Online Reputation Management (ORM) is not an isolated case anymore, however much some hoteliers refuse to believe it; its influence extends to all levels, affecting sales and business development, ORM should be seen as a central cog of a hotels daily operations.
Hotelnewsnow agrees, as does our subject specialist Gastón Richter. He confirms what the publication claims, stating that it is necessary to create a strategy that allows professionals in the sector to face clients’ opinions with security and a high degree of involvement.
It is important to remember that the answer a hotel provides is a lot more relevant than the comment the client publishes. The establishment’s level of commitment and concern for guest satisfaction can be seen in their answer
Richter also recommends answers with two purposes: first answer the client who has written the comment but also provide information for possible future guests. “A good answer will not only neutralize the client’s complaints, but will also convince other readers (therefore prospective clients) that the supposed problem that was publicly exposed by the guest has been resolved for good”.
It is essential, in some cases, to clear up the exact circumstances behind a particular incident so others understand the context of the complaint. “If the client hasn’t done so in their comment, the hoteliers’ answer must provide all the needed explanations”. He adds:
The task of responding to public client comments – at first glance a simple, routine task – deserves a lot more attention from the establishment’s management. In fact, it should be one of the main tasks within any hotel’s communication plan
A section must be set aside that will develop techniques aimed at maintaining or improving the hotel’s position on this kind of page.
In other words, online reputation should not just involve giving quick and efficient answers to complaints. Rather, this area gives hoteliers a chance to gauge the level of products and services they offer, it is a free advertising platform.
It is all about changing attitude and mentality. If user comments are negative, being led by ones first inclination and beginning a war of words with the client is absurd. The most advisable course of action is to answer calmly and peacefully, understanding that most of the time; criticism can be viewed as constructive.
At Innwise, we consider that the Guest Experience starts the moment a prospective client reads a hotel’s answers on travel websites. These answers are a crucial element of what they will come to expect, and therefore what they will experience when actually staying at the hotel.