As experts in digital marketing and online reputation (ORM) in this article we feature 3 International Best Practices for Hotel Chains
Every day, as we open the door to our office, we push forward with strength and enthusiasm, ready to face a new day full of new developments. Because devoting ourselves to digital marketing means learning something new every day and tackling challenges, which ultimately are thrilling battles for us and keep us sharp, focused and on our toes!
And I think you would all agree with us .... even going a month or two without learning something new in this profession ... puts us on the downhill slope towards digital obsolescence! We inject a very important element into the exercise of finding out the latest innovations, especially in the sectors in which we specialise: we submerge ourselves entirely, searching for the most successful cases or best practices.
Today we are sharing the initiatives taken by 3 hotel chains which, for various reasons, have had a very positive impact on their digital reputation. Would you like to know why? Here we have 3 very different cases!
THE LIBRARY HOTEL COLLECTION
This hotel chain was one of the first to recognise the importance online opinions were beginning to have in terms of digital reputation and revenue. They were pioneers in analysing opinions daily and have a very efficient system for implementing the points raised by their clients, enabling them to improve hotel services, through daily meetings and reviews. Working over the years to reduce the gap between expectations and reality has resulted in all their hotels (at an international level as well) having "top" reputation indexes. For instance, in New York, a city that is highly competitive as regards hotels, they have been ranked in the Top 10 by TripAdvisor for several years.
It is important to remember the route an internet user usually follows when seeking to book a hotel stay online. At first, the user comes across a hotel Landing, an OTA, a meta-search engine... They check the offers, perhaps browse the website of the hotel in question to learn more about its philosophy, rooms, features, etc ... And in over 50% (in some countries up to 80%) of the time, he or she will want to review the opinions left by previous guests.
In order to avoid the user from looking for opinions external to their website and with the aim of promoting direct sales, Kempinsky was among the first to introduce (very appropriately) an opinion widget within the hotel services and room characteristics section. This, without a doubt, increases the percentage of online shoppers who browse and search for hotels, and keeps them within their own website environment. Furthermore, it gives them control over their sales message, impacting their reputation positively as they align reality and overall expectancy of the experiences offered at their hotels.
The lesson we learn from Sheraton in terms of reputation is not so much in working methodology (The Library Hotels) or applied technology (Kempinski), but rather an original way in which to manage the hotel's reputation, focusing on service quality and how to deal with any "small problems" encountered in the day-to-day running of the hotel.
At one of this well-known chain’s hotels, a young boy forgot his cuddly toy, which he slept with every night. The family got in touch with the hotel "despairing" and asked for someone to get back to them urgently. After going through the logistics, the hotel knew that it would be impossible to meet the timing requested by the clients (the child wanted to have his stuffed animal to take to bed that very same night...) and they were able to foresee the impact that this could potentially have on the hotel's reputation. So, they decided to react and came up with an ingenious solution to the problem. They took the soft toy and literally toured the most prominent areas of the hotel, taking very endearing pictures of the stuffed animal in different scenarios. They then packaged it for delivery and sent it to the client's home. They immediately wrote a letter to the boy, explaining that his teddy bear was looking forward to getting home, but that he had decided to stay for another couple of days at the hotel to have some "exciting adventures" to tell him about when he got home. Hour after hour, day after day, the young boy was sent pictures of his favourite teddy bear having fun and he was happy right up to the day and moment when his beloved dream companion arrived safely home... His parents, of course, contributed that day with their response, positively affecting the hotel's online reputation.