One of the most effective ways to gain business for your hotel is to focus on increasing revenue from existing customers. Not only is it typically less expensive to retain an existing customer than to acquire a new one, but existing customers are often more receptive to doing business with a company they already know and trust.
At GitGo, we have been engaged by hotel chains, brands, and property portfolios with nearly 50% of their signed accounts inactive for 9 months or longer. This is a vast amount of untapped revenue and missed opportunity. With the right approach, you can close the gap to well below 20% inactive in less than 6 months. You will also create a deeper understanding of your customers that will increase all future sales and marketing effectiveness as you work to grow year-over-year revenue.
Here are some helpful tips for growing revenue from your existing customers:
1. Offer first-time stay benefits: Look for opportunities to incentivize the company, their travelers, and influencers to give the property a try. And then, of course, wow them during their stay so they keep coming back!
2. Stay connected: Stay in contact with your customers on a regular basis by sending them valuable content in the form of newsletters, updates on new products or services, personalized messages to establish yourself as a trusted advisor, and educational content on how-to book discounted rates. This will help keep your business top-of-mind when they are ready to book. Make sure the content you are sharing is valuable and relevant. Use a multi-channel approach to learn their engagement preferences and habits.
3. Do your research: Know the customer, their industry, market, and latest news. Be prepared with high-quality questions when you can connect on the phone or in person. Get a deep understanding of their traveler profile . Then, connect the dots as to how you can assist them based on what is important to them.
4. Do not limit yourself to one point-of-contact: Dig deeper for contacts within all the departments that may travel, and make sure they know you. Ask for referrals. Ask your main point-of-contact who else would benefit from the hotel’s information and how they typically share their preferred partners across the organization.
5. Provide excellent customer service: Make sure your customer service is exceptional so that they feel valued and appreciated. Respond to their inquiries quickly and effectively and go beyond to resolve any issues they may have. Share traveler and company info with operations staff so they recognize the travelers, show appreciation, and put their best foot forward.
6. Be memorable: Chances are they have partnerships with multiple hotels in your market. Get creative in how you communicate but be professional. The feedback we have heard from clients is that they don’t care to be smothered with gifts and over-the-top sales tactics. That’s fun, but what really stands out is value. They want professional partnerships that can anticipate needs, show empathy and understanding of their challenges and provide valuable, reliable, and relevant solutions.
If you have more than 20% of your accounts that have gone dormant, it’s important to build an accelerated process for consistent and appropriate connection. At GitGo we recommend a collaborative approach with sales and marketing outreach. For more information, visit www.gitgogroup.com or reach out to us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.