Connecting Dots: Managed Network Services Enhance Guest Experience and Boost Bottom Line

By David Hogan Executive Director of Major Accounts, Heartland Payment Systems | May 05, 2013

It goes without saying that network connectivity is critically important for hotels. After all, your operations - and your guest experience - rely on it. Affecting everything from your property management system (PMS) and payments processing to high speed Internet access (HSIA) and cellular service, your network is the central nervous system of your property. But as advances in technology impose increasing demands on your infrastructure, managing your network and ensuring connectivity is more challenging than ever.

That's in large part because as a society, we are more connected than ever. Consumer adoption and use of Internet-ready devices like smartphones and tablets in recent years has been nothing less than explosive. At the same time, there has been a mass migration of business technologies from offline to online and cloud environments. As these environmental factors converge, I would venture to say that network congestion is significantly higher now than it was just one year ago.

There's no question that we have entered a new technological era. So why are so many hoteliers still using the same network platforms and service providers that they always have? It's a costly mistake that we see all too frequently in various industries, including hospitality. As we connect the dots between a hotel's network, guest experience and profitability, you'll see just how the benefits of managed network services far outweigh the capital investment.

Keeping Your Guests Connected

Think about it. After a long day of travelling, your guests settle into their rooms. What's the first thing they do? Before they unpack, or even sit down, they try to get online. Whether it's business travelers anxiously connecting their laptops to respond to the day's emails, or vacationers using their tablets to find information on nearby attractions, connecting to the Internet is top of mind.

Offering Wi-Fi is no longer a differentiator but an expectation. And if your guests are not able to connect seamlessly to your network, you'll know about it. While nine times out of 10 connectivity issues stem from user error, they're an inconvenience nonetheless. The front desk staff may have the Wi-Fi password but be limited in their troubleshooting capabilities. They don't necessarily know the ins and outs of your network, nor should they. After all, you have IT professionals or partners for that task. But if they're anything like the IT pros who work in hotels that I know, they're probably extremely busy all the time.

Choose a Social Network!

The social network you are looking for is not available.


Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Michael Prifti
Paul Feeney
Frank Meek
Jacqueline Clarke
Marc Glasser
Bob Carr
Vanessa Horwell
Dawn Walzak
Fred Bendaña
Edward Donaldson
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.