Creative Lodging Solutions (CLS) is a company whose leadership team saw an opportunity in the midst of economic collapse. That opportunity paid off, and now CLS is a successful and ever-expanding company that is repeatedly named one of the best places to work in Kentucky.
Tabatha Conway, marketing director at CLS, recalls that when the economy started going bad a few years ago, the CLS team realized that many companies would want to outsource their lodging arrangements.
“They could outsource the tasks of finding and arranging lodging for their business travelers, and reallocate those internal resources to do something else,” she says. “Our customers enjoy internal savings, and that’s why we’ve been successful.”
Conway explains that CLS is in an emerging industry, and although the company has competition, no one does what CLS does in exactly the way CLS does it. In fact, CLS has even developed its own proprietary software that stores client information such as travel needs and travel policies, including spending limits.
More clients, more communication challenges
As CLS grew, staying in touch with its many clients became more challenging.
“In the beginning, we had nothing formal in place,” Conway says. “We relied on our account managers to keep clients up to date about new products or features we were rolling out.”
Despite its personal touch, this form of communication became problematic as CLS’ customer base grew. C-level executives often make the decision to work with CLS, but they’re not the ones calling and making travel reservations. Therefore, these executives were in danger of being left out of the loop regarding important CLS updates. Plus, some of CLS’ larger clients are companies that include hundreds of travelers; it was impossible for account managers to keep up with all of them.
When the CLS team realized they needed an email newsletter to keep everyone connected, their Internet marketing and advertising company, AngelVision, recommended they get in touch with its marketing partner, Proven Systems Corp. Their bimonthly newsletter, Lodging Connection, is a success.
“Everyone gets a consistent message,” Conway says. “For instance, when we rolled out our WebGenesis software, some people were already using it, and for others it was new. Our newsletter allowed us to explain the software’s value to the customers and why they should use it. And by talking about the software in more than one newsletter issue, we made sure everyone had a chance to learn about it.”
“Easy and painless”
So how does CLS feel about their overall experience with Proven Systems?
“Proven Systems has been great to work with and has made the process extremely easy and painless,” Conway says. “With everything else I’m doing, it’s great to know that the Proven Systems team is coming up with ideas that get readers to open the newsletter and click through. Proven Systems also provides an outside perspective of our business that helps us communicate more effectively with our customers.”
As part of a successful, growing business, Conway has a piece of advice for other B2B companies looking to be flexible and grow in a changing environment: “Our goals are always evolving and changing as outside factors influence them,” she says. “Recognize changes that are coming, like the bad economy, so you can go ahead and tweak your product or service to really provide what your customers want or need.”