4 Effective Ways Hotels Can Utilize Telephone Marketing Opportunities

By Mark Williamson CEO, PHMG | September 16, 2018

The customer is always right. And nowhere more so than in the hospitality industry where customer expectations are extremely high.

From remembering guest names to offering a glass of champagne on arrival, hoteliers have to be well-versed in the art of customer service and the small touches that make a big difference. 

These extras can really make a difference to customer satisfaction, retention, recommendation and ultimately revenue.

But it's not just the face-to-face experience where customers should be made to feel appreciated.  We live in a virtual and digital world which has transformed the customer journey beyond recognition. The telephone is often your company's first interaction with potential customers and should be treated as instrumental in converting leads into sales.

Whether they're calling to book a room or enquire about the price of a treatment in the hotel spa, a customer is immediately forging that all-important first impression of your brand. And we all know that first impressions last. And bad first impressions can destroy brands. Especially under the immediate and far–reaching spotlight of social media.

This becomes increasingly pertinent in the light of recent independent research which revealed that 59 percent of Americans will never buy from a company again if their first call isn't handled to expectations. 

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Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.