Close your eyes and picture the scene:
You’re running a major hotel in one of the busiest cities in the world. You’re sitting on the rooftop bar that overlooks the glittering cityscape. It’s your hotel’s pride and joy, front-and-center on all of your marketing materials.
Because all your guests love the rooftop bar, right?
Wrong. Once Duve looked into this hotel’s guest data they got a shock. As nice as the roof was—the number one thing guests cared about was decent parking.
By analyzing guests’ profiles, Duve realized that they cared a lot about parking because it was so hard to find in the neighborhood. And the hotel realized they were missing an opportunity.
Now they offer parking and valet services. Not only are guests happier but the hotel is able to charge for another service and make more money. Win-win.
The moral of this story is: know your guests. If you’re reading this article then you’re probably confident about your hotel’s ability to do that in real life. But it’s equally important to know your guests in the digital realm.
This article will explore:
- What exactly profile enrichment is
- Why it’s so important for your hospitality business
- How to use it to improve guest experience and drive revenue
Let’s dive right in.
Here’s Why Your Hotel Needs To Hone In On Guest Profile Enrichment
What exactly is guest profile enrichment? Most experts in our hotel network tend to break it down into two categories: physical and digital.
1. Physical profile enrichment
Let’s illustrate this with another example—imagine a boutique hotel in the center of Paris. It has 23 rooms but 80% of their bookings are returning guests. Clearly this hotel:
- Knows them extremely well
- Knows how to communicate with them and address their needs
- Knows how to keep them happy
Physical profile enrichment is Hospitality 101. As Jeremy Atlan, Duve’s co-founder and Chief Business Development Officer put it:
“Getting to know your guests is a crucial part of the hospitality experience. If you don’t know who is standing in front of you—how can you give them good service?”
Next up: Taking that into the digital world.
2. Digital Profile Enrichment
Digital solutions like online check-in, guest communication hubs, and web apps have taken the hotel industry by storm.
Hoteliers that don’t know how to leverage these tools are going to be left behind—because your competitors will be implementing tech into their hotels and this will improve their guest experience and reviews.
But you don’t need to be a tech wizard to take advantage of these changes. Profile enrichment is a simple way to get things rolling.
Here are the basic goals of profile enrichment in hotels:
Profile Enrichment Goals
Show guests relevant offerings to improve their stay
Recommending clubs for young people or golfing for those on business trips is more likely to convert when you have the relevant data
Improve guest engagement and conversion rate with the hotel’s activities, facilities and potential upsells
This drives revenues and profits for a comparatively small investment
Provide better services to your guests
When you know who your guests are, you can tailor the service and provide a better guest experience which equals better reviews and repeat stays
Even if your hotel isn’t targeting a specific demographic you’ll still benefit from enriching guest profiles.
Example: An airport hotel will get all kinds of guests (families, business travel, solo, etc). They’re not targeting a specific guest segment. But the more that the hotel knows about the type of guests staying, the more they’ll be able to tailor the experience to their needs.
Next up, some practical tips on how to implement this in your hotel.
The Two Branches Of Profile Enrichment Strategy
There are two main branches of profile enrichment strategy: manual profile enrichment, and digital profile enrichment. Here’s what they’re all about:
1. Manual profile enrichment
This happens, well, manually. Think one-to-one interactions on a daily basis with your guests:
- Booking: Are you asking them if they’re traveling for business or pleasure?
- Check-in: Do they have any special requests? Do they need to register their car or use the conference room?
- Miscellaneous: This covers any other interaction with hotel staff. They’re all opportunities for manual enrichment. Do they have any dietary or accessibility requirements?
Make the most of every interaction you have with your guests to show your hospitality and garner as much information on them as you can to give them the best possible experience.
2. Digital profile enrichment
This happens–you guessed it—digitally. Think:
- Internally: Are you issuing post-stay feedback forms to your guests? Are you tracking products and upsells sold? How about interactions on the guest app—posts read, communication with staff?
- Externally: Are you gathering customer data from your PMS, OTA, and CRM (property management system, online travel agency, customer relationship management)? All of these help craft a rich profile of your guests—who they are, what they like and don’t like, and what they’re interested in.
This data helps you improve the entire guest journey: from check-in through to tailored offers, custom upsells, or even just updates about things they care about. It can also be used to inform big picture decisions like whether your marketing material should focus on the rooftop bar or valet parking.
Not convinced? Here are five more reasons you should think seriously about implementing guest profile enrichment:
- It creates happier guests, who are more likely to become returning customers
- You can use that data to improve the level of service in your hotel
- It helps you foster a brand identity
- An improved guest experience helps spread word of mouth—which leads to more (and better) online reviews of your hotel
- And, most importantly, it helps drive revenue. You’ll know exactly how to match each guest with the right upsell for them.
The Cost Of Not Enriching Your Guest’s Profiles Is Rising
Changes in technology have given hoteliers the tools to understand their guests on a level that’s never before been possible.
But it’s more than just installing an online check-in system or a communications hub. You need a platform that lets you build guest profiles and tailor the entire guest experience to their unique needs, wants, and desires.
Tired of feeling in the dark about your guests? It’s time to change the status quo.