In the digital age, it may feel as though all your branding and guest engagement efforts should be focused on your hotel’s online presence.
However, winning over customers via the web is just the first step to building a loyal, long-lasting relationship with them.
The tougher challenge lies ahead because grabbing guest attention and keeping them satisfied while they’re staying at your independent hotel is tricky - especially in this time of ever-rising expectations.
With that in mind, here are a few tips on how to inspire your hotel staff and make sure they represent your brand effectively and engage with guests positively.
Adopt a consistent approach
The best way to solidify your hotel’s brand image and make it memorable for guests is to ensure that all staff are on the same page when it comes to customer service.
Consistency is the key to success, so provide equal training opportunities in guest engagement for front of house employees and those working behind-the-scenes.
From housekeeping to the accounts team, every member of staff should provide an equivalent level of approachability and support when interacting with customers.
To further develop a unified, company-wide strategy for guest engagement, ask your staff to examine every obstacle from the customer’s perspective (both online and within the premises).
Having empathy for guests will make it easier to find ways to overcome whatever problems they encounter during the booking process or questions they might have during their stay.
Obviously, it’s important to keep the hotel’s best interests in mind, but encouraging flexible thinking and a desire to ‘put yourself in the guest’s shoes’ will empower staff and boost their engagement skills.
From the moment they book a room to the instant they check out after their stay, it pays to communicate with guests in a way that feels unique and tailored to them as individuals.
It’s straightforward enough to ensure that the personal touch is applied automatically to emails and other digital correspondence, but what about once customers arrive on site?
Providing front desk staff with information that can help them greet guests and deal with their needs effectively is vital.
A bespoke approach, which takes into account any specific requests (rather than forcing them to repeat details they already provided when booking) will go a long way to earning their respect and can be achieved by integrating your PMS with a customer relationship management system.
It may feel a little draconian, but creating a dress code for staff will make a world of difference when it comes to building a brand that’s consistent, approachable and professional.
It doesn’t need to be especially rigid, but if you can provide uniforms or create fixed guidelines for what’s acceptable, you’ll present your business in a much more cohesive way.
Affordability and practicality are of course important when it comes to clothing, so don’t go overboard with designs or rush to implement a uniform that won’t let hotel employees do their jobs effectively. Ask for their input before ordering, and you’ll reduce the chances of a mass revolt!
If raising guest engagement at your independent hotel is something you’re keen to achieve, there isn’t a tried-and-tested path to take. A mixture of the ideas above or those ‘borrowed’ from hotels at which you’ve stayed will most likely be needed.
Whatever approach you choose to raise staff guest engagement, you’ll almost certainly need to tweak your tactics over time in order to see what works and what doesn’t before you settle on the perfect approach.
Welcome Anywhere has over 30 years of experience in helping independent hoteliers deliver guests an unforgettable experience with its simple property management system that controls your daily activities. The best part - it’s all cloud hosted! We develop scalable solutions for your property such as PMS, a Booking Engine and Channel Manager. Our team has a wealth of experience in the hospitality industry and we serve you to better serve your guests.
Call us today at + 44 (0) 33 0100 1090, or email us at email@example.com. We will be happy to walk you through Welcome Anywhere’s all-in-one solution for your property management needs.