Monday, May 1, 2017

Data Science For Hoteliers - Part 3

There is a growing expectation among consumers for their favorite brands, particularly travel-related, to know and anticipate their every preference or need. Valuable information is gathered on each guest at every step of the booking process and hotel stay. Hoteliers already have access to the data required to effectively offer a truly customized hotel experience to each of their guests at all points of the stay. Including ensuring the appropriate offers are made, in a timely fashion, to the right guests. Unfortunately, each unique customer data point is often times housed in completely separate systems, without streamlined communication and sharing between them.

The solution, once again lies in the cloud. A cloud-driven, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform will enhance the hotel guest experience through greater personalization of services. The vastly different individual preferences of hotel guests, including for example dietary needs and specific allergies, can all be more effectively managed in the cloud. Property Management Systems (PMS) and Central Reservation Systems (CRS) managed from the cloud, can give hotels the real-time flexibility to efficiently leverage today’s travelers who are routinely connected to the internet.

Hoteliers can better build and maintain relationships with their guests; even when they are away from hotel property through a variety of hotel services, such as mobile concierge. In addition, cloud technology can give hotels the capability to effectively establish partnerships with other brands that provide peripheral travel-related services to guests, such as transportation, entertainment, and recreation.

Armed with these cloud technology-driven systems, hotels can provide truly personalized content to their web and mobile customers. Content personalization is built around tracking past viewing history on the hotel website, apps, and elsewhere on the Internet. This can include past online purchases and any reviews which may have been written by the user, combined with demographic and purchase information available from any past hotel stays. Even the geographic location of the user is taken into account. Taken together, this data can result in a truly customized website experience for users.

This has only been made possible by the disruptive innovation brought about by the gathering and analyzing the data in a scalable way. Information on past guests and hotel loyalty program members is easily available to hoteliers. And when combined with the online user data, gives hotels a powerful advantage over the competing online travel agencies and metasearch engines for booking customers directly.

Empowered by these cloud-driven technologies utilizing data science, which hoteliers are beginning to leverage, hotel guest personalization is becoming a powerful tool for hoteliers to build brand loyalty and reap increased direct bookings.

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