Three Inside-Out Mobile Approaches to Increasing Guest Satisfaction

Smarter Team, Happier Guest

By Scott Schaedle Founder, Quore | December 31, 2017

At the heart of the hospitality industry's tech-driven evolution, one truth remains: customer service reigns. The challenge for hotels, then, becomes navigating the current of mobile technology to keep up with the demands of today's modern traveler while bridging the gap between hotel management, staff and guests - all in the name of white-glove hospitality.

Increasing guest satisfaction doesn't start with the guest, but rather the internal players that shape the guest experience, whether they're guest-facing or not. Today's travelers operate in real-time, so your teams should too. Here are three ways to take an inside-out approach to guest satisfaction.

1. Mobilize Your Team

Today nearly 60 percent of travelers are opting to book hotel rooms on their smart phones, and 81 percent of travelers are turning to online reviews to dictate the decisions they make. So how can hotels accommodate this new breed of traveler? Instead of shying away from embracing new technology, hospitality brands should aim to accelerate their own internal operations by investing in a user-friendly, cloud-based software solution that benefits the brand as a whole. By operating under the same digital umbrella, hotel staff can communicate guest requests and work orders more efficiently, while holding each other accountable for day-to-day tasks.

Take Joe Grieco, vice president of operations and development for over 20 Gibson Hotel Management properties. Before implementing a mobile solution for his internal teams, Joe wanted to gauge the overall performance of his properties and monitor guest-related issues to make informed decisions on behalf of the brand. But inundated with paper tickets, logbooks and five-inch binders, he found it virtually impossible to keep tabs on multiple sites at once, much less identify systemic trends or recurring issues. Fast forward a few years, and Grieco doesn't know how he did his job before mobilizing his staff with smart hospitality technology. Today, he's able to automatically track patterns at each property to piece together a bigger picture of the brand in ways that he was never able to do before.

"The sink that stops up constantly or the guest that complains about a funny smell from their room never gets rolled up or assembled into a story. I'm now able to have that bird's eye view and identify these repetitions," said Grieco. "From a corporate standpoint, mobile technology is our biggest asset to getting a pulse on one property or the whole group. Consolidating everything in one place not only gives me the whole picture, but also allows me to make smarter decisions."

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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.