Where do you find information when you’re on vacation?

I was in a strange land at a strange hotel for a few days last week, looking to do not-so-strange things like play a round of golf and eat at a good Italian restaurant.

Where would a stranger find out the best places to do these things?

Two places, actually.

1 – I asked the “regulars and locals” and listened as word-of-mouth directly affected my decision-making for what I chose to do, where I chose to do it, and who got my cash for it.

2 – I went straight to my concierge.

Every time I tried to talk to my C-man, there was a line about 5 people deep (which is actually where I got the most word-of-mouth action, because we were all talking about what we wanted to do, what we had done, and who got our cash for it).

When I got to the front of the line and asked my question-du-jour, I felt like I was talking to an Authority figure, an expert on entertainment, and listened intently.

And I took his advice every time.

If your business is 65% tourists (like ours), you better have a strategy on how to get the hundreds of concierges on your side.

Because they have the keys to the customer’s castle . . . and their wallets, too.


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  • At the StarQuest Dance competition this year we created the “Studio Concierge Program”. When studios contact us, we represent our own competition and of course persuade them to come to our event. In our industry no one else is providing a service like this…I’m sure next year I will see copy cats, but by that time we hope to have created loyalty and word of mouth.

  • DHicton says:

    When I was in Los Angeles for the Jeopardy Tournament of Champions, they put us up at the Intercontinental, and I relied heavily on this nice woman who was the concierge there. She knew where EVERYTHING was, and she was one of the most pleasant and polite people I ever met. Concierges are a tremendously valuable resource to draw on.

  • When I’m in New York, Las Vegas or any kind of wine country, I rely heavily on the hotel channel which suggests things to do and places to go. I definitely wouldn’t have seen Spring Awakenings 3 years ago if not for that channel. I also love Yelp. However, though I’ve stayed in several expensive hotels, I NEVER ask the concierge about anything. I’m just not comfortable w/ it — m/b b/c I’m still a starving artist at heart. So though I agree that a concierge can be useful, I think they’re a little dinosaury and that producers should probably pay more attention to their online presence than getting more concierges on their side.

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