2023 Education Topics

Opening General Session

Say Yes!

Keynote Speaker, Christine Trippi, The Wise Pineapple
This year’s keynote speaker will teach attendees about the art of saying YES in only four simple steps, and how to become a Wise Pineapple™ by being confident, empowered, and leading from the heart. InnSpire attendees will learn to:

  • Be Confident: Learn the secret sauce to always saying YES, delivering the ultimate guest experience, and setting up your frontline to love and own their day!
  • Be Empowered: Reach your goals and dreams with the Four Levels of Commitment.
  • Lead from the Heart: Rekindle your passion to serve with a higher purpose to change the world one YES at a time. 

About Christine Tripp:

Christine Trippi is an award-winning hospitality leader who began her hotel career at the age of 17 as a van driver/laundry girl, and her specialty has become moving red hotels to GREEN! She has spent more than 30 years working in hotel operations for companies such as Marriott, Hilton, Crown Plaza, and Courtyard by Marriott, where she was named General Manager of the Year. As the founder of The Wise Pineapple LLC, Christine inspires and helps leaders and organizations to Be Confident, Be Empowered, and Lead from the Heart—achieving Sweet Results! She has written a book titled,  YES is the Answer. Christine believes that four Simple Steps is all it takes to deliver legendary service and build a thriving team culture. success in the hospitality industry—by taking attendees through the simple steps of responding positively while developing strong relationships. Along the way, she reviews examples that cover all aspects of work and family life, with opportunities to test your new skills in the. The best part is that you’ll learn how you can change the world, one Yes at a time! Learn more at https://www.thewisepineapple.com.

Educational Workshops

Exploring and Improving the Guest Journey
Presented by Richard Aday, CEO & Principal Engineer, ThinkReservations
Chris Taylor, owner and CEO of ADA Compliance Consultants Inc. will educate innkeepers, not scare them, on the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). He will review how it affects you as a business/property owner. He will explain how to do a brief self-analysis addressing typical problem areas, exceptions, and older properties that don’t meet ADA standards. Plus, he will dispel the myths of “grandfather clauses” and the assumption that California and Federal codes are one in the same. He will also address how to protect your inn against “drive by” ADA lawsuits and take advantage of tax credits and deductions for performing ADA upgrades.

The ADA – Are you compliant?
Presented by Chris Taylor, Owner and CEO, ADA Compliance Consultants, Inc.
Chris Taylor, owner and CEO of ADA Compliance Consultants Inc. will educate innkeepers, not scare them, on the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). He will review how it affects you as a business/property owner. He will explain how to do a brief self-analysis addressing typical problem areas, exceptions, and older properties that don’t meet ADA standards. Plus, he will dispel the myths of “grandfather clauses” and the assumption that California and Federal codes are one in the same. He will also address how to protect your inn against “drive by” ADA lawsuits and take advantage of tax credits and deductions for performing ADA upgrades.

How to Leverage Storytelling into Your Marketing
Presented by Brandon Flint, Founder, Story Directive and Beginning/Aspiring Innkeeper
This session explains what makes a great story and how stories can help you in your marketing effort. You will learn what types of stories work best for hotel marketing and how do get your stories in front of potential customers. You will also learn how to use video and how to utilize it in conjunction with storytelling to maximize the viewer’s experience.

Public Relations Strategies for a Digital World
Panel Moderated by Ranee Ruble-Dotts, Founder and Creative Director, Paper Moon Creative
This lively panel will explore how the rise of digital publishing, social media, and influencers has become a P.R. strategy game-changer for boutique hotels and B&Bs. Moving beyond traditional glossy magazines and newspapers, consumer travel decisions are increasingly influenced by a broad, ever-changing spectrum of digital media sources. A panel of professional travel journalists and influencers will share best practices for working with travel media to reach target audiences online. We’ll cover trends, pitching tips, formulating agreements, managing expectations, and how to vet requests from individuals who claim to be influencers but are not.  

How to Minimize Your Taxes with Your Real Estate Investment
Presented by Geraldine Serrano-Specialty Tax Consultant, Veritax Advisors
Every real estate investor should know about the tax strategy cost segregation. It’s a strategy that can dramatically accelerate depreciation expense and lower tax bills! Depreciation is a non-cash expense, which means you don’t have to spend money to get the tax deduction. The problem is that all real property depreciates over long periods of time – up to 39 years, giving the investor only a tiny bit of depreciation expense every year. Cost segregation dramatically accelerates depreciation expense now. The average commercial property owner can depreciate between 20% and 30% of the cost of the property! Cost segregation works on all kinds of real property – whether acquired through a 1031 exchange, a new purchase, new construction, or an inherited property. You can even do cost segregation on buildings that have already been depreciating for up to 20 years! 

Hospitality Performance Overview: Direct focus on California and Smaller Independent Properties
Chase Oeser, Regional Sales Manager with STR
Join presenter Chase Oeser, Regional Sales Manager with STR, as he provides an overview of the current State of the Hospitality Market. In this session, he will take you through the hospitality industry’s national performance, the state of California, and smaller property performance in the area. We will also have an opportunity to compare previous years’ performance to gauge the industry’s recovery pre and post-pandemic.

#SocialMediaSuccessStory: How to Win at Social Media Through Authentic Brand Storytelling  
Presented by Sara Beth Ashbaugh, Director of Brand, Communications & Marketing, Woodside Hotels
With the ever-evolving social media trends, platforms, and algorithms, managing your hotel’s social accounts can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be! Now more than ever, your guests are turning to social media to research and plan their travels, seeking an authentic look at your hotel’s guest experience. This session will cover the current landscape of social media and how to share your hotel’s unique brand story in a way that resonates with today’s travelers. We’ll also discuss best practices for managing your hotel’s social media platforms, including tips and tricks to make it easy, stress-free, and fun.

