Throughout its history, the hospitality industry has continually grown and evolved alongside technology to meet the changing needs of travelers and promote customer loyalty.
Today, the ability of hospitality professionals to adapt and remain innovative is more important than ever before. Hospitality professionals all over the world are wondering, “what is the future of hospitality?”.
10 Industry Experts shared their advice on how hoteliers can stay successful and increase customer loyalty during hospitality’s changing landscape:
1. Shannon Kircher: “Technology is ever-changing and some things that may appear to be threats initially can be opportunities when thought about in the right way. Try to understand tech, think out of the box, and learn from other properties that have taken an innovative approach to adopting tech into customer service, operations and/or marketing initiatives. Tech/automation and personalization don’t have to be at odds – tech can complement an industry that thrives on personalization, can help you better understand your guest, anticipate their needs, and stay top of mind in a sphere that’s always evolving.”
2. Scott Amyx: “Technology in itself is not the disruptor but rather the business strategy that leapfrogs competitors with new business models, products, and services leveraging exponential technologies will rise to the top.”
3. Michael Flaskey: “Your business success rests on building relationships with people – your team members and your guests. Seek avenues that allow you to be innovative and grow, consistently evaluating new ways to reach the buyers of tomorrow and cultivate the top talent that will be paramount to achieving your end goal.”
4. Randa Tukan: “Hoteliers will have to be innovative, with the courage to try, assess, and change/adapt. They need to look outside their immediate industry for inspiration.”
5. Mark Grzankowski: “In my opinion, technology should be leveraged from a customer experience approach. Technology should be used as a communication tool to help connect the guest with the hotel, the brand, and all it has to offer. The technology should be intuitive and user-friendly. If it is content heavy or confusing in any way, guests will quickly become disengaged. It also should not feel overly “pushy”. Any promotions coming through the technology should feel natural and based on a customer’s preferences. Lastly, the technology should be an extension of the customer service provided by employees, not replace them. Technology can enhance the experience for a guest, but guests who opt-out of the technology should not be negatively impacted.”
6. Mona Anita Olsen: “Thriving in the future means evaluating decisions with a frame that includes people, process, and technology.”
7. Rachel Kaplan: “Read everything. Look at what the competition is doing but also look at what like-minded brands are doing. The best way to stay relevant is by learning as much as possible and paying attention to industry trends. In technology, there’s always going to be something new. Don’t be afraid to take risks and try it all – that’s the best way to learn. Tech is so unique because in many cases you can receive feedback instantaneously, which is the best way to learn if something is working or not working for your brand. If it’s not working, you pivot and make a change. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes because the mistakes you make can give you valuable information to enhance your brand.”
8. Isaac Hicks: “Be mindful of what will drive the most long-term profit and don’t be tempted to chase every rabbit.”
9. Alyssa Poniatowski: “Knowing our customers better is the only surefire way to continue to grow. As soon as we stop catering to our guests because we stopped learning about them, we start to lose them and have a much harder time trying to win the back. But, if we keep learning, we can keep growing through being proactive and being able to anticipate needs more effectively.”
10. Dean Minett: “Don’t be too slow to embrace change. We need to be offering guests at least the same technology or better than they have at home.”