for the industry to help countless "Thinkers" grow their businesses over the past seven years. With a wealth of experience and expertise, Sean is well-equipped to share valuable insights and best practices with properties of all sizes.
Steve Short, the Founder & CEO of the Frictionless Guest App, is an avid B&B traveler who wanted to give innkeepers a way to communicate their local recommended places to their guests in an easy-to-use app. Designed to simplify the life of the innkeeper as well, the Frictionless Guest App provides guests with anytime, anywhere access to this valuable information. Innkeepers have control over their recommendations and don’t need any technical knowledge to get their app working immediately. Steve and his wife Susan live in Howard County Maryland with their sons, Mackie and Will, and their dogs, Lily, Sugaree, and (Ramble On) Rose. In 2000, they purchased Montrose, a home they had placed on the National Register of Historic Places after completing an extensive 9-month restoration, where they have lived ever since. They actively support Adoptions Together, a non-profit adoption agency, and Steve coaches his sons’ rec baseball and basketball teams, while also trying to find time to play guitar in a local band. The Frictionless Guest App is an offering created by Netlink Resource Group, Inc., which Steve has owned and managed since 2004. Founded in 1996, Netlink has been building and supporting web/mobile applications for hospitality clients for more than 20 years.
Prior to the Bed and Breakfast industry, Randy worked as a consultant to the business school market and previous to that as a talent scout for the consumer marketing industry. His business school clients included Harvard Business School, USC, Carnegie-Mellon University, Vanderbilt University, Washington University, University of Georgia, Rice University, along with many others. His consumer packaged goods clients included General Mills, Johnson & Johnson, Pepsico, ConAgra, Unilever, Kraft, Kimberly-Clark, American Airlines, Intuit, among others.
Eben Viens has a long history within the hospitality industry. His early years were spent under the wing of Inn guru Bill Oates and behind the scenes at two historic New England Country Inns. He has worked on behalf of countless Inn Buyers and Sellers over the last decade and draws on his background in anthropology and passion for hospitality design (in all things) in his work as owner and managing partner of The B&B Team®. Eben is based in Vermont but spends most of his time visiting Inn owners throughout the country, extracting stories from financial statements, and enjoying authentic expressions of hospitality.
Chad has previously worked as a youth ministry before venturing into marketing, analytics, and product management in the publishing industry for 15 years. He transitioned into healthcare working in product development and experience design for a Fortune 6 company before moving into innkeeping. He is passionate about delivering an excellent customer experience, and enjoys reading, cooking, beer-making, and hiking.
Travis has been with ResNexus for over 4 years. With ResNexus, Travis has been able to personally visit over 500 inns and innkeepers in over 30 states, offering educational sessions, system reviews, and professional assistance as part of ResNexus’ “Road Trip” program. Travis loves getting to know innkeepers, learning about their properties, and helping them find solutions to their problems.
ResNexus Vice President Nathan Mayfield has over two decades of marketing experience spanning multiple industries. He has over 13 years of operational experience ranging from a large billion dollar company down to a small local business. Nathan has worked with ResNexus for over 9 years and truly believes in their mission statement of “Elevating Industries, one business at a time, through service, innovation, and education!” In addition, Nathan Mayfield is a member of Forbes Business Council and regularly contributes articles and other important information for the hospitality industry on that platform.
With more than 25 years in sales, marketing and sales management, Alan Berg is uniquely qualified to help wedding and event businesses succeed. He was recently included in the “Top 75 Speakers To Watch” by Motivator Music on LinkedIn, alongside Tony Robbins, Gary V and Dave Ramsey. He’s the wedding and event industry’s only Certified Speaking Professional™ and one of only 39 Global Speaking Fellows worldwide!
Tim is the newest Partner at the Hearthside Group. Tim has over 40 years of hospitality marketing and operations experience. For 11 years, he was a partner in a very successful 12 room inn in Vermont, the Inn at the Round Barn Farm. In addition, he has spent the last four years working as a trusted consultant to the inn trade, giving seminars and advising both inn buyers and inn sellers nationally.
With over a decade of experience at the intersection of hospitality and media, and a passion for creating meaningful experiences and inspired headlines, Sarah Doyle joined Visit Phoenix in 2019 and serves as the Director of Communications. Overseeing all aspects of communications for Visit Phoenix, Doyle develops media strategy, launches media missions in key markets, crafts customized story angles and flawlessly hosts countless media itineraries annually. She plays an integral role in elevating the nation's fifth-largest city among audiences that would not otherwise be acquainted with this rapidly changing destination. By ensuring that all media and PR initiatives align with Phoenix's new identity, she leads a team that's committed to enhancing the overall visibility of the urban heart of the Sonoran Desert.
Rachel Semik is the Media Relations Manager at Visit Phoenix, and has been a valued resource to fellow tourism marketers for Influencer Marketing to help maximize results of campaign partnerships. From presenting on Virtual Press Trips using UGC to fully (paid and unpaid) hosted trips with macro and underutilized micro influencers, Rachel provides the tools needed to create your own success. When not traveling to their top feeder markets for Visit Phoenix, Rachel is hosting journalists and travel content creators in the Greater Phoenix area, telling the unexpected stories that travelers will love. Rachel enjoys working out, hiking and mountain biking through her favorite trails, and tasting her way through margarita scene in Greater Phoenix. She finds time is well-spent trying new restaurants with her husband and snuggling with their fur baby, Penny.
