While the hospitality industry has been hit hard by the pandemic, there are some strategies establishments (restaurants and hotels) can use to keep customers engaged with their brand. Establishments choosing not to close up need to adopt the right strategies if they are going to survive this ongoing crisis.
While experts believe that the industry will make a strong recovery, it will be a while before it happens. So, it falls to establishments to devise clear strategies that will help them survive this tough time until the situation improves.
Here are a few strategies you can use with a hospitality EPOS solution.
While no one strategy works for every establishment, here are some ideas that would help them navigate this tough time.
Hotels and restaurants should maintain contact with some of their most loyal customers. Sending messages would keep your establishment in their thoughts, so once the ban on gatherings is lifted, they are more likely to visit your establishment. However, how do establishments identify their most loyal customers?
A hospitality EPOS solution can help identify the most loyal customers. The system collects and analyses customer data based on different modules to identify the most frequent visitors. Furthermore, the system can facilitate communication with customers via texting and email.
However, it’s not just the case of sending messages. It is also a case of providing value to customers. Restaurants are well placed for this because they can offer food deliveries with a discount. Hotels can think about sending tips and tricks on laundry or cleaning dishware.
But how can restaurants and hotels identify what will resonate with their most valuable customers? This is where hospitality EPOS comes in handy. The right systems features analytics capabilities to analyse data on key variables like customer demographics and popular choices.
Adding value to your customer’s lives is going to be crucial during this time because it helps with brand awareness, recognition and value.
There will come a time when customers have the urge to travel again. During this time, it’s important to ramp up marketing efforts to guide them into a booking or reservation funnel.
While not the only system available to establishments, hotels and restaurants can use hospitality EPOS to aid in the booking process because it can identify the best customers to reach out to with discounts and incentives.
Establishments will have to make changes to their booking policy. With the ban on gatherings, many customers would have no choice but to cancel their reservations. Offering an easy, convenient method for future bookings (and to back out when they need to) will build a sense of loyalty.
For example, for customers who have cancelled, you can encourage them to book a future stay or feature a complimentary bonus to incentivise purchase for another time.
Hotels and restaurants should think about what not to do. During this time, it can be easy for hotels to take drastic measures, like applying discounts across the board. However, while some austerity measures will help in this situation, most are not going to reverse fortunes overnight.
Discounting can be an effective tool for keeping customers engaged, but not if it’s done for everything across the board. If discounting is done incorrectly, it would set back businesses for years.
Lowering prices can be helpful during tough times like this one, provided it’s done in a way that generates genuine value for customers. The best way to plan a discount scheme is to use the data collected by hospitality EPOS software.
As hotels see guests cancel, it’s tempting to reduce the scope and scale of services. However, this would be a mistake because it will damage your brand’s image in the long run. Instead, the best thing to do is focus on providing value to customers.
A hospitality EPOS solution can help with the reassessment of services because of its analytics capabilities. You can use the data to ensure that you are properly targeting the right people.
Times are hard for hotels and restaurants, but the best thing to do at this stage is to plan out the strategy to bring guests back to the establishment when the time is right. Hospitality EPOS systems are often versatile tools that can be very useful because they contain vital information that can be used to communicate with loyal customers and provide value, both in the short-term and long-term.