11 Ways Your Hotel Experience Could Change Because of Mobile Technology

The future of the world traveler and hotelier

By Frank I. Wolfe CEO, Hospitality Financial & Technology Professionals | January 08, 2012

In such a short amount of time, mobile technology has changed the way that the world does just about everything. There’s no doubt about it; smart mobile devices are dictating how we live our lives. With these mobile devices in our hands, and media and information up in The Cloud, there are limitless possibilities for access.

This is a game-changing development for the hospitality industry.

It is opening a variety of delivery mechanisms for personal guest services that are affordable, efficient and easy to use. Not only is it now easier to travel the world, it is also easier for hotels to operate and could change how guests interact with a hotel.

World traveling made easy thanks to my mobile devices

As CEO of Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), a global professional association, I have first-hand experience as a world traveler. In fact, in the last six months, I have traveled to countries that speak Mandarin, German, French and Spanish. For the record, I only speak English with a smidgen of Spanish.

During these trips, I have used my mobile devices to communicate very effectively with taxi drivers, front desk personnel, housekeepers, concierge and food service staff using my translator on my mobile device.
I watched movies and television programs in English, read my local newspaper online, had the opportunity (through a hotel’s French Facebook page) to join an “after work group” and even made dinner reservations in Chinese. In one country, my French speaking taxi driver got lost, and much to her relief, I had both a map “app” and the translator so we made it to the airport in plenty of time for my flight.

Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Laurie Friedman
Michael Blake
Scott  Watson
Tony  Heung
Jason Brown
Emily Venugopal
Emily Venugopal
Andy Ellicott
Fifi Arisandi
Holly Zoba
Tim Peter
Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.