Peter grew up in Scotland and graduated from Strathclyde University in Electrical Engineering. He has 35 years of experience in telecommunications, including 30 years in Canada, the USA and France with Nortel Networks. During his final ten years he held executive roles in wireless communications. In 2006 Peter & his wife Susan bought West Hill House B&B a 9-guest room historic home in Warren, Vermont. It is now one of the top-rated B&Bs in the area and a Select Registry property. Peter has been an active member of the local Chamber of Commerce and was Board Chair for over two years. Peter also represented the business community on the Mad River Valley Planning District’s Steering Committee for several years. Peter is an active member of the Vermont Lodging Association. A key focus has been helping the VLA and the Vermont Chamber lobby state lawmakers and regulators on the STR issues and tourism marketing. Peter was recognized as Innkeeper of the Year in 2019 by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce. In 2022 Peter was elected to the ALP Board and is currently Board Secretary.
Annie Buck started with Acorn Marketing in 2008 as a new development project manager and since then has worn many hats. She has been Acorn’s Education Manager since 2016, as well as the go-to person for help with Google Business Profile. Annie creates most of Acorn’s educational videos, leads Acorn University, enjoys working on new websites and the constant learning entailed in working in the lodging technology industry.
Mitch Pies owns and operates the Mitchell J. Pies Insurance Agency, specializing in serving owners of lodges, inns, resorts, boutique hotels, and restaurants. Residing in Sitka, Alaska Mitch and his wife Gloria love to travel. Staying in and dining at family-owned lodges, inns, resorts, boutique hotels, and restaurants is always one of their highlights when traveling. Mitch was born and raised in Rochester, New York, earning his Bachelor of Science degree in Education and Master of Arts at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. As an admissions counselor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Mitch traveled and recruited students from all around the country and became intrigued by the hospitality industry. After holding several positions in the college admissions field, including Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management at St. Louis University, Mitch decided to pursue his dream of entrepreneurship and opened the Mitchell J. Pies Insurance Agency in 1998.
With over four decades of customer engagement background, Linda Hayes assists investors, owners, and managers as they navigate the nuances of delivering exceptional guest experiences. Showing future owners, the “back of the house” with her hands-on bootcamps and virtual workshops creates a path to ownership. Working together from purchase transitions through defining exit strategies years later establishes long-term relationships based on honest communication and realized results. All properties are unique so let’s identify your goals and create results.
For over 30 years Richard Blum has been a leader in the hospitality industry, specializing in operations and management education and training for independent Inns and restaurants. Driving companies and start-ups to success through effective strategic planning, leadership development, and implementation of best management practices. Business planning and business start-ups Being a part of over 20 business openings or re-grand openings of hospitality properties grossing at least $2 million has given Blum extensive experience in starting and operating a business. Closely collaborating with business owners and directors Blum works to identify weaknesses of their businesses and outline solutions to increase efficiency in marketing management and customer satisfaction. These options are available ● Location research and site selection ● Feasibility studies ● Concept development ● Forecasting and Strategic planning ● Writing and editing business plans ● Construction project management ● Initial “Gorilla” marketing ● Event planning (grand openings, fundraisers, promotional) ● Creating and implementing all operating processes and procedures ● Hiring and training, and operational management ● Customer service training specialist All aspects of a successful start for any business. Our experience allows us to take on these projects and ensure completion at the highest expectation level. Throughout his career, Blum has developed and customized programs for each client. Developing training programs for all areas of the operation. Writing position-specific training manuals and implementing all procedures to ensure flawless execution for the long term. Creating “Train the Trainer” programs to ensure consistent training. Cultivating a culture of excellence and a staff that is always looking to improve customer service and as a business. Leadership, Ownership, and Staff, Training, and Development Just as important to the successful opening, ongoing training and development at all levels of staff (including owners) are essential to the success of any business. We offer the following: ● Develop training programs for all areas of the operation ● Writing position-specific training manuals, and implementing all procedures to ensure flawless execution for the long term ● Creating “Train the Trainer” Programs to ensure consistent training ● Develop a culture of excellence and always look to improve as a business Having all the procedures and processes does not help a business unless there is consistent direction from qualified leadership to perpetuate a culture of excellence. ● Hiring, leading, and coaching General Managers, and their Managers is where we have the largest impact. We teach a hands-on leader a value-based leadership style that will, after training, understand how to motivate and get the best from staff today. ● We offer the creation and implementation of customized Management Training Programs A current project’s scope of work involves a complete business analysis, breaking down each P\L line item to identify gaps or opportunities. We then create and implement the steps to fix each issue at hand. Beginning with restructuring all accounting procedures and budgets, then renegotiating contracts with vendors. The next step involves identifying opportunities to reduce costs and increase revenue. Finally retraining ALL management staff and front-line employees for long-term success and clarification of all processes and procedures is important. Business Operations / Business Strategy / Professional Consultant Identifying the key performance indicators for the business, then creating a step-by-step plan to maximize the business's success. ● Property and business inspection and analysis ● Extensive P/L and accounting experience ● Budgeting and planning ● Inventory control expert ● Up-to-date marketing strategy, with over 20 years of experience ● Very proficient at Change Management Most employers today are seeking team players that are levelheaded under pressure, upbeat, customer-driven, honest, reliable, and dedicated to the success of the company. Along with these qualities, Blum trains key members of the staff - a value-based style of leadership that gets things done and done correctly for long-term success. Rick’s background was very helpful for past involvement with AIHP’s 2019 Knowledge Sharing Summit and Marketplace where he was part of the planning committee as the chairperson for the back of the house and guest experience paths of content. While Rick does have his own company, he works with Linda Hayes under ijk Partners when needed. At the 2020 Association of Lodging Professionals’ Annual Conference, they co-presented a session about compensation packages for salaried, hourly, and seasonal staff.
