5 Tips for Boosting Hotel Customer Loyalty

January 25, 2022
5 Tips for Boosting Hotel Customer Loyalty

A hotel’s customer loyalty can often be an overlooked source of revenue.

In the big picture, retaining the right customers costs less than attracting new ones. The amount of effort and resources it takes to market and sell to new customers is, well, a lot, depending on your hotel’s approach. If you already have customers that are loyal to your hotel, you don’t need to spend more money bringing new ones in.

Besides saving time and energy on bringing in new business, customer loyalty also comes with a plethora of other benefits:

  • Customer loyalty helps your hotel build a reputation and stand out from competitors
  • Guests who are happy with their experience are more likely to refer others to your hotel
  • Loyal customers are more forgiving of mistakes
  • It’s easier to up-sell to customers who already feel valued

So it’s clear that customer loyalty is a smart way to drive business. Now, let’s look at 5 ways to increase it:

1- Assess your past bookings

Some past bookings are naturally going to be more profitable than others. Strategize who has been an ideal guest and work from there.

Customers who book often, book for long periods of time, and who offer a large amount of monetary value during their stay should be prioritized.

From there, you can look at how to best serve these guests by understanding what their needs are. A corporate event will look different than a family event or community event.

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2- Personalize your guest experiences

Whether it’s a chatbot, virtual check-in experience, or pre-trip email communication, a personalized guest experience matters. It should be no surprise that connecting with guests in a relevant way is helpful for retention and overall customer loyalty.

According to a study done by Epsilon, 80% of customers are more likely to make a purchase if they consider the brand to have a personalized experience.

In the same study, 64% say travel websites/apps are currently delivering personalized experiences very/somewhat well. This data points to guests becoming more accustomed to a personalized experience, meaning if you want your hotel to be competitive, you’ll have to take steps to make their stay feel customized.

Part of making the personalization relevant is presenting information in a genuine way. Communication for the right person at the right time is key.

For example, separate email campaigns for business and leisure travel are a more targeted way to communicate with customers. Also sending your guests follow-up emails on their experience is a way to connect with them and get feedback.

3 - Loyalty Programs

Loyalty programs. The goal is written in the name.

It’s common for hotels to have loyalty programs but think about how your hotel can improve the idea. Loyal program points are great but what about having a more customized incentivization?

To achieve this, you can start with data.

Based on how your guests transact, you can make informed, personalized incentives. You can segment your guests based on their needs, wants and create opportunities for them to redeem rewards.

For example, refer back to your guests' past bookings to get information on their activities and any requests they may have had. If they booked a meeting or venue space, you may want to create opportunities for them to redeem rewards based on those hotel features.

A MasterCard study found that customers who received personalized offers increased their spending by up to 18%. So if there’s one takeaway you get from learning about loyalty programs, it’s that personalization really makes a difference.

4 - Automated Follow-Up Emails

Automated follow-up emails provide another opportunity to build guest loyalty.

Through automated emails, guests can stay informed and more aware of what’s happening with your hotel. You can update past guests with promotions, rewards, referral requests, and stay relevant.

Automated emails also provide an opportunity for your guests to reflect on their experience with your hotel. Having feedback surveys for your guests is a great way for you to make improvements and also shows that you care about guest input.

If you have a modern CRM system, it should be able to automate this task!

5 - Use Social Media To Encourage Engagement

Social media provides a unique way to connect with your users and build customer loyalty.

Most people are already active on social websites so tapping into this audience will help with your hotel’s brand awareness in addition to user loyalty.

Because it’s a two-way street, you can also use social media as a way to engage with your users. Interact with your audience and encourage dialog!

Let’s also talk about social listening. Social listening is a term used to describe the act of listening to an audience online through their engagement on social media. Your hotel can use social listening to engage with their guests and discover what matters to them and what trends can help drive higher quality social media content.

For tips on improving your social media, click here to check out our blog on it.

Final Thoughts

There are many approaches to customer loyalty so be strategic about what works best for your hotel.

When in doubt, customer loyalty comes down to a strong focus on service. Being mindful of your guests and creating a positive experience is what you need to compete in today’s market.

Genuine connections with guests, consistency and a seamless experience are all ingredients for your customers to feel valued and keep coming back.

Think we missed something? Let us know what tips you have on customer loyalty in the comments below.

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