Embracing LGBTQ+ Market
Presented by Cathy O’Connell, Co-Founder, COJ Events
This presentation will guide venue leaders in best practices to welcome LGBTQ+ clients to their venue, either as leisure guests or when these couples are reaching out to plan their wedding or special event. We will take a deep dive into what makes an LGBTQ+ couple feel like they are welcomed and embraced at your venue, including initial client email interaction, verbiage used on communication forms, guest arrival experience, appropriate vocabulary, and how guests are treated at your venue.

California Submarket Trends and Values
Presented by Kathryn Proctor, CHB, President, Lodging Brokers Network
View the ranked data on how California submarkets performed over the last year and what is projected for 2023. Explore how current cap rates and valuation parameters vary across the state, receive the latest update on interest rates, and the implications for your inn’s value. Delve into what California inn buyers are looking for, what is happening within the inn acquisitions market, what buyers expect regarding cash flow and how they are feeling about buying in 2023 and beyond.

How to win with Google Travel
Presented by Lisa Kolb, President & Co-Founder, Acorn Marketing 
Google Travel is overtaking Google Search in the lodging industry. This means you must understand how to navigate the travel world just as you had to navigate Google Search in the past. If you don’t know what Google Travel is, or how it is impacting your bottom line, we invite you to this session where you will learn the ins and outs and how to maximize your visibility beyond traditional search!

Taking Control of your Hotel’s Online Presence
Presented by Stephanie Smith, CEO & Digital Matriarch, Cogwheel Marketing
In this session, you’ll walk out with actionable digital marketing take-aways for your hotel team to implement starting now. The presenter will guide you through the customer journey and cover the basics of how to get more exposure for your hotel. She’ll also provide tips and tricks designed for non-technical people.

Simple Emails that Convert to Sales
Presented by Christine Trippi, The Wise Pineapple
Stop getting ghosted – this session discusses how to follow-up on emails. Are you starting your email with “Thank you for your inquiry” or ending it with “I look forward to hearing from you.” This session will give you tips that will help you get your emails read, replied too, and converted into sales.

CABBI Idiot’s Guide to Selling your Inn
Panelist include: Rakesh Taneja, Owner, Elk Cove Inn & Spa, Marc Kassouf, Group General Manager, Stay Idyllwild, Kathryn Proctor, CHB, President, Lodging Brokers Network and Karen Lynch, Lynch Hospitality Consulting & Former Owner of Inn on Randolph
Did you know that the best time to start thinking about selling your inn is the moment you buy the property? You don’t want to miss this hot topic, whether you’re looking to sell now or 20 years from now. Our distinguished panelists of current and former innkeepers and experts will share their pearls of wisdom on how to prepare to sell your inn, and how to get the most for your investment when you do exit. Each expert will cover topics ranging from different types of exit strategies, preparing your inns for sale, what to expect while you are in escrow, what you need to do before the close of escrow, and the all-important succession planning. We will then open the panel up for Q&A. Come pick the brains of those who have bought and sold inns many times and help set yourself up for a successful sale.

Roundtables (20 minute mini-education session)

1) The Do’s and Don’ts of How to tackle laundry, Pamela Dujmovich Sales Representative, Comphy
Laundry is a big part of running your property efficiently. This roundtable will cover the do’s and don’ts learned over the years. I have a wonderful soap recipe to share and many stain fighters in my arsenal.

2) Stretching Your Dollars with Barter, Rebecca Lucas California Regional Manage, IMS Barter
In a time where inflation is impacting budgets and businesses are short on staff, barter makes more sense than ever. Working within a network gives access to products you use daily, using room nights as payment. Tips and information on the ins and outs of exchanges, direct trade, and emerging alternatives will be covered.

3) Saving Building Owners Millions of Tax Dollars One Building at a Time, Jamie Otto, Executive Director, Cost Segregation Authority
Cost Segregation Authority is your national cost segregation service provider, proudly serving all 50 states. We have helped thousands of property owners reduce their tax liability, increase cash flow, and maximize depreciation benefits. We’ll highlight the recent tax updates as well as strategies to implement cost segregation studies to save building owners thousands on their taxes!

4) Importance of Peer Group Support in Innkeeping, Rakesh Taneja, Owner, Elk Cove Inn & Spa
By sharing their own lived experience and practical guidance, peer support workers help people to develop their own goals, create strategies for self-empowerment. This was tried successfully by Innkeepers group for almost 2 years. Practical experiences will be shared. The guidance and coaching from peers sink in so well as they feel and live like you. They debate and challenge advice is very important and the advice from friends and colleagues has a different level of acceptance.

5) Unlocking Your Direct Booking Outcome, Jeff Hebrink, Customer Success Manager, RezStream
Do you ever wonder what is holding your book direct strategy back? Are you taking advantage of technology? Have you given up on SEO? How are you remaining competitive and with what techniques? Join Jeff Hebrink as he shares seven improvements you should consider implementing at your property in 2023 to unlock OR maintain your full potential in your ability to drive direct bookings.

6) Elopements and how your property will benefit from hosting them, Stephanie McCaffrey, Owner, McCaffrey House Bed & Breakfast
What does it take to hold elopements on your property and how will your property and income benefit from doing them.

More sessions coming soon!