Alfred Aday is the CTO and Principal Engineer at ThinkReservations, a leading hospitality platform in the US that helps businesses increase revenue and save time. As an Electrical and Computer Engineer from companies like Amazon, IBM and Lockheed Martin, Alfred now has over 10 years of experience in the lodging industry as CTO of ThinkReservations. Alfred is a powerhouse resource for the industry. He has worked with thousands of lodging businesses which give him the ability to anticipate and understand the needs of the industry and the solutions that will take it to the next level.
Dan acquired the Inn in 2014 after years of participating in PAII as an aspiring innkeeper. He’s held membership since in PAII, AIHP & ALP and utilized Allied partners to source and value business opportunities prior to ownership and since to improve his business. Dan has improved his Inn’s annual revenue by over 125% since he acquired it and his Inn has garnered press attention from Condé Nast Traveler, Huffington Post, USA Today, Fodor’s, Sunset Magazine and others. Prior to becoming a business owner and innkeeper Dan was a global executive Human Resources and Organizational Development practitioner for 30 years. He developed business processes for a quickly growing global service organization in areas of organizational communication, management & team effectiveness, large systems change, leadership development, HR, OD, and gained global broad range business experience. In 2009, Dan was awarded the Chief Learning Officer Award from CLO magazine which honors the best organizations for learning and development. He has presented at numerous business and human resources conferences in areas of business management, service delivery, quality improvement, leadership development and employee engagement and satisfaction. Dan has presented yield management topics at innkeeping conferences for several years. Dan’s partner David is a Jungian Psychoanalyst in private practice and a professional musician with little interest in the Inn business…which works well for both of them!
Jeff joined the rezStream team in 2014 with over 17 years of sales experience and was one of the original employees at Munsenware selling the Guest Tracker property management software. He has held various other sales positions, including starting and running his own business. Jeff has been with rezStream since 2014 and in that time, has become a leading educator in the hospitality industry. Not only does he run monthly webinars for clients and general public education, but he also travels across the U.S. and presents as a featured speaker at many lodging and hospitality conferences. His background and experience immersed in the industry have given him a wide variety of expertise ranging from property management software and tips to increase your booking engine reservations, to strategies for updating and refreshing the look of your website, to the latest tricks in internet marketing and search engine optimization.
Doug Bagnasco is the co-owner of the Devonfield Inn located in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts. He and his partner, Jim DeBlasi, own and operate 15 units, an 11 room bed & breakfast and a four unit Carriage House. Doug grew up in the hospitality industry in a family operated resort motel located in Montauk, Long Island, New York. He graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality Management from Florida International University in Miami, Florida. Doug then spent the next 12 years managing hotels in Corporate America, relocating from city to city before deciding to take a 20 plus year hiatus. He then spent the next 20 years working as an SBA Loan Officer focused on originating small business loans. In May, 2018, Doug & Jim both decided to leave the chaotic corporate world and became B&B owners and their new adventure began.
Eliot has had careers as an off-shore tug boat captain in the Merchant Marine, Inn and Restaurant owner in the Hudson River Valley, and as a Consultant and Business Broker for unique lodging properties nationwide. These varied career paths have provided him with leadership skills that require empathy, objective negotiation skills, and a commitment to service and hospitality. He understands the importance of impartiality and confidentiality and believes the key to getting clients results is an in-depth understanding of their objectives. With decades of experience in the lodging industry, Eliot understands the demands and rewards of the innkeeping business intimately, especially the importance of inn finances and the varied investment goals of his clients. Whether you are contemplating selling your inn or considering the purchase of a bed and breakfast inn or other lodging property, Eliot Dalton will provide the professional service you deserve.
Starting in 2010, I have worked as a commercial and SBA lender for a community bank that was later acquired by a Federal Credit Union. During that time, we have helped hundreds of aspiring and existing small business owners achieve their dreams and business needs. We focus on common sense lending and can provide direct lending services through the SBA program in nearly every state. Prior to working as a lender, I spent 13 years owning a small real estate and insurance company in Ohio so I am very familiar with what it takes to own and run a small business. I have personally experienced the joys and pains associated with controlling your own destiny as the owner and this provides me with a unique understanding of just how hard and how rewarding owning your own business can be.
Since 2011, Matt has become an expert in hospitality website design. With close to two decades of grass-roots marketing expericence, Matt pivoted to web design in 2009 and specializes in branding & expanding client reach. He was always an expert at creating great-looking websites, but was frustrated when they weren't getting found that well on Google. This lead Matt down the path of in-depth understanding of Google’s many tools to help his clients websites rank higher based on Google's endless ranking signals used in their always-changing algorithms. Now, after creating thousands of hospitality websites with effective SEO, Matt has built a cutting edge data-driven model using digital relationship marketing, so his clients won’t have to worry if their marketing efforts align with today’s digital trends. Matt's passion and mission is to help grow his client's business with a higher ROI by saving them time, money, and increasing their bookings.
