How AccorHotels Uses Data to Enhance the Customer Journey
By Emanuel Baudart Global Chief Customer Officer, Accor Hotels | June 25, 2017
Where we are Today
Undoubtedly, the hotel and resort industry was built around customer satisfaction and experience. A lot of hoteliers have gotten lost in the battle of direct bookings and racing to fill every room in the hotel. But no traveler books a cozy guest room, a transformative spa treatment, or a colorful signature cocktail created from local ingredients unless they believe they’re going to be pleased. If an hotelier can’t fulfill their customers’ desires the first time around, they likely won’t get a second chance.
Historically, hoteliers focused on purely transactional relationships with their guests. The product took precedence over the client, and the selling of a room was more important than creating an experience. Now that transactional model has shifted to a relational model in which customers want to be recognized and catered to, their desires anticipated and fulfilled, and their patronage duly rewarded.
Customer Relationships in the Digital Age
Digital technology has intensified customer relationships for better and for worse. Everything has a call to action whether it be instructions to ‘download the app’ or ‘text to book.’ Today’s consumers are more widely connected to the businesses they patronize – and to each other – than ever before. With the tap of a keypad, guests can share their experiences and opinions – in retrospect and in real time – with a constantly growing audience across the Internet and social media. As a result, like the digital landscape itself, the possibilities for hoteliers to create and nurture those relationships are endless.
In this new and continually developing environment, hoteliers must ensure that they are able to provide a service that matches their customers’ expectations whatever the motivation was for choosing a property in the first place. What is true in other industries also applies to hospitality: properly managing customer feedback is now vital to success.
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