Hotel guest engagement is not just about sending the right message to the right people at the right time.
It means keeping your brand in front of potential guests on a regular basis by adding value to your relationship.
We're going to talk about 5 mistakes hoteliers are making in respect to hotel guest engagement and what you can do to avoid it.
How can you attract more guests to your hotel?
1. Don’t just sell to your guests - communicate with them
If you open your email, you’ll see lots of emails trying to convince you to buy stuff.
Is it engaging? You will likely be attracted to the email that is pushing something you’re already interested in.
The company who has sent this offer has built customer engagement by adding value to the relationship.
This value makes your life easier.
To build positive guest engagement and retain loyal guests, you need to communicate with them by sending information or offers which resonate.
Often when you try to sell to guests, you send the same offer to the whole database.
What will happen?
You will send irrelevant offers to some potential guests and there is no chance of a conversion.
Engaging emails not only inform guests, but they help to retain them.
Customer who purchase products through email spend 138% more than those that don’t receive email offers.
Tip: Don’t send the same email to all guests who have different interests and needs.
Use your database to learn about your audience and how to interact with them.
Segment your guests to send personalized offer and messages.
You will retain your current guests by delivering information they care about.
2. Segment guests based on their previous bookings
Booking your hotel is not only the end of a guest journey, it is the start of another one.
Now you should ask yourself what services makes the best experience of your hotel for your guests?
E-Commerce websites like Amazon do the exactly that.
They suggest products you might like based on your previous purchase history.
Tip: guide your guests directly to the best experience they can have with you based on their own preferences.
Create segmentation of your guest database based on factors they have in common.
After that, send emails retargeting their specific needs at the right time.
Another way of segmentation might be based on the travel demographic of your guests. For example, business, family vacation, local guests (within driving distance of the hotel) or solo travelers.
There are many ways of segmenting, but the important factor is always to tailor your message to your guests’ needs.
For instance, sending an email with a message “if you like this (their previous booking), you might also like this” shows your audience that you pay attention to their interests and needs.
You are also showing them that you value them, listen to them and that you provide services that are valuable to them.
3. Build a continuously evolving relationship with your guests
Your efforts to engage with guests plays a crucial role in brand loyalty.
Ask guests to sign up for your newsletter, provide reviews on TripAdvisor and like your pictures and videos on social media.
It’s remarkable how many people prefer to be brand loyal rather than purchase a new brand.
This will only happen when you nurture an ongoing relationship with them in order to earn a second date.
Tip: Start communicating and build long-term relationships with your email database, online reviews and social media followers.
There are a lot of campaigns that you can run through different channels to wow your guests and entice them back in - birthday campaigns and we miss you campaigns to name but two.
Target local guests who can drive on to your hotel with high value promotions with messages that appeal to them.
Concentrate on bringing back your loyal guests.
4. Be present at the right time, not all the time
Being consistent in adding value helps you to be top of mind when people need something you offer.
This means you will be the first hotel that comes to mind when people are ready to book.
Look to engage guests continuously by sending your promotions at the right time not by overwhelming them with content all the time.
Tip: stay relevant to every step of the customer journey.
Whether it's sending pre-arrival upsells, property welcome messages, weekly guest newsletters or operational announcements be aware of what your guests want and when they want it.
Personalised experience is now more important for guests than ever.
5. Showcase what makes your hotel unique
If you build and highlight experiences which make your hotel unique, it’s difficult for others to replicate it.
But don't forget!
If you don’t spread the word, nobody will know. When someone books a stay with you, they may want to sample the unique experience your brand offers beforehand.
Or after they have booked, be kept up to date with the treats which await them.
Tip: share some of the guest experiences which can only be found at your hotel.
Share how people are doing things in in your hotel which you hadn't thought of. For instance, record a quick Instagram video of your executive chef making one of the top dishes at your hotel's restaurant.
Let people connect with your brand and your property if you want to build long term trust and advocacy.
You will have great guest engagement if you build strong relationships. These are about belonging to your guests’ tribes and adding value which enriches their lives and delivers enchanting experiences.