I have been an Innsitter since September of 2004 when I was a guest at a B&B. At breakfast I told the owner that if she ever wanted to take a vacation I would come and run her B&B in her absence. She took me up on my offer and I haven't lost my love or passion for the business. I have been a member of the Interim Innkeepers Network since 2009 and have served as Treasurer since 2017. I joined ALP as a member last year. I have been to many of the national conferences over the years representing the Interim Innkeepers Network - there is always lots to learn and I like spreading the word about our group.
Monica R. Edwards is the Innkeeper and Co-Owner of Morehead Manor Bed and Breakfast in Durham, NC. She and her husband Daniel purchased a historic 1910 Colonial Revival styled Mansion in 1997 and converted it into a 5-bedroom bed and breakfast that also hosts events. Monica has been active in and held many positions in professional Innkeeping and tourism-related organizations for over 25 years. She served as President of the North Carolina state association and currently heads the African American Association of Innkeepers International (AAAII). Monica also works with students in the hospitality programs at NCCU and Durham Technical Community college. The Inn has won numerous local and national awards most recently recognized as the “Best Place to Stay” in the 2022 Durham Magazine’s 12th Annual Best of Durham Contest. In her spare time Monica enjoys trying new recipes, entertaining friends, reading, traveling, and spoiling her grandson Xavier and her Siamese cats.
Along with her husband Ken, Paula Chenchar Hanus is the owner and Innkeeper of Larch Pine Inn Bed & Breakfast in the small resort town of Clear Lake, Iowa. They bought the Inn in January of 2018 and in the Spring of 2021 (just 3 short years later) they were awarded Outstanding Lodging Property in a small market by the Iowa Tourism Office. While this was a huge surprise, and they are most certainly honored, Hanus believes it was no accident. Hanus has a Master of Fine Arts degree in design with extensive research on how to build a strong brand and decades of experience building strong brands in her roles as executive director, creative marketing director, brand consultant, art director and more. Today she considers herself both an innkeeper and an experience designer; which means she gives very careful consideration to the moments of engagement between the guest and the brand experience and the ideas, emotions and memories these moments create. Her academic research was on the Oprah brand and how those behind the Oprah brand were able to create more meaningful connections with their audience. These types of connections are harder to create, take more time and cost more money, but in the end, they are more valuable to the customer and turn customers into brand advocates. She is often asked to speak at conferences, workshops and other events about her research and how she has applied this research to industry. She has been married to her husband Ken for decades and is the mother of three grown boys.
Brittany is a General Manager for a boutique hotel collection in Michigan and serves on the Select Registry Board of Directors. Brittany is also the owner of So You Want to Elope, an elopement planning company specializing in adventure elopements.
Anna likes to say she is just a cheese salesman’s daughter. But what that really means is that she learned what she knows from following, watching and experiencing. The joy of talking with others, making and serving meals and using cheese to make everything. Hospitality is in her blood and it is an intricate part of what makes her happy no matter the career path. Anna has practiced interior design for many years, led teams in facilities management as a project manager, and is currently the design-build director for a general contractor in Windsor, CO. But what she is truly passionate about is creating opportunities to help others showcase their hospitality business in the best light. Her need for a creative outlet while managing a family, a career and looking at what the next adventure holds has brought her to food photography.She believes life is a journey, that we are constantly learning new skills, honing life’s passions and looking to find joy in all aspects of our lives. It is never too late to learn something new.
Laura Moskwa began her hospitality career in 2017 with the purchase of The Bradley Inn and Restaurant. Her love for cooking and entertaining plus the constant drive to be busy made owning an inn and restaurant a good fit. Prior to becoming an inn and restaurant owner, Laura worked for over 30 years in the retirement plan industry in various capacities, with the last 8 years focused on business best practices for the small business owner. Being involved in both local and national industry organizations has always been important to Laura, which has included volunteering for committees as well as sitting on their boards.
Marco co-owns and operates the Candleberry Inn on Cape Cod with his partner, Angelo. After purchasing the bed & breakfast in 2016, they immediately applied their strong business sense to reinvigorate the inn’s performance and infrastructure. With a sharp focus on continuously elevating the guest experience, the inn’s results advanced in a short time as proven through its increased occupancy, ADR, financial results, and various impressive national and global awards. In 2022 the Candleberry Inn was ranked #1 in the US and #2 in the world for Best Bed & Breakfast / Inn by TripAdvisor. Prior to innkeeping, Marco worked 20+ years in corporate finance and marketing roles in New York City. He began his career in public accounting as an auditor and became a CPA. Later he was hired for client-side financial management roles in the advertising industry where he led global finance and marketing operations. Marco holds an MBA in Marketing and worked on global brands including Procter & Gamble, Marriott, InterContinental Hotel Group, GSK, Eli Lilly, and Cisco Systems, to name a few. Marco is also a licensed broker and consultant with InnAdvisors, where he assists Carol Edmondson, Principal Consultant, in advising innkeepers throughout the various stages of their hospitality and businessowner journeys. He works closely with clients buying the best hospitality properties to meet their goals, and with seller clients who are seeking to optimize their return as they prepare to sell their businesses.
