3 Simple Ways to Personalize the Guest Experience
A specialist explains some of the technologies that help resorts improve service.
Owners and guests want to feel special when they travel, and a personalized stay can help ensure a return booking. Resorts that can surprise travelers by knowing their preferences ahead of time—or by doing something extra on birthdays and other celebrations—are likely to earn owners’ loyalty as well as rave reviews.
Personalizing a guest’s stay doesn’t have to mean buying a new suite of state-of-the-art technology. “Hospitality is all about customer service, so while other industries are constantly trying out new technologies, hotels will always try to preserve their personal connection with guests,” says Taylor Short, senior market researcher at Software Advice. Below are a few ways to use standard technologies such as property-management software, customer-relations management tools and social media to provide guests with an exceptional experience.
Create Guest Profiles
Most property-management software has built-in note-taking sections that can be used by resort staff to track guest preferences. For instance, if an owner typically comes with their family, this information can be noted and used the next time they book so that staff can suggest activities everyone might enjoy. Or you can reward return travelers with a complimentary dessert (make a note of their favorite!) each time they visit. “Guests expect resorts to be up on technology but also have a warm, personal touch,” Short says. Utilizing the notes section of your property-management software lets staff invisibly use technology to create that personal touch.
Track VIP Guests
Customer-relations management software helps track guest data and guest interactions and has a certain level of automation that can log every interaction a VIP guest has with the resort and its staff. Mark your VIP guests and take note of the things they love in order to build an individualized stay for them. This could include having guests’ preferred sheets or pillows ready when they check in, or booking a reservation at their preferred restaurant before they arrive.
Utilize Social Channels
Some guests may tweet or share a post on Instagram with information that can help your resort make a good impression. For instance, the Palomar in Washington, D.C., noticed on social media that one of their regular guests was an avid cyclist, so it placed a stationary bike inside her room prior to check-in. These types of touches can transform a nice vacation into an unforgettable one—and since you’re building on the activities guests are already sharing on social media, these actions may even encourage guests to sing your praises in a post.
Image credit: iStockphoto