8 best practices when implementing a guest journey in your hotel


As a hotelier, one of your main concerns must be to ensure your guests have a seamless experience

guest journey
Image by BookBoost

throughout their journey. This will reduce frustrations not only for them but also for you, because there will be less complaints and more positive reviews.

In a conversation with Lindemann Hotels and Isabel Cerdeira, Customer Success Manager at Bookboost, we discussed best practices the hotel has implemented to digitalise the guest journey.

If you are curious about knowing how hotel technology can help you grow your business over time and give you a return on investment, keep reading.

1.   Implement a platform where you can get a clean guest database

According to Isabel, the first step is being able to manage your customer data. To efficiently manage it and use it, it is essential to implement a platform or system that can help maintain a clean and organised guest database such as a hospitality CRM. This platform should allow you to store and update guest information accurately, ensuring that data remains consistent and up-to-date.

Read about 5 must-try functions of a CRM and what clean guest data can do for hotel marketers.

2.   Make sure the right message is sent to the right segment

The second point is related to how personalised your approach can be, and for that, segmentation is key. Segmentation plays a vital role in guest journey implementation. By dividing your audience into different segments based on their preferences, past purchase behaviour, or demographic information, you can ensure that tailored messages are delivered to each group.

 

This not only helps in providing relevant and targeted information but also to avoid the amount of spam that a guest can receive, meaning, information that is not relevant for them. Both points help to enhance guest experience.

3.   Simplify the complex data

In Isabel’s experience, effective guest journey implementation requires simplifying complex data for easy interpretation and decision-making. The more you can understand, the better.

On this point, using the right tools will help you to visualise your data in a clear and concise manner so you can analyse it and understand it. With guests’ insights at your fingertips, you can make data-driven decisions instead of relying on your intuition or perception.

4.   Utilise different touchpoints

Another point to keep in mind to provide a seamless and engaging guest journey, is to leverage multiple touchpoints throughout the guest’s lifecycle.

“Hoteliers need to be more proactive with their communication and using automation you can automate without losing the human touch”, advised Isabel.

One message-fits-all is not the best approach. Instead of that, automated campaigns can be designed to provide relevant information before arrival and after check-out, ensuring guests receive timely and personalised communication.

Learn about 5 triggers to automate hotel marketing communications.

5.   Automate all the steps and make it easier.

Automation is key to ensuring smooth operations and consistent guest experiences. Automate various processes throughout the guest journey, such as check-in/out procedures, personalised offers, and post-stay feedback collection. This streamlines operations and frees up staff time to focus on delivering exceptional service.

6.   Segmenting the audience and the benefits of personalised communication

Segmenting your audience allows you to tailor messages according to guest preferences, interests, and previous interactions with your brand. This personalisation creates a more personalised and engaging experience for guests, increasing satisfaction and loyalty.

By sending automatic campaigns to returning guests, you can provide relevant information without overwhelming them with unnecessary details. For instance, offering digital room keys to returning guests while providing detailed check-in instructions to first-time guests.

Tip: 9 audiences you can create for better hotel marketing campaigns.

7.   Focus on your OTA guests

A person that makes a booking via OTA in many cases hasn’t even visited your website or had a chance to engage with your brand. In order to build guest loyalty and ensure the relationship is with the hotel instead of with the OTA, you must deliver personalised messages that add value to their experience and stay.

8.   Apply a step-by-step approach

Implementing a comprehensive guest journey might seem overwhelming initially, considering the numerous opportunities available. However, it is essential to start with the basics and gradually add more complex processes.

According to Isabel, it is important to always evaluate and iterate. Start by automating simple tasks and gradually expand to more sophisticated techniques. This step-by-step approach allows for effective implementation and continuous improvement.

Implementing a guest journey that focuses on segmentation, personalised communication, and automation can greatly enhance the guest experience and increase customer satisfaction and loyalty.

By implementing a hotel CRM platform for clean guest data, segmenting audiences, automating processes, and adopting a step-by-step approach, you can achieve a seamless and personalised guest journey that delivers exceptional service at every touchpoint.

With these strategies in place, hoteliers can achieve their goals of providing guests with a memorable experience and growing their business over time.

These practices worked well for Lindemann Hotels but if you are new in the industry, we have created a guest journey template. Download it to get ideas on valuable touchpoints and adapt it to your brand.

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