Mark and Debbie, like many innkeepers before them, left careers in the corporate world in 2018 to follow their dream to buy and run a bed and breakfast. They took the existing 8-room Sheridan House Inn, near the Grand Canyon, from a place for a "quick stay on the way to somewhere" to a luxury destination for food and romance at their oasis in the pines of northern Arizona. Having never run a business, nor had any direct hospitality experience, this husband and wife utilized their individual skill sets to double the revenue of the property in 3 years. Mark, an admittedly proud "foodie" who guests say could be a Michelin-star chef, now creates dinners as well as breakfasts while also handling all maintenance and design of upgrades, utilizing his engineer career skills. Debbie uses her passion for decorating, holidays, creating special ambiance, marketing, and making sure that every guest gets a completely personalized experience at their inn. Guests may come to see the Grand Canyon, but they come back time and again for the experience. Their success has been recognized as they were chosen to join Select Registry and by the annual Trip Advisor top 10% of hotels rating. They credit their creativity, risk taking, ability to change and adapt, honoring their staff, and a lot of hard work for their accomplishments. Mark (and Debbie) are excited to share what they've learned with others.
Marty Etzel helps small and medium hospitality properties be more successful and profitable. Previously, Marty, with his wife Carmel, owned the Flag House Inn in Annapolis MD for 4 ½ years. During that time, they increased sales 160%, tripled profits, and earned Select Registry designation with 875 reviews for a 4.95/5.0 rating. Marty now works as independent consultant helping other small hospitality properties achieve excellence Previously, Marty worked over 35 years in the corporate world in the chemicals and Tech industry including 14 years at SAP (business software) before embarking on this second career. His background was accounting and marketing, having earned both CPA and MBA, working in various roles such as business unit leader, product manager, positioning & messaging, sales training and helping customers make the business case to buy software. Marty lives in Annapolis MD
Magen prides herself on guest experience. With her background in culinary and hospitality Magen is helping her town, as it becomes the largest restoration project in Texas history, to once again be a wellness tourist destination. Magen helped in the development of Mineral Wells' Welcome Customer Service Training program. Serving on the board of The Texas Bed and Breakfast Association, Magen is the VP of Conventions. The proud owner of Magpie Inn, a chef owned boutique Inn located downtown Mineral Wells. Magen and her husband, Jeremy, also recently launched business number two: Stay Well Property Management, which specializes in short-term rentals in their area. As Mineral Wells continues to grow the goal is to partner with investors and property owners to bring industry knowledge, create consistency, and master guest experience in the lodging industry throughout their town.
I was in printing as a digital manager for 30 years, then one day decided to purchase a bed and breakfast in Hershey, PA. I had never stayed in one, and knew nothing about the business, but thought I could do this. I started 1825 Inn with no bookings on the books and turned it into a very viable business with 8 rooms. After 13 years of owning 1825 Inn Bed and Breakfast, I decided to sell it and purchase an old farmhouse in Milton, DE, and created a 5-room bed and breakfast, Mansion Farm Inn. Owning the bed and breakfast has allowed me to travel to many spots in Europe and all over the USA, which he loves to do. I joined Acorn Marketing in 2018 after 13 years of learning everything I could about the industry with being a customer of Acorn that I join Lisa's team. I enjoy helping other Bed and Breakfast across the US in marketing to increase their bottom line. In these times there is so much to learn and create on a daily basis. I am getting ready to start my 19th year in the business and enjoy what I do!
Kathy is a dynamic and engaging small business owner of the Main Street Inn (Built 1885) located in historic Parkville, Missouri. A classically trained architect, Kathy brings a unique and holistic “Design Thinking” approach to the guest experience and her business operations. Kathy is currently serving as the Board President of Bed & Breakfast Inns of Missouri (BBIM), helping the Member Inns remain competitive in the changing hospitality landscape. Outside of her business pursuits, Kathy enjoys trekking and climbing mountains with her husband, Jason. She recently completed the Himalayan expedition in the Khumbu region of Nepal.
Liz Brown is the VP of Customer Delivery for rezStream. Liz plays a vital role in overseeing the delivery of software, digital marketing, and website design services to customers. Prior to her managerial position, Liz worked within rezStream’s Digital Services department as a Digital Marketing Account Manager where she utilized her expertise in client management, search engine optimization, pay-per-click management, and online marketing strategies and tactics. In her role, Liz brings her 11 years of experience to benefit the teams through strategy development, effective leadership skills, continued education on emerging trends, and ensuring every client receives impeccable service. Liz is invited to speak at many industry conferences and provides professional guidance and insight on best practices in the hotel industry. Liz has lived in Denver for the last 14 years. She enjoys traveling with her family, taking her dog, Teddy, on walks, and exploring new things with her daughter.
Jim is the Owner and Innkeeper of the Inn on Lake Granbury in Texas offering exceptional romantic getaways and a relaxing venue for group retreats. The Inn is the only lodging on Lake Granbury that has 15 luxurious rooms (many with lake views), a saltwater pool with waterfall, and a conference facility for groups – all within a short 2.5 block walk to the downtown square for shopping and dining.
How to become a “Needs Anticipation Specialist.” Hear from seasoned lodging professionals about the tools and techniques they use to discover why guests are visiting, how they leverage automation tools to capture information, and then utilize that information to enhance a guest’s future visit. Thus giving them the best experience at your property and creating ‘raving fans’!
GA4 is right around the corner for many small businesses. Knowing the differences between the comfort of Universal Analytics and the new look and feel of GA4 can be intimidating. We’ll go over the key points you’ll need to be prepared for the next steps.
