Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Horwell

Vanessa Horwell

Founder & Chief Visibility Officer, ThinkInk & TravelInk'd

Vanessa Horwell is the founder and Chief Visibility Officer of ThinkInk & TravelInk’d, a public relations and visibility firm that shuns press releases in favor of storytelling. She has spent the past 18 years working with companies in the US, UK and Europe, developing successful campaigns and strategies for their brands. She founded ThinkInk in 2004, after being fed up with PR agencies that offered mediocre results for big fees. Today, Ms. Horwell is a senior level strategist who works with companies in North America, EMEA and Asia-Pac in developing winning media campaigns, building relationships with influencers, and improving visibility through a unique style of public relations. She also has an entrepreneurial spirit that comes from having raised capital for start-ups, and having grown her own businesses. Ms. Horwell is also recognized in the field of mobile marketing through her ongoing column in the mobile industry resource, Mobile Marketer, the Director of PR for the Heartland Mobile Council (HMC) in North America, and being named to the Mobile Women to Watch 2010 for her contributions to mobile advertising, marketing and media in 2010. Whether she works in mobile, travel or technology, Ms. Horwell’s purpose is to help build reputations and relationships for the company’s clients – with media, potential customers and partners; to tell her clients’ stories to the world, and to make them visible where it counts most. She uses her almost two decades of industry insight to create PR campaigns with a purpose, creating awareness, instilling beliefs, changing behaviors and motivating actions that translate into support for ThinkInk’s clients.

Ms. Horwell can be contacted at 305-749-5342 or vanessa@thinkinkpr.com

Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.