Selling Experiences Not Rooms: 3 Examples of Hotel Marketers Going the Extra Mile
December 24, 2015 by Sarah Hughes
Whether you cater to guests travelling for business or pleasure, in a group, with the family or alone, you want them to know that they are the only people you are thinking about. Your hotel guest must believe that they are the centre of your world for the extent of their stay by selling experiences.
Good customer service is easy, but excellent customer service only occurs when your hotel goes that one step further than your guests could ever possibly expect.
Here are three examples of hotel marketers that go that extra mile for their guests:
1. Andaz Hotels
A unique chain of hotels that manages to combine individuality with high-class customer service across each and every hotel when selling experiences. The Hyatt group running the Andaz hotels adds local creativity and flavour to each location, taking away that cold, faceless corporate feeling that accompanies so many other chains.
However, it is not this that makes Andaz hotels stand out as going that extra mile; it is their approach to the check-in process. Check-in is your first taste of the hotel and the experience you can look forward to while you are staying there. The last thing you want to do after a long journey is stand in a queue waiting to be checked-in and shown to your room. Andaz Hotels have removed this potentially frustrating experience by replacing the traditional reception desk with hosts who meet you as you arrive through the front door.
You are seated upon your arrival and offered complimentary refreshments as your host is completing the check-in procedure. Once you are ready, and not before, you are taken to you room by the host, who will then remain your first named point of contact for the entirety of your stay.
2. Sheraton Bratislava
Most businesses know that connecting with social media is essential to reaching out to prospective customers and getting to know them better. Within the hotel industry, social media is increasingly used to open up new marketing opportunities, from requesting feedback after stays to keeping in touch with previous guests in the hope they will return.
However, the Sheraton Bratislava is one hotel, in particular, whose hotel marketers have taken the use of social media to a whole new level when selling experiences, by providing a personalised service for its guests. They use publicly available information shared on social media by guests to design welcome gifts, ideas for trips during their stay and, more importantly, to show they care about each individual that stays with them.
The gifts that are given to guests are not extravagant, which even adds to the appeal. For example, one guest enjoyed taking photos of their travels and sharing them on Instagram, so the hotel provided a hand-picked selection of photos of Bratislava for the guest to enjoy.
3. Rome Cavalieri
There are many elements that make this hotel stand out, from its stunning views and close proximity to all that Rome has to offer, to the size and opulence of its rooms. However, in terms of going that extra mile to provide you with an experience you will want to tell everyone about it is their Pampered Pets service that wins hands down.
An increasing number of hotels allow you to travel with your canine companion, but few treat them as well as the Cavalieri, where your pet really is treated as another guest. Your dog gets to choose from their very own special doggy menu that includes treats such as tuna and game, enjoy their own special bed in your room, and a personalised cashmere jumper if you chose to order one. The hotel provides a dog walking service and will even escort your pet to the local dog spa while you take time out to relax. You really can’t ask for more of an extra mile than that.
Selling experiences and not just a room
As you can see, there are no one-size-fits-all answers to providing a memorable experience your guests will remember for all the right reasons. The answer is unique to your hotel, your business model, your clientele and your surroundings. However, one thing that shines through in all of these examples is that the key to selling experience is to do proper research to be an elite hotel marketer.
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