The independent segment of the hospitality industry is built on the foundation of crafting experiences for guests from the initial point of contact with your brand by website, social media post, or by word of mouth. This session draws on the experience of three hospitality owner/operators in different regions of the US who have worked to craft and market their own brand of hospitality and engaged their guests as a constant feedback loop to ensure their success in the long term. We will help attendees to understand how to view complaints as gifts and discuss the importance of ongoing education and personal experience as owners to inform our relevance as operators in a constantly evolving market. Every decision you make as a hospitality owner or operator should be prefaced by the impact on your current and future guests. Begin with experience, follow up with personalized service and satisfied guests will follow.
Just like staging a home in residential real estate, you need to set the stage for your guests’ experience – and it starts long before they arrive at your property. In this introductory session, our panelists will discuss how to set yourself up for success for your first photoshoot. From arranging decor to budget expectations to putting your investment into action on your website, we’ll help you get the ball rolling on this critical piece of your marketing.
The lodging industry has continued to evolve. It’s more important than ever to analyze the way you are operating your business, pricing your rooms, and the way you are interacting with your guests. At ThinkReservations, we have worked with thousands of businesses and created a professional and comprehensive platform that will enable you to take advantage of these new opportunities. Join Alfred Aday, the CTO and Principal Engineer of ThinkReservations, as he walks you through features that will change your business. This is guaranteed to be a presentation you will not want to miss!
Learn from a panel of certified Google Hotel Ads providers about the benefits, strategies, technical requirements, and cost of including Google Hotel Ads as part of your property’s marketing plan. Understand the differences between Google Pay Per Click, Google Hotel Ads, and Google FBL. See how Google Hotel Ads compare to traditional online travel agency platforms.
This session will discuss architectural and landscape lighting techniques for the hospitality industry. We will explore why lighting is essential for a fantastic guest experience
Details and Takeaways Coming Soon
This session will discuss how to utilize Google Ads and Google Hotel Ads paid search channels to drive traffic and bookings to your website. Attendees will learn how to determine return on ad spend (ROAS), set budgets, and analyze the performance of their ads through reporting tools. Tips on optimizing campaigns and identifying underperforming ads will also be covered. The session aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of effectively using these channels to maximize return on investment.
Details and Takeaways Coming Soon
Details and Takeaways Coming Soon
Details and Takeaways Coming Soon
This will be one of the most timely and best attended sessions of the conference. On July 1st, with the sunsetting of Universal Analytics, many property owners are going to be faced with a new way to review their marketing initiatives and site traffic. With the newness of GA4, there are bound to be a number of questions. This session will be a deeper dive into GA4 following a presentation by Pat McCauley the day before which reviewed the differences between Universal Analytics and GA4 at the beginner level.
Takeaways Coming Soon
Maximize your profitability and success as a new property owner with a practical guide to forecasting tools for your property. Learn how to find, interpret and apply key techniques and tools to optimize your room rates, staffing, and more.
Guests want the moon with a side of charcuterie and wine, and you want to give it to them. But is it what they really want? Are you able to really provide it? The final panel in the three-part series on creating satisfied guests will focus on strategies to create amazing experiences for your guests. We’ll talk tools and ideas but also how to evaluate the effectiveness of these experiences, for both the guest and your business.
The hospitality industry has been moving toward “a la carte pricing” for several years. From cruise ships to hotel chains, guests are now able to personalize their experience more than ever as business models try to balance staffing and inflation issues with customer preferences to create win-win experiences for their guests.
The session will focus on why and how to effectively develop, implement and market this product. We will share a real life success story using this pricing strategy detailing how it created an even better guest experience while at the same time increased profitability.
This 60 minute interactive session is a round table forum helping experienced hospitality professionals to recognize, develop and use financial benchmarks for their business. Work with successful hospitality property owner/operators and industry consultants to get your questions answered. Understand tools and techniques that are available to you going forward. Focus in the areas you want to master to advance your business to the next level. Hear what others may be doing that could benefit your business.
This session will dive deep financially into the ROI calculations of photography and renovations. Budgets need to include the alterations to websites, marketing firms, and calculating how often owners should re-do their images, especially if there is rebranding or renovation of the property.
Takeaways Coming Soon
This 45 minute discussion will leave attendees with a list of exciting free products they can use to help manage and market their business. There will be some emphasis on the cost savings by comparing the “paid” versions to the “free/open source” options.
Takeaways Coming Soon
Have you felt that it is time to kick your breakfast offering up a notch but are coming up with nothing? Maybe you are just in a breakfast rut and are looking for something different to make it fun again? This session will cover important considerations with regard to your current as well as your future menu. The presenters will also discuss how and why their enhanced breakfast offerings have been so well received.
Buckle up, Buttercup, this is the Instagram foundations+ session you will regret missing. From strategy to stunts to slick tricks, we will lay it all out for you in easy terms using our favorite KISS method.
Will McQueen will lead the panel in a roundtable discussion about the various tech products that can be useful in the lodging industry to enhance the guest experience. The panelists will exchange ideas on how some products may work in various lodging settings with regard to different markets and demographics.
This 45 minute roundtable session will enlighten lodging owners with the possibility of dramatically increasing revenues by simply looking to add a few new demographics into their marketing schemes.
Takeaways Coming Soon
This 45 minute session will cover tech tools available to owners to automate some time consuming facets of their lodging business. Unlike our other session, “Smart Tech for Your Guests”, this session will focus on the benefits of technology that owners can embrace to automate their business.
