What do guests want? The gold standard of hospitality is knowing the answer before guests ever have to ask. Thanks to modern data collection, those expectations are more available than ever. At every touch-point guests reveal what they expect from their stay, through past bookings, user profiles and online reviews. The more that hotels are able to capture, analyze and leverage that data, the more exceptional (and personalized) the guest experience becomes.
At least in theory. Working with data can be as challenging as it is advantageous. The volume and velocity are often overwhelming, making it difficult to collect everything of value as comprehensively—and put it to use as strategically—as hotels would like. Not only is this a lost opportunity, but it’s also a liability: bad data can be as misleading as good data is insightful. Here are some examples of the problems that can imperceptibly creep into data.
- Errors – Data that is inaccurate or incorrect
- Omissions – Data that is incomplete
- Irrelevancies – Data that is out of date or no longer relevant
- Inconsistencies – Data that contradicts data found elsewhere
- Duplicates – Data that exists in multiple places
- Unknowns – Data that has become inaccessible and overlooked
How do you prevent these issues? Generally speaking, by automating as much of the data management process as possible. Manual inputs lead to human errors, and even the most cautious teams can’t prevent, correct or even find every problem. Relying on a data-driven PMS ensures you collect as much clean data as you possibly can, and helps you utilize it to its full potential. Once that happens, hotels have exciting new opportunities at their disposal.
Target Your Marketing for Maximum Impact
Imagine marketing to customers you know well instead of anonymous masses of travelers. Guest data allows hotels to target their marketing messages and outreach strategies based on the known preferences of the final recipients. So if someone loves to schedule a massage or always travels in April, hotels can work that information into an email campaign, or even bring it up during the booking process to facilitate upselling.
Keep Your Best Guests Happy
Data reveals who your most important guests are, both in terms of repeat bookings, total revenue and online influence. Since these guests have an outsized impact on the bottom line, it’s important to keep them happy with every interaction. Data can be compiled into comprehensive guest profiles that all hotel staff can use to deliver a higher-level of service. The best part is, when a PMS makes it easy to create these profiles they don’t have to be limited to elite guests. Ultimately, data helps hotels treat everyone like a VIP.
Improve Performance Across the Board
Once you really get adept with data, you can begin correlating data about guests, revenue, bookings and operations. Here’s an example: let’s say you noticed a drop in revenue last summer, as well as an uptick in online reviews complaining about housekeeping. Now you understand exactly what kind of impact bad housekeeping is having on the bottom line, and you can take steps ensure housekeeping gets the boost it needs. Tracking and analyzing good data makes it possible for hotels to understand and improve all aspects of performance.
Cultivate the Guest Lifecycle from Brand Awareness to Loyalty
In a highly-competitive industry like hospitality, it pays to be known as the hotel that delivers convenience, customization and compelling deals. Better data leads directly to more loyal guests, repeat bookings, positive online reviews and favorable brand perception. Today’s guests expect to be understood, not just accommodated, and that expectation grows as automation becomes the norm across the industry. Building a foundation of quality data is imperative for every hotel.
Improving data quality requires plans, policies and persistence, but technology is really the linchpin of the effort. Your PMS should be the centerpiece, helping you collect more quality data and extract more valuable insights as a result. What do guests want? With the right PMS in place, you’ll always know the answer.
RoomKeyPMS is built to make data accurate, accessible, and actionable. When you’re ready to leverage your data assets to full effect, contact us to get all the assistance you need.
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