Speaking the same language as guests: How you can optimise communication at your hotel

  Posted in Hotel Management

If someone asked what the number one priority was at your hotel, it’s very likely your answer will be something along the lines of ‘…providing great guest service’. The guests who stay at your hotel are not just a uniform line of paying customers. They have the potential to be brand ambassadors (or detractors) and can decide the long-term fate of your business. Therefore it’s imperative every guest goes home happy and looks forward to returning.

Obviously there’s a lot that goes into perfecting guest experience. One major factor is the way you communicate and interact with guests. Here’s what you can do to get it right…

1. Keep communication with your guests regular

Prior to their stay guests are going to be highly anticipating their trip. Maintaining regular contact will keep them excited and assure them you’re thinking about them and showing how important it is to offer a positive experience. Send email reminders, suggestions, and remember to ask guests if they have any last minute requests. Often there’s always something people haven’t thought to ask. A good online booking engine for your hotel’s website can facilitate your pre- and post-stay communication with your guests.

The same principles apply after a guest has departed. People want to relive good memories and tell their friends and family. Send emails to thank guests for their stay and if you know they used certain amenities or saw particular attractions list them off to make recalling positive experiences easier for them.

This kind of personal touch extends beyond emails of course. If you speak to guests on the phone or in person, the way you communicate should be the same.

Maintaining regular contact will keep guests excited and assure them you’re thinking about how important it is to give them a positive experience.

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2. Maintain a consistent level of guest service

Friendly and personal interactions shouldn’t just be reserved for the conversation between guests and front desk staff. Every staff member in your hotel must work to the same standards and be willing to field enquiries or engage in small talk at all times, whether it’s a waiter or a cleaner. This will create the impression that you always have time for your guests; they come before any other task.

Your staff need to see everything from the guests perspective. If your staff perform as they’d like if they were the one’s staying at the hotel, there should be no reason for guests to complain.

3. Body language towards your guests is equally important

It isn’t enough to simply engage in pleasantries. After all, it’s as much about how you say things as what you say.

Your staff need to be energetic and cheerful around guests, be easy to smile and laugh. Eye contact is imperative when speaking to someone. It lets them know you’re genuinely listening to their concerns or requests.

It also helps if your staff seem to be enjoying their job and are engaged with their tasks. Guests may feel less inclined to make requests if staff look grumpy or disinterested. This can be helped by the way they dress and are presented too.

4. Keep lines of communication with your guests open

It’s very important guests can make requests, give feedback, or ask questions at all times. Only then will they feel they’re being properly attended to.

If your staff can’t be on hand 24-hours a day, make sure you’re using a messenger app or a chatbot via social media to field any queries they may have. Think about how you navigate new experiences, it’s natural to have questions and often they’re about things you hadn’t considered before. Your guests are exactly the same.

Always be accepting of feedback, even if it’s negative. It might draw your attention to an ongoing issue which needs fixing or simply let you know where improvements need to be made. Most of the time, a negative can become a positive in the long run.

5. Be accessible to all guests

Obviously many guests at your hotel will be from other countries and continents. Many of them will not speak the same native tongue as you and may find it difficult to communicate effectively.

To make things easier for them, it’s important your website and booking engine are multilingual and equipped to handle currency conversions. This will mean international guests won’t have to ask as many questions and can enjoy a smoother booking experience, while you will also have less work on your plate.

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