How Hotel Chains Can Utilize Comparison Data

By Richard D. Hanks Chairman and President, Mindshare Technologies | October 28, 2008

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) reported this year that customer satisfaction within the hotel industry declined over five percent from last year. The industry's final score? A not so impressive 71 out of 100.

That would also be known as a "C minus," if we were still school. Sure, it's a passing grade, but below average, and far below what the industry is capable of.

In other words, there is a lot to learn out there - about lodging customers and how to serve them. What if the industry as a whole could earn at least a 90? What if a single chain could score that high? Vacancies would be scarce, revenues would soar, and that chain would gain the reputation as the place to stay.

The truth is, it doesn't really take a great deal of effort. In fact, your customers are saying it all the time. The trick is how to hear them. This article discusses how best to go about obtaining actionable feedback from your guests, how it can help you adn what the potential benefits could be.

Getting to Know Your Customers

The secret to not just getting a passing grade, but jumping to an "A+" is in listening to your customers. Like teachers, they have all the information you need to succeed, but you need to listen closely, take notes, and take action on what you've learned.

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Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.