One of the biggest challenges hoteliers face is the constant battle to come up with inventive ways to boost occupancy rates in their hotels. While there are short term strategies that can be employed, like drastically slashing room rates, such tricks are unsustainable and not successful as a long term marketing approach. With the advent of technology, digital marketing has become a primary source for hotels to attract and book guests, but with everyone following the same playbook, how do you set your hotel apart from the competition?
What All Successful Hotels Have In Common
To begin, consider the one thing that successful hotels have in common – they all provide a superior and memorable experience for their guests. Whether it is a small boutique spot in Napa or a luxury tower in Manhattan’s Upper East Side, thriving hotels understand the importance of creating a unique customer experience and that this experience directly correlates to their profitability. Understanding that this begins the moment a guest has booked their stay gives hoteliers the opportunity to begin the conversation and create relationships even before the guests arrive at the front desk.
The Importance of Personalization In A Digital World
In a world where click and pings inhabit our daily existence and many of us wake up to an email box that is dominated by newsletters, spam, and notifications, it can be difficult for companies to stand out and get noticed. Personalized digital communication is now considered run of the mill and once again it is time for hoteliers to employ methods of disruption from the standard in order to create an impact. The handwritten note is the perfect way to cut through all of the noise.
The Power of the Handwritten Note
Ask yourself this, have you ever received a handwritten note or card in your mailbox that you didn’t open? Probably not, since studies show that handwritten notes have close to a 100% open rate!
Hotels can begin creating a unique guest experience immediately by sending a handwritten note as soon as a reservation has been made. Because a person’s name is the greatest connection to their own identity and individuality, seeing it in a handwritten note thanking them for choosing the hotel will make them feel special, recognized, and personally connected.
Points of Contact For Hotel Guest Engagement
This first point of contact is just one way to utilize the lost art of handwriting in a hotel marketing strategy. A welcome note in a guest’s room and a “thank you for staying” letter are musts, but the notes don’t need to end at checkout. Consider a long term campaign by sending 11-month reminders of their stay with an incentive for returning or perhaps a note alerting them of special events in the area a couple of days before guest arrival.
Whether guests have booked your hotel for a relaxing break or for a business trip, they expect a high standard of customer service as well as a high level of comfort. Every guest in your hotel should feel special and that they’re important to your business and therefore delighting them with handwritten notes is a great way to stand out!
Handwritten Notes Convert
In terms of convenience, handwritten notes can be an overwhelming task, especially for large luxury hotels. It would take a small army of employees to individually write, address, post and send what would be thousands upon thousands of letters. Fortunately, Scribeless has created a platform that allows luxury hotels the ability to connect with guests through handwritten notes and cards en masse, while retaining the beauty and nostalgia of the process.
The Case of Hyatt Hotels
Hyatt Hotels enjoyed an increase of 635% in response rates over their traditional direct and email campaigns when they used Scribeless in a recent marketing campaign. Connecting with 40,000 first time first guests, Scribeless created and distributed personalized handwritten notes resulting in the huge response and an additional increase of 18% in repeat bookings.
In the age of online booking portals and mass emails, guests appreciate and notice when extra efforts of gratitude and caring are made. If you want to get noticed, if you want to have people feel like you care then adding handwriting to your marketing strategy will ensure that guests remember their experience with your hotel for a long time to come.