Account Executive – Lodging Career Opportunities

Duties: Oversees a client’s entire advertising account as well as serves as a liaison between the client and the advertising agency   

Alternate Title(s): Account Manager     

Employment Prospects: Fair   

Advancement Prospects: Fair   

Best Geographical Location(s): All, with the most opportunities in large cities with many advertising agencies such as New York, Chicago, Boston, and Los Angeles   

Education and Training—Bachelor’s degree; fields such as advertising, public relations, marketing, sales, business, journalism, or communications helpful   
Experience—Several years of advertising industry experience   
Special Skills and Personality Traits—Excellent communication and interpersonal skills; good business, sales, and negotiation skills; creativity and writing skills; ability to juggle multiple tasks at once

Senior Account Executive   
Account Executive   
Assistant Account Executive

Position Description
The success of hotels, resorts, restaurants, casinos, and other hospitality businesses is determined by advertising. It is the medium by which the company showcases its offerings to the general public in order for sales to occur. Hotels and other businesses spend a lot of money to promote their brand and show what makes them unique. Account Executives oversee advertising campaigns for their hospitality clients. They work to manage their clients’ accounts, ensuring that communication between the client and the agency is maintained and that objectives are met.

Account Executives spread the word about their hospitality clients. They devise strategies such as where to place advertisements, how frequently they should appear, and what their message should accomplish. Account Executives collaborate with other members of the advertising agency team, such as the creative and media departments, to convey the client’s message. They also decide where the ads will appear, such as in newspapers, magazines, billboards, television, radio, direct mail, and the Internet.

Whether a restaurant chain wants to promote its new healthy options or a luxury hotel wants customers to know about its new full-service spa, an advertising campaign is critical. Account Executives for hospitality-specific agencies understand how to target the most effective channels for reaching their target demographic. They begin by meeting with clients to gain a better understanding of their strategies and ideas. They also discuss their budget. Account Executives and clients work together to create a strategy as well as the types of placements, publicity, and media that are desired.

It is the Account Executive’s responsibility to manage the relationship between the client and the agency (particularly the creative department), and they frequently manage multiple accounts at the same time. They are in charge of ensuring that their desired campaign is carried out. Publicity, promotions, market research, and public relations are all part of the campaign strategy. Additionally, the best timing and placement for the ads must be determined. Television ads may be worthwhile for some clients, while Internet or print ads may be more appropriate for others. The type of audience they want to attract—families, upscale older travellers, single partygoers—will influence all aspects of the campaign.   

Account Executives collaborate with the other agency personnel in charge of these various components after developing the campaign. The media planners advise on how to spend the budget, including which geographic areas to target the most heavily as well as the best mediums. Media buyers ensure that the advertisements run as planned. The creative team creates a sample ad for client approval, including written copy, slogans, taglines, artwork, music, video, and special effects. Creative directors oversee the filming of a commercial or the photography for print advertisements. The public relations team is in charge of getting the word out about their client to the media as well as the brand image, while market research helps determine which populations may respond best to advertisements.

Additional duties may include:
– conducting research on the type of ads that will attract consumers
– attracting new clients
– recommending strategies for sales
– managing pitches for the client
– presenting concepts to the client for approval
– checking the status of clients’ jobs and communicating with them

Some of the unique aspects of hospitality advertising include informing the public about these properties, their amenities, new locations or features, and special attractions or discounts. Account Executives must focus on client satisfaction and relationship building. They meet with their client on a regular basis to ensure that the campaign is on track. An Account Executive at a midsize advertising agency may typically manage four distinct clients at the same time. Account Executives keep track of their working hours so that clients are billed correctly. Long hours may be required, as well as travel to meet with clients, visit properties, and scope markets and placements. 

Employment Prospects   
Positions in the advertising industry are expected to grow at a moderate rate. As more hotels, restaurants, resorts, and casinos open, the demand for specialised Account Executives to promote these properties will increase. Competition will be fierce, and the best opportunities will go to experienced Account Executives. A background in both advertising and hospitality can help you stand out.

Advancement Prospects   
Account Executives have numerous opportunities for advancement. They can advance through their organisations to become senior account executives, account supervisors, and eventually vice presidents. They can also choose to direct advertising for a hotel, resort, casino, or restaurant in-house. In executive positions, they may work for individual properties or chains. In addition, some Account Executives may want to start their own advertising agencies that cater to hospitality clients. 

Education and Training   
A bachelor’s degree is required to work in advertising. Advertising, public relations, marketing, sales, business, journalism, or communications are all common and useful majors. Some Account Executives also have graduate degrees, which can help them advance in their careers. Others may have studied hospitality management as an undergraduate or graduate student and have work experience in the field. While not required, this can help you gain credibility with your clients. 

Experience, Skills, and Personality Traits   
Before reaching this level, Account Executives typically have at least three years of experience in an advertising agency. To work with clients and as part of their agency team, they must have strong communication and interpersonal skills. Furthermore, excellent business, sales, and negotiation skills assist them in managing budgets and projects, while creativity and writing skills assist them in making recommendations about goals and directions. Account Executives must be able to multitask because they manage accounts for multiple clients. Billing spreadsheets, as well as design or editing work, require computer literacy.