Collecting data and information from guests has become a fundamental part of any business business plan. To this day, despite the rise of social media, email remains the primary channel for hotels to create a comprehensive distribution program, drive direct sales, issue special offers and promote online reputation management.
In addition, with the impact of the pandemic, email has become the most important channel to contact guests, attract them and increase their income.
No algorithm changes
But why is email still so important? Social networks constantly change their algorithms, so the traffic that comes from there to our website can drop considerably from one day to the next. However, with email you do not depend on any third party: if you have their email, the information will reach them, as there is no risk that any algorithm that hides our information will change.
In addition, if we have other customer data (tastes, buying behavior, preferences …) we can offer hyper-personalized offers via email.
But to achieve this customization we have to be sure that the client leaves us the mail. For that, we can, for example, send you a confirmation email to activate the Wi-Fi connection. There are several successful strategies to get the customer to give us a real email. For example, we can request it to confirm your access to different facilities such as the spa, the swimming pool or the gym. Just give it a little imagination.
Likewise, it is important that all your staff are informed of the hotel’s email marketing strategy; first to be able to get so much desired information and, second, so that what we offer to the guest through email is later fulfilled upon arrival at the hotel.
Get the email before arriving
One of the hotel’s goals should be to obtain the guest’s contact details prior to arrival. Enabling online check-in strategies may be enough for the guest to feel interested in leaving their email. If we add a good customer experience strategy to this, we will have managed to make a good impression before the guest walks through our door.
For example, we can send an email giving the guest to choose a series of preferences (type of room, amenities, restaurant reservation option, shows …). Facilitating all that offer can help the guest to save time.
And as it was said at the beginning, the fact of having your email helps us to improve the conversion, because a specific email, with a specific offer, can be very useful to increase direct bookings. Of course, to do so, you have to make a good design and optimized for mobile devices. That is, we have to make it easy and attractive to the customer.
Likewise, we have to make you see in that emailing the advantage of booking directly, instead of doing it through an OTA. Most guests don’t see the difference between booking through Booking or booking on the hotel’s website. For this reason, our emaling campaigns have to make it very clear what these advantages are: breakfast, Wi-Fi or parking included, better cancellation policies, late check out, better price … Anything goes when it comes to attracting the guest to our booking engine .
And then don’t forget to follow up
If we have obtained the client’s email in the pre-stay or during the stay, we cannot forget about it once they have left the hotel. The first thing, ask you to leave a review, either on our website, on social networks or portals such as Google or Tripadvisor.
Likewise, it is essential that the data is shared among the different departments, but at the same time that there is a transversal strategy. We cannot saturate the client with emails, as most likely they will unsubscribe from our communications.
And above all, let the guest know why you need their email and what benefits being part of your database will bring. Clear and transparent communication is much more effective than using opaque strategies that may make the guest think that they are intruding on their privacy more than necessary.
In short, instruct your workers to be able to get the information we need without overwhelming the guest. They are the ones who are ‘at street level’ and who are going to deal directly with their customers.
We are entering the age of hyper-personalization. Generalist emails with generic offers are over. It’s time to do something else. But in order to get started we need very specific information from our clients without making them feel intimidated. Are you ready for this?