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B2B: Pets Would Save Your Business

The MT Conferences section did not involve the reporting or the editorial staff of The Moscow Times.

Elena Belashova
General Manager
Crowne Plaza Moscow World Trade Centre

The current economic and geopolitical situation is creating really tough conditions for Russian hoteliers compared to the same period of last year. Competition keeps on rising and, in the meantime, the volume of business travel has started to decline, as well as the volume of leisure travelers. Hotels have to come up with tons of new ideas to stay afloat — what was enough to be on top several months ago is not working now. Hoteliers copy each other, take surveys and are active on the Internet. They develop new loyalty incentives and offer guests lots of complimentary services, take part in different award competitions to create value for their brand and product.

At Crowne Plaza Moscow WTC , we have also experienced some consequences of the crisis. Besides great improvement in attracting new corporate companies, airline crews and inbound tour operators, we thought of creating something extraordinary and attractive for our individual guests as well.

After thorough research of the market we found out that Moscow accommodates several huge and even more local Russian pet shows. The question arose, together with the answer — where should guests be accommodated with pets like cats or huge dogs like Rottweilers? Most Moscow hotels allow no pets at all, or just tiny dogs. Even excluding dog or cat events there are so many people all over the world who are eager to travel but are unable to because there is no one to leave a pet with — and there we might come with help and an answer for these potential guests — welcome to Crowne Plaza Moscow! We have a green area surrounding our hotel, we could support pets with unlimited drinking water, we have a large parking lot and could support a high security level. We are an ideal place for animals and with boast high brand standards for our guests.

Before making decisions it is vital to understand whether the idea will work out or not. It could also happen that the cost of implementation of an idea will be higher than the return from the project. In the end it turned out that accommodating pets with their owners would not cost much more than it does now. As the last step for our peace of minds we created a list of rules for our guests and their owners to follow. We also introduced a Facebook campaign that attracted hundreds of "Likes" and many comments. The result made up our mind.

Now I can rightly say that 'Loving Your Pets' and welcoming them as favorite guests creates a positive image both for the product and the brand. Care about what your guests care about and they will be grateful. Be eager to create a hotel that all kinds of guests could love.

The MT Conferences section did not involve the reporting or the editorial staff of The Moscow Times.

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