Takeaways Coming Soon
Sarah Gazi is an accomplished and dynamic association executive with over 20 years of diverse experience managing scientific, trade, and medical associations of varying sizes, budgets, and geographies. A proven change agent, Sarah believes in every association’s mission is to make something better by uniting causes, professions, and people. The chance to work with members with such diverse backgrounds and passion for what they do first drew Sarah to work with ALP. Sarah is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) and a graduate of Rowan University, where she graduated with a B.S. in Biology. She has also received the recognition of IOM from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Institute for Organization Management program.
Montana native Nancy Malikie and her husband specialized their small Bed and Breakfast/boutique Inn for couples. Purchasing an abandoned 1903 Victorian Mansion, they renovated it into a high end Luxury Bed and Breakfast and Event Center. The Mansion renovations catered to an atmosphere of years past with the touches and comforts for today’s traveler. Offering full concierge services, assisting guests with experience enhancements, creating stress-free travel all while increasing revenue for the business. Full wedding coordination was included in the services allowing for the Bride and Groom to host their special day stress free, filling a niche, and increasing revenue of the small boutique property. Changing the off season of the property to include private dinner parties for up to 40 guests on the main floor allowed for year round consistent revenue. During the course of operations they have specialized in -Designing and creating website and Brand, including marketing, blogging, and social media platforms. -Creating and working within a budget for business as well as renovation projects. -Designing and creating English garden event space, including personal handling and maintenance of grounds. -Quickbooks and Property Management software, utilizing reports to review booking pace and implementing Yield management. -Event and Wedding coordination, including creating floral arrangements, set up design, customizing menus/preparing/plating/serving up to 150 person events. After selling, Nancy and her husband created MTN Professionals, a specialized hospitality and consultation service. With vast knowledge and experience in the day to day operations of a small lodging property they are excited to assist clients in expanding/improving current operations or assisting the new owners to evaluate and incorporate their personal style. Working well with others, levelheaded under pressure, positive attitudes, full of integrity, reliable, customer driven and dedicated to making the property the best it can be, culminate perfectly to assist clients in whatever needs they may have.
Patrick is co-owner of The Keystone Inn along with his two siblings – Christine and Stephen. Patrick comes from an Information Systems and Program Management background and received his MBA from Johns Hopkins University. He has spent the past decade as Senior Director of Program Management at PayPal. He is a published author and educator, and has shared his business acumen with business leaders around the world. In addition, he mentors executives and leaders-in-training as a way of paying it forward. Patrick has used the last two years focused on the business/financial aspects of the Inn, implementing methods and financial reporting that provide actionable insights for the Inn. He looks forward to sharing his stories and listening to others' adventures in this role. Patrick has a passion for live theater and music; and is also a self-taught pianist.
This session in the Beginner session leading up to an Intermediate and Advance session on the subject. Attendees will leave with a solid understanding and the positive impacts which can come from use of the concepts.
Takeaways Coming Soon
This session will enlighten attendees with technology, software, and online presence they will need to propel their business and profits forward.
Takeaways Coming Soon
This session will walk new owners through the most common coverages and terminology of an insurance policy enabling the owner to methodically evaluate their current policy and determine if changes should be considered.
What separates the successful businesses from the rest? It’s not ideas or money, it’s the attitude that they bring to the table, every day. Do you have what it takes to succeed? It’s there, inside of you.
There never seem to be enough hours in a day, so what can you do? The good news is that there’s a lot that you can and should be doing, you just need a little help, a little perspective or maybe a big nudge. Attend this session to recharge your inner power to reach greater heights, personally and professionally. You’ll leave feeling empowered to take the actions necessary to move your business forward.
This session will guide prospective hospitality owners to understanding the insurance needed for hospitality venues.
Meta Business Suite provides property owners with a management tool for both Instagram and Facebook. We’ll look at how to use the platform to post content to both IG and FB at the same time, schedule content – posts, reels, carousels, boost posts, and review Insights into how the content is performing. All this is done from one spot, accessed right from your Facebook Page, saving you precious time.
This session will give audience members a taste of the importance social media plays in today’s marketing schemes.
Join us for a comprehensive overview of email marketing best practices. In this session, we’ll cover everything you need to know to get started with email marketing, including how to develop a strategy, build a targeted email list, and track the results of your campaigns. Whether you’re new to email marketing or looking to improve your existing efforts, this session is a must-attend for anyone looking to maximize the effectiveness of their email marketing efforts.
We don’t know what we don’t know, and data security’s constantly emerging threats can feel a lot like playing an unending game of whack-a-mole. This session will finally explain – in plain English – how to secure your data to prevent costly breaches, protect your Personally Identifiable Information (PII), and prevent ransomware; and what you can do right now to protect your business, customers, family and yourself from hackers, phishers, extortionists, and other cyber miscreants.
The information presented applies to and is valuable for everyone at all levels. Even many CEOs of major corporations don’t really understand the true level of risk exposure to the pervasive data security threats facing them, because no one can be an expert at everything. Attendees will learn the best practices you can easily employ to protect your data and by extension your business and personal life from hacker incursions.
Questions from the audience are encouraged throughout this interactive session and attendees leave with a newfound understanding of cybersecurity and associated best practices.
