Clear, coherent, and regular guest communication can help you enhance the guest experience. It enables you to cement a special bond with your existing and potential guests in many ways. It connects them with you, with your brand. Now, what will be your reaction if we tell you that an intelligent booking engine can help you have a streamlined guest communications strategy in place? Talk to your guests and ensure efficient hospitality marketing with a hotel booking engine.
Sounds interesting? Let’s explore this a bit.
Importance of a booking engine
You may call it a booking engine, web booking engine, or an online booking engine; it can be integrated with your hotel website and social media pages to get more direct bookings. This is the core benefit of having a booking engine. However, it also acts as a competent and intelligent platform to expedite your hospitality marketing strategy by enabling you to communicate with your guests with ease and effectively. Technically speaking, the booking engine doesn’t talk to your guests, but it helps you with what you want – the guest data. An intelligent booking engine captures several guest data points, including verified email addresses, phone numbers, nationality, age, date of birth, and many other things. Such data is considered the most valuable asset when you plan to execute a successful guest communication plan for your hotel, and therefore in hospitality marketing strategy
It’s now time to set things in motion – start talking.
The guest cycle starts the moment they book with you, and your responsibility to open up a loop of meaningful communication begins from here. You may get off the mark with a –
Booking/reservation confirmation mail: Acknowledge that you have confirmed their bookings. Mention all the details, including room nights/types/rates/number, the number of guests, the deposit made, package taken, check-in/check-out date/time, cancellation policy, and other important information. This written confirmation from your side states that you intend to honor the booking. Tell them how excited you are to have them at your property. It builds trust that matters a lot in the hotel business.
Pre-stay/arrival mail: Shoot an email their way 3-4 days before the check-in/arrival. Tell them that you are all set to welcome them. Use this mail to remind them about their upcoming stay with you. You can also promote your extra services, like “pay a certain amount and upgrade to premium rooms.” This helps you earn more. Also, don’t forget to list your free/complimentary/paid services that they can use during their stay.
Arrival mail: Send this mail out on the day of arrival, but much before the check-in. Please remind them about the check-in time/flexible check-in time and ask if they want any assistance like airport pick up and all. Share your hotel location map to help them find your property easily. Prompt them to finish their check-in by using their mobile phones to avoid front-desk formalities. Most importantly, state it clearly that their rooms are ready to occupy.
In-stay mail: Dispatch this mail their way right after they settle in. Tell them how to access the free Wi-Fi. Let them know about other services while promoting in-house amenities like a gym, spa, gift shop, and restaurant. Look at their food ordering pattern, find out if they order continental food, then you must use the opportunity to talk about your celebrated continental kitchen. See if they like single-malt whisky, then flaunt your collection. All these will help you earn more non-room revenue to increase your profitability. It gives you a chance to upsell your non-room items.
Checkout mail: Ring this bell to tell them about the departure timing. Ensure you inform them how they could save time near the front desk by making a full and final settlement in advance. Ask if they want a cab for airport drop.
Post-stay mail: You may call it a ‘Thank You’ mail. Even if you term it as a formality, this is a must-do. Express your gratitude for allowing you to serve them. Don’t forget to attach the full and final bill.
Feedback mail: Don’t be in a hurry about it. But then don’t delay it by weeks. You can send this mail in a day or two post-checkout to seek their feedback on the standard of your hospitality. Just make sure that the feedback-giving process for them is easy. Request them to leave a review on popular review sites.
Don’t stop after you receive their feedback. Keep appraising them about the amenity you just have added, or if you have owned a “Best Hotel” award. Wish them on their birthdays and wedding anniversaries, etc.
What about guests who abandoned or canceled their bookings?
Yeah, we knew that you would ask this. As your book engine still helps you capture guest details, you can craft personalized emails to bring them back to your property.
For example, you can immediately start talking to them post-booking abandonment or cancellation. You must sound sorry for not being able to serve them at the moment. They shouldn’t feel that you don’t care about them as they didn’t book your hotel. Go ahead, share your story with them via occasional emails, and give them reasons to choose you next time. And once you manage to bring them back, repeat the whole exercise mentioned above.
For potential guests or repeat guests, communication is vital for successful hospitality marketing. For your hotel, the benefits of effective communication are enormous. You can cost-effectively –
- Promote your brand
- Drive more bookings
- Sell more non-room items
- Get more positive review from happy guests
- Create repeat guests while minimizing the cost of guest acquisition
However, you should also keep these points in mind while talking to your guests –
- Be consistent and genuine with your tone
- Respect their time
- Don’t bombard them with unnecessary and irrelevant newsletters
- Carefully craft your subject line
- The most important thing is that you must make them feel valued
The booking engine from AxisRooms
You can leverage the power of our booking engine to inform guests about your special deals and promo codes. Such offers influence their booking decisions, and they are more likely to book directly with you.