Get more direct bookings through automation: Booking. What next?

Get more direct bookings through automation: Booking. What next?

17 December 2019Agata Blachowska

Do you consider each completed booking as a sales success? Be careful. You are only halfway there. With the clever management of information you provide to your guests before their arrival, you can win their trust and increase your profits. Find out how much marketing power you wield every single day!

When making a booking, guests move on to the next stage of their journey – awaiting their departure to arrive at the hotel, for example. Contrary to what you might think, this is not the time you await their arrival enjoying the successful sale. It is right now that you should establish a relationship with your guest and start working on the guest experience. Yes, even before they arrive!

Find out why asking a guest to stay is like asking for a date

Thanks for choosing us

The first opportunity to establish a positive relationship with a guest who booked with you is to express gratitude for doing so. It is not just a casual formula but a marketing tool that helps you boost the image of your hotel. You can use this message to provide additional information about their stay or offer additional services (cross-selling).

Focus on essential information, e.g.:

  • a brief introduction to the hotel,
  • information on breakfast and restaurant opening times,
  • parking information (especially if an additional charge applies or if the hotel offers a limited number of parking spaces which require booking in – let them know about it!)
  • reception opening hours,
  • in the case of apartment rental, information on where and how to collect the keys or card.

Remember that you can also use the thank you message to sell additional options. Does your hotel include a SPA? Offer a special package with a discount. Consider what special offers you can propose at this stage. Present them in such a way that the guest feels a genuine need to use them (and take advantage of this unique offer).

Think carefully to identify the marketing purpose behind expressing gratitude for the booking. It is a good idea that you send another message the day before your guest’s arrival but make sure the information in the two messages does not overlap.

generate-more-bookings-couple-trip

Welcome!

A welcome pack is a sort of guide for a guest sent the day prior to the guest’s arrival. It could be more detailed and include information about:

  • detailed directions – preferably with a link to a map allowing to plan the route,
  • a hotel transfer (if available) from the airport or from the railway station. Remember that this is a great convenience for a guest who has come to a big city for the first time and does not have to look for a taxi or public transport,
  • technical information on check-in and check-out times,
  • restaurant opening hours. Invite guests to the hotel’s restaurant, introduce the chef, show the specialities on the menu, additional attractions related to meals in the restaurant – encourage the guest to dine in the hotel and not outside,
  • additional hotel attractions: SPA, gym, Wellness zone, lobby bar, swimming pools, etc.
  • local attractions: list the most interesting places worth visiting – make your guests feel that their stay may also be very interesting in this respect. Be sure to arrange special offers for your guests – e.g. in museums, theatres, shops selling regional products, etc. The attractions should suit the season – it works!

Reception as the key to increased sales

Don’t forget about the key role your reception plays in up- and cross-selling. If the reception desk reminds visitors of the Welcome Pack offers upon check-in, the probability of buying these offers increases.

This very moment is also a good opportunity to obtain marketing consent from the guest (unless given beforehand). It is worth encouraging guests to do so by presenting the benefits they receive – attractive offers given exclusively in the newsletter, special discount options, etc.

Automated means convenient

Thoughtful and well-conducted communication with guests can translate into increased sales at the hotel, but most importantly it can positively affect the guest experience. Enhancing guest experience will actually increase the likelihood that your visitors will appreciate their stay in the hotel (this is your opportunity to attract other guests). You will also build a lasting relationship with guests (then they are likely to be happy to pick your offer in the future).

To maximize the benefits of the Thank You Message and the Welcome pack, automate their shipment. Your thanks should reach the guest several minutes after making the booking. This means you have to spend a significant amount of time handling this information. Automation of this process in Profitroom CRM will reduce the reception workload. It also guarantees that emails are sent out at the right time and carrying an appropriate message.

A guest should receive the welcome pack the day before the arrival. Here too, automatic solutions yield many organizational benefits:

  • The reception staff no longer needs to check when and to whom to send a message, nor do they need to make a mailing schedule. The system generates it automatically.
  • Preparation of the mailing itself is time-consuming – using the solutions in Profitroom CRM saves you time and provides access to data at all times.

Find out how well your hotel uses the potential for communication with guests before their arrival:

  • Imagine you have booked a stay at your hotel. You are a first-time visitor to this city and this hotel. What information would you expect to receive from the hotel? What would you like to know before you arrive? Think about it and create the content of the Thank You Message and the Welcome packet on that basis.
  • What attractions do you offer to your guests? Make a list of attractions both within the hotel and in the immediate vicinity.
  • Encourage the guest to give their marketing consent. What benefits can you give them? Draft them.
  • create a checklist for the reception team including additional options that can be sold to guests during their stay. Add the main benefits for each item.

Learn more about the guest’s travel journey

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