Hearing the term “influencer” brings up a lot of different definitions in the hospitality marketplace, but most aren’t sure how to navigate these opportunities — until now. We’ll explore why and how influencer programs work, details on how to best leverage these partnerships, which performance metrics actually matter and how to measure a return on investment (ROI). There will also be a live Q&A session where the Visit Phoenix Media Relations team will field questions from attendees using real-life examples that cater directly to your business.
How do you take advantage of the information and sources from this new owner conference to create and execute a plan for success when you return to your property? Carol and Linda will lead a discussion and offer suggestions to attendees as they reflect on their takeaways from two days of sessions.
If you’re just selling heads in beds, you’re missing an opportunity and you’re missing out on profits. Before guests come to stay with you, or celebrate their occasion at your property, they already need a bed to sleep in or event space, but what else do they want? What else do you offer?
A deep dive into making the most of your precious time and talent while developing your staff and constantly finding ways to wow your guests in the face of change.
Google Travel is dominating our industry, but so many property owners don’t even realize there is a difference between Search and Travel. Search is where you find doctors, plumbers and lawyers, but only the beginning of a guest finding your inn. Traditional SEO (Search Engine Optimization) no longer has the impact for location specific searches as it did before Google Travel emerged on the scene. You don’t want to miss out, so please plan to join us for this information packed session!
How to organize digital marketing efforts to optimize business goals is the focus of this session. Attendees will be shown how to develop a content calendar consisting of essential communication formats such as articles and blogs, email newsletters, and social media posts. The session will also share which mediums are best suited for each of these communication types and how the various mediums work together in delivering the marketing message. The goal of these content communications is to optimize direct guest bookings, achieved through increased website traffic and engagement with prospective and return guests. Details like editorial frequency and dates, types of content topics, and most effective mediums will be covered.
A detailed look at creating a working plan that takes you from business concept/purchase to your ultimate goal.
Find out who and what you need to create a plan that creates excitement for potential investors/lenders and at the same time keeps you on track to meet your goals.
This session covers the usage of the website imagery and images used in a lodging owner’s marketing plans. The timing of the images (seasonal marketing), the location of the images (OTA’s, website, social media, blogs, etc.), and using the images in online profiles. Attendees then need to be aware of how to protect their images from re-usage by unauthorized parties.
This session will help new owners decide whether or not it makes sense to continue the legacy of a lodging property or to rebrand or a mix of both.
Rebranding may encompass parts of the business or it may be an entire rebranding of the property, top to bottom. We will review the keys steps both in the digital world and the physical side of the business
This session will cover the importance and challenge of both physical and digital ADA accessibility and potential liability. Join two industry experts and advocates on what you need to know to reduce ADA liability and the first B&B owner charged with an ADA 3rd party OTA lawsuit. Expert knowledge and experience will be shared.
In this session, we will cover key strategies for successful marketing and pricing for new owners in the hospitality industry. You will learn how to set the right price for your property using variable and dynamic pricing to account for occupancy, seasonality, and your competition. Doug and Nathan will also discuss the importance of having a strong online presence through a well-designed website, and the role of high-quality photos in attracting new guests. Additionally, we will cover the value of a good property management system in streamlining operations and the benefits of seeking out professional marketing assistance as a new business owner. By the end of this session, you will have a clear understanding of how to effectively market and price your property to drive revenue and maximize profitability.
Are you operating under the radar? Learn the many legal issues in the lodging industry you may encounter every day without being aware.
When it comes to award-winning property management software, efficiency counts. That’s why ResNexus is an all-in-one solution, helping thousands of hospitality businesses balance all the plates that come with the job, from online bookings and revenue management to powerful reporting and digital marketing. Plus, ResNexus provides industry-leading customer support that brings all these important tools together with a personalized and caring approach that is dedicated to helping your business grow.
This session will explore the commitment, joys and challenges of owning your own lodging property. No two independent lodging properties are the same. This preliminary session will touch on day to day operations, industry margins and marketing to allow you to see the different types of lodging business models there are. Combined with your unique skill sets, this will help you to determine the right lodging business model for yourself.
This session will provide some thoughts, both pros and cons on the approach to buying an existing Inn, building an Inn from scratch or converting a property to a commercial Inn.
How To effectively manage the Due Diligence Process and mitigate downside risks, protect your interests, and verify the stability and profitability of the purchase of a hospitality property.
This session will help attendees understand the workings of a hospitality property’s P&L and how it can be used to value a property one may be interested in purchasing.
Takeaways Coming Soon
This session will give an opportunity for aspiring innkeepers to gain a better understanding of how to prepare and what options they might have as they navigate financing with their purchase.
This session will help prospective buyers understand the intricacies involved with the transition of the intellectual property of a lodging business. These are valuable assets and are critical to ensuring your marketing success.
Learn why marketing is important to your new business and how to evaluate prospective property readiness and required investment. Get a strategy tool kit that includes brand evaluation, identifying marketing goals, developing a marketing plan and approach, selecting marketing and technical tools. We will also explore how to put a value on a marketing program for a target property.
This session will explain the processes involved if a new owner has intentions of changing the branding of the property they are looking to purchase.
Aspiring Lodging Professionals will be given the opportunity to expand their property search by realizing they can change the branding once they purchase. The physical structure, location, and size may be the perfect fit, but the prospective owners may feel the property is antiquated. This is not a reason to give up. It’s a reason to be excited about the possibilities. It will be your session which can show real examples of properties who have changed direction with parts or all of the business.
This session will help prospective buyers focus on the F&B aspects of their potential new business – for good or for bad.