Digital Vacations: Mobile for Hospitality

Mobile for hospitality

As summer draws to a close, there’s one thing on everyone’s minds: vacation. It’s tough for most consumers to take a vacation from their smartphones, though, so this week the OwnerListens blog is taking a closer look at the way hotels use mobile to interact with their guests.

Some hotels’ apps provide more diverse offerings than others, but the standard fare includes mobile booking, check-in, and loyalty program information, as seen in Hyatt, Starwood, Fairmont, and Wyndham’s mobile offerings. A few major chains offer keyless entry, sometimes in separate apps, and others, like Hilton and SPG’s W Hotels, add features such as room service ordering and amenity requests. Marriott’s app has the most features of the apps we surveyed, with valet and housekeeping functions added to the above, along with a live chat option.

So even in the hospitality business, there’s an app for that – but does there need to be?

Realistically, can hotels expect their guests to download a separate app for every chain they stay with, when they only visit on average a few times a year?

Probably not. At OwnerListens, we have a better idea.

OwnerListens will generate a virtual number for your business, so you and your employees can communicate with customers seamlessly via text or instant message. There’s no app or website needed, and anyone with a mobile phone can reach you. That’s important, because tourists don’t always have access to wifi or sufficient data plans to download an app or use a mobile site. Customers don’t need to have a smartphone, either: we support SMS, so feature phones work just as well.

Additionally, if a customer sends a message through an app, where does that message really go? With an OwnerListens virtual number, the message goes directly to the on-site employee who should receive it.

In hospitality, customers can use your OwnerListens number to order room service, make dinner reservations, ask for amenities, text the valet, and so much more.

Since they’re not limited to a list of app features, customers can ask for anything, and our system will route the message to a real human who can respond instantly and help them. No form replies or off-site customer service centers here. OwnerListens enables a conversation, not a one-time exchange with a remote, alternating representative. This affords you and your employees the flexibility to confirm their reservation, send a reminder, answer questions, and even upsell other products.

The OwnerListens advantage lies in what we do behind the scenes.

We handle all the backend and route messages to the appropriate recipient (or multiple recipients, if requested) on their personal devices. Employees aren’t tied to a computer system that compiles app inquiries, but we also keep both staff and customers anonymous so everyone’s personal information stays private. You can set up escalation flows, so if a bellman doesn’t respond to a message in a given amount of time, it’s forwarded to the front desk, and so on. Best of all, you’ll have access to your own OwnerListens web dashboard, where you can see all of your organization’s messages alongside a reports feature that allows you to track multiple different metrics.

 

Interested in experiencing OwnerListens for yourself? Sign up today!

 

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