Is the price right?
You can learn how to do social media. You can learn how to make your website better. You can learn how to take better photos.
We talk about needing to get more direct bookings. We talk about needing more off-peak business. We talk about visitors, how we feel, what we're doing.
But we don't talk about prices or making money. I've rarely seen anything that helps tourism and hospitality businesses think about the prices they charge, how to increase their profits, how to make more money, or even how to earn the same without working so hard.
I'm not sure why this is? Is it because it's not the 'done thing' to talk about money? Because we're still shy about discussing it? Or just don't know what to think about? Or we associate money-talk with maths, which we don't think we can do?
What would you do if you had more money? Most people can talk at length on this topic. We have plenty of ideas how to spend money. But earning it? We're more likely to joke about robbing a bank than discuss how we might increase our incomes. Isn't that a little odd?
While some run tourism businesses simply to make a living, many do enjoy what they do. But they also work hard and if they earned more, they could enjoy more free time. Getting the balance right of earning money and enjoying free time isn't easy.
Others run tourism businesses as part of farm diversification or because they happen to have a spare building or room. Money might not be their prime motivator but even so, additional income could usually be put to good use, whether used directly or diverted to charitable purposes.
I don't think we spend enough time thinking and talking about pricing - how to set prices, how to maximise income, or how to present prices to make them attractive. Many use discounts as a marketing tactic or bemoan the power of online travel agents and their excessive commission levels. Isn't it time to also focus on how we can generate more income with less effort?