ReviewPro – Online reputation affects hospitality

reputationOnline reputation is at the core of success in today’s digital world. And nowhere more so than in the hospitality industry, where potential guests read reviews before deciding on a place to stay, both for personal and business travel. Management responses are hugely valuable not only to the guest that wrote the review, but also to people looking to book in the future.

Responses need to show empathy, have a human tone and above all not appear to be ‘canned’. Acknowledge if there has been a problem, offer a solution or show how the problem will be solved, and confirm that it will not happen again.

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Responding to reviews shows that your establishment is listening, cares about the issues that have negatively impacted guest experiences and that you are open to suggestions to improve. I recommend that hoteliers respond to 100 per cent of negative reviews, and a selection of neutral and positive ones. Choosing the right response. Different social media platforms need to be managed with different levels of urgency. While they generally have little short-term impact on reservations or the brand, a negative review on an online travel agency site (OTA) should be responded to quickly. This shows a courtesy to the complainant and to the wider audience that you are proactive in addressing problems.

However, bad experiences shared on social platforms such as YouTube and Facebook (especially if accompanied by ‘incriminating’ photos) can have a devastating effect very quickly. They should be addressed with the highest level of urgency.

Getting ‘in-stay’ feedback. Guest feedback is a great resource for learning and improving. And while online reviews and post-stay surveys are valuable for identifying opportunities to make improvements, never underestimate the value of in-stay surveys. Capturing negative feedback while guests are still on property allows managers to do service recovery and show guests first-hand that the management team goes the extra mile to resolve their problems.

In today’s digital landscape this also means employing guest messaging as part of your strategy. Guest messaging is key to meeting guest expectations of immediacy today. Capturing feedback on site can have a profound effect on your rankings in on OTAs and TripAdvisor by turning what would have likely been a negative review into a positive one.”

For more information please visit www.reviewpro.com

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