Ghosting is never a good look. If your hotel has closed completely due to the coronavirus, now is not the time for radio silence. With millions of travelers confined to their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic, people are likely daydreaming about travel or looking for entertainment from brands they admire.
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What a wild two months that hotel and resort reservations sales agents have endured, as agents were the first to feel the impact of the COVID19 pandemic, as suddenly a tsunami of cancellation calls and emails flooded the phone lines and inboxes. How painful it must have been to watch hard-fought bookings cancel and to see the flow of revenue change direction. Even more so, these staffers have endured difficult conversations about the fine print of cancellation terms, travel insurance, and the true implications of booking through third-party OTAs. Next, it was surely hard to watch as co-workers from operations were furloughed or laid off.
Using CRM to reopen and engage with every guest
A time will come, hopefully sooner rather than later, that the end social distancing phase emerges on the horizon. The trickle of phone inquiries will start to grow into a stream and eventually a flood. Smart revenue and marketing leaders will get their teams ready now during the interim.
After the brutal shock to the travel industry due to the coronavirus crisis, the vast majority of hotels stopped or questioned all their investments in online marketing, mainly Google Ads and metasearch.
This week, KTN is introducing two hotel sales training programs, personally delivered live on webcam by KTN President Doug Kennedy, directly for your hotel sales team, each of whom is also asked to be on webcam. Doug is an experienced webcaster and vlogger, presenting from the KTN office studio. Rather than being a one-way lecture-style webcast, Doug uses activities and exercises to engage and involve your team.
The lesson here for any company is that holistic brand management should be the new marketing.
With the large bulk of bookings at your hotel coming from the world wide web, implementing a strategy around your hotel email marketing is critical. Gone are the days of agents making inbound phone reservations. With phone reservations, it allows the agent to build a relationship using voice interaction and personality. Generating less phone reservations in 2020, automated and personalized communication is the key via email blasts.
A pair of studies conducted in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis reveal two hopeful facts for organizations weighing the risks and opportunities of marketing during a global pandemic: 1) consumers still want to hear from brands; and 2) more Americans than not believe advertisers should carry on as normal. The crucial question is, what messages should brands communicate – and how?