Hotel Concierges: Capitalizing on The Mobile Web
By Ryan Day Founding Partner, The Portal Live, LLC | July 01, 2012
The way traveler's access information and services has changed dramatically since the introduction of the mobile web. We live in a world where people are often more comfortable asking their computer for advice then actually having to speak with a real person. Today's consumers are less willing to take the word of strangers as fact. Guests want to make their own decisions by evaluating their options through independent research. This trend has penetrated the hospitality industry, having profound implications for the hotel concierge.
How can concierges adapt to the new demands of a digital dependent traveler where personal interaction is often the lesser-preferred means of communicating? How does a concierge communicate their added value to guests and gain the level of trust necessary for them to do their jobs in a market seething with skepticism and abundant in conflicting opinions? We'll address these issues in detail.
The hotel concierge is quite possibly the most valuable, yet underutilized resource available to guests. All guests know that their hotel concierge can make dining recommendations and provide area maps. What is commonly overlooked is that the concierge is the most connected person in the hotel and is happy to be your personal fixer. They get paid to make sure you get what you're looking for! So why don't all guests use this invaluable resource?
Often guests have the misconception that the concierge is simply an intermediary, an unnecessary step to acquire what they need. Besides, if they need to find a restaurant they have the Internet...right? Sure, anyone can go online and find a restaurant. But the Internet won't get you the best table in the house or pull a favor from the maitre d' for priority seating.
In many ways modern travelers are more independent than ever before. Wanting to make their own decisions on what they think fits their likes based on personal research. Ironically they're becoming increasingly dependent on technology for the answers. Technology that can't replace the first hand knowledge, insider contacts, and personal relationships concierges spend years acquiring.