Hotel reputation management is important for all hotels, especially the management of your online reputation.
How travelers perceive, rate, review, share and search for information about your establishment directly affects the success of your hotel.
We’ll discuss actions you should take to positively impact your reputation on social media platforms, review sites, and search engines. We’ll also discuss ways to strengthen your reputation management strategy and considerations for hiring a reputation management company.
What is Hotel Reputation Management?
“Hotel reputation management is the practice of monitoring and influencing how your property is perceived throughout the web. The concept emerged within public relations but shifted its focus towards newly emerging review sites, social media platforms, and search engines. Hardly any other industry is as vulnerable or affected by the impact of reputation management as the hospitality industry.”*
Why is Hospitality Reputation Management Important?
Travelers rely much less on travel agents than in the past, and the travel agents still in business don’t rely on expert opinions to book travel anymore. Consumer-generated content wields all the influence.
According to TripAdvisor:
- 93% of people use online reviews when determining which hotel they want to book
- 53% of the people surveyed would not book a hotel that didn’t have online reviews
Before the Internet, travelers referred to guidebooks like their trusty Lonely Planet or Rough Guide. A good review in one of these publications would keep your hotel’s reputation safe for years. Now reputations can change with a click.
Sites like TripAdvisor, Booking.com, and Yelp have made it easy for travelers to share their experiences in real-time, and this informs the traveler’s decision-making more than almost any other information available.
How to Positively Impact Your Hotels Reputation
- Be informed. Regularly monitor your brand reputation throughout all online media. Go beyond Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Booking.com. Create and monitor your presence on Instagram, Facebook, and Google Reviews.
- Have an engaging website. Include good photography, video and 360 technology. Half of all travelers book hotel stays via a smartphone or tablet, make sure your site is optimized for mobile.
- Respond to All Reviews. Good reviews are great, but a poor review left unresolved or not responded to does damage. Respond in a timely and professional manner, and never engage in online negativity with a customer. Look at the reviews from the guest’s perspective and respond accordingly. Negative reviews are opportunities for improvement. A responsive brand wins favor with existing and prospective guests alike by taking these reviews as constructive feedback and managing their reputation.
- Use an Influencer. Social media influencers can boost a hotel brand’s visibility while also boosting a hotel’s online reputation. They can be trusted ambassadors for your brand, and go places salespeople can’t. Reputation Management firms can connect you with relevant influencers.
Is it Worth Hiring a Reputation Management Company?
For many hotels hiring a reputation management company is a new concept. But tackling the vastness of the internet consumer culture can be challenging. Working with specialists can be worthwhile to explore.
For many hotel owners and managers, the day-to-day pressures of running your ground operations are tough enough, and learning what a digital agency can offer is worth consideration.
Making the investment in online reputation management specialists offers the potential to access untapped revenue streams. They may better analyze the details of data you might be missing. They can educate your existing staff on other reputation management opportunities, and keep you current with a fast-moving media.
Make sure to monitor your online presence with an eagle eye. Your reputation is one of your most valuable assets. Follow ratings and reviews carefully and respond quickly when required. Keep your website current and engaging. Get social media savvy and woo influencers where possible. Track your search rankings.
If you need help, find the right reputation management partner.
*From Customer Alliances Resources, https://www.customer-alliance.com/en/articles/hotel-reputation-management/