Last week, Go Moment won the most innovative solution award at the Innov8 event at the Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA 2019) conference in LA. We had eight minutes. And seven other contenders.
Any win energizes a team and the Go Moment team is no exception. We celebrate. Occasionally, we get on a boat, and explore new destinations together.
The win at HEDNA, however, was more energizing than others. Why?
- Our first in 2019. We’re getting started!
- The timing. We’re expanding our product offering beyond guest service and hence just being at a hotel distribution focused conference helped us immensely.
- The all-volunteer team from companies like MGM, Wyndham, Booking.com, and other large hospitality brands was inspiring to work alongside. My special thanks to Sarah Fults (MGM), Inder Banga (Wyndham), Ian Ackland (Booking.com) – your energy to volunteer beyond your busy day-to-day schedules is inspiring!
What did we do right? How did we win this? In my opinion, we got a few things right.
Let me start with the most direct explanation. During our time on stage, we presented our read on the industry, opting for an educational, information-sharing tone instead of a direct product pitch. This resonated with the audience since they were able to map this information to their own experience. By the end of our presentation, we had several people agreeing with us on how disruptive the confluence of technologies (AI, IoT, and Voice) we discussed would be in the guest experience.
Now for the indirect, deeper explanation. We laid the groundwork for this win several months – perhaps a year even – before the conference. Having consistently worked on our network and our media coverage, we were on NBC, Inc.com, Circa, The Economist and several others. I am convinced that this web of visibility helped us secure an invitation to pitch in the first place.
- Subtlety wins. Direct selling rarely does anymore.
- Find the do-ers and align with them. Be where they are likely to see.
Finally, a trend that I see emerging.
Highly specialized solutions around payment seemed to be popular at HEDNA. I am going to bet on a blockchain-type payments infrastructure layer hitting the industry in the coming years, possibly something like Winding Tree.
If you were at HEDNA, and have a different bet, let me know! Actually, even if you weren’t at HEDNA, and have a 2019 prediction for the industry, I’d love to hear and learn.