In recent years, the hotel industry has faced tremendous competition from tech savvy start-ups. Airnbnb, with it's easy to use interface, great selection, excellent prices, and personal feel has forced industry leaders to adapt. Today's consumers demand flexible and personable digital experiences. This means more than just storing credit card information and providing attractive pictures of rooms: it means bringing the visceral hotel experience to the digital realm.
Luckily, for hotels that get this right, monetary rewards will follow. Recognize that your hotel is just a part of your guest's experience. If their vacation plans or work activities are disappointing, that negativity can flow back to your hotel. This can mean unfairly negative reviews, early checkouts, and/or loss of a customer for life.
Read below for three quick tips on how hotels can upgrade their digital presence to enhance their customer's experience.
1) Offer small or semi-private events to guests with similar outlooks and interests. If you're collecting useful (but not intrusive) data from your guests when they make reservations, you can make their experience more enjoyable and perhaps more productive by providing opportunities for guests to mingle. This doesn't need to be overly complicated. Just add a field to your check-in form for profession and leave it optional. If you have two architects from Seattle and San Francisco in town for business, offer each a free drink and snack at the bar during happy hour to get them in an area to meet. Most people enjoy unforced social interactions with peers and with some data analysis and subtlety you can facilitate that.
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2) Make it easy for your guests to experience the best of your area Although every smart phone owner has all of the world's information at their fingertips, it doesn't mean he or she is actually using it. Plus, no one knows your town better than you do. As such, create compelling offerings of activities and packages that occur outside of the hotel. By all means collect referral fees for you services, but more importantly, but putting your town's best foot forward your guests will associate their good time with your property.
If your website is using a CMS like Drupal, it can be easy for any member of your staff to create compelling content. Don't feel like building it yourself, we are here to help
3) Use SMS/MMS to connect with customers Customers routinely get text messages from their dentists or doctors reminding them of upcoming appointments and the like. While customers do not enjoy receiving marketing promotions via text, helpful information without any hint of selling will be welcomed. For example, if you know a guest is arriving at 10pm on a weekday, you can schedule an automatic text message for their plane's landing time stating that you know it's late and that your guest may not have had dinner. Ask if the hotel can grab anything for the guest, all he or she needs to do is reply and let you know. Obviously some tact here is necessary, but given that hotels routinely collect phone numbers and are able to infer travel information from clients, the potential value of automated messaging is high.
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In summary, tech savvy hotels that use digital products to improve their customer's experience will win. Rootstack has the technical chops and the creativity that your hotel needs.