Maintaining your brand or hotel’s reputation is a long-term, 24/7 job, and is essential for positive brand awareness and increased customer satisfaction. There are generally two key parts to reputation management: establishing what guests and the general public are saying, then reacting to it in the appropriate way. Take it online, though, and there’s an added step: finding out where people are talking about you.
This can present great challenges for hotels – today there are a plethora of digital destinations where guests and potential customers can go to discuss your product. Travel forums have always existed – such as the likes of Lonely Planet’s Thorn Tree, where people might ask for recommendations or debate the ‘best hotel in town’ – but when platforms dedicated to reviewing came along, everything changed for hotels. Today, as a consumer, you can leave your two cents on any number of sites, from TripAdvisor to Google and, of course, Booking.com.
Social media cannot be ignored
Then there’s social media. A place where people share all manner of information about themselves and daily experiences – the good and the bad. In the Q3 Sprout Social Index in 2017, 46% of people said they had used social media to ‘call out’ brands online – this could be for anything from a customer service mishap to a faulty product. Plus, 35% of people said they would actively boycott a brand if their comments are ignored.
Technology: the problem and the solution
Cyril Codron, Head of Product for Mention – an online monitoring tool that allows users to see what people are saying across platforms – says that the technology can be immensely helpful. “Listening to conversations online from customers and guests provides you with a deeper understanding of their experience and interaction with your brand.
Similarly, Review Pro sells itself as a ‘guest intelligence solution’, encompassing everything from online reputation management to guest satisfaction surveys, and a guest messaging hub. RJ Friedlander, CEO & Co-Founder of ReviewPro, says responding to reviews is a key part of reputation management online. “Responding to reviews shows that your establishment is listening, and that you care about the issues that have negatively impacted guest experiences and are open to suggestions to improve.”
These online tools can’t be relied upon alone, though. “Although a monitoring tool has a huge advantage for hotels who are serving guests 24/7,” explains Codron, “it’s not a siloed tool. A monitoring solution must be used as an inclusive tool within your overall business strategy.”
Read Original Article