Building customer loyalty in the accommodation industry is a dynamic process which requires mutual involvement of the service provider and the consumer. There are different stages in interacting with customers in the travel planning process. Innovative strategies worth creating in each stage can help you create a sustainable loyalty program. A loyal customer base works in cooperation with you for the promotion of your online agency.
If you want to turn your target audience into brand advocates on the Internet, you should first determine which stages you can interact with them in. A study by the CornellUniversity on tourism industry investigates the stages exposed by potential guests and the interaction opportunities. According to this research, a person who wants to travel passes through 4 stages:
Each stage mentioned above can be turned into an interaction opportunity for your online agency. How?
This stage is the decision-making stage for your potential customers. You should offer a virtual experience promise for an effective interaction. To do so, you can make use of the opportunities of visual media, and digital marketing opportunities like banners and “lifestyle” videos. Review sites and links where they can interact with brand representatives are among the strategic approaches recommended for you to articulate the power of your virtual community.
The preparation stage is followed by the stage when they collect information about the place they will travel to. At this point, your potential guests try to create a preliminary experience for themselves by evaluating the posts especially on social media. Your evidence-based sources like photos, videos or comments become valuable at this stage, with support from the community management. Providing clear and substantial references for your customers might be key to a sustainable communication.
After creating demands for your services, there are many points you can convey to your customers in the execution stage. At this point, it will be important to show your technological potential and power of infrastructure and especially to provide innovative applications like mobile check-in. By managing your website, blog or social media accounts like an interactive travel guide, you can inform your customers about touristic attractions and provide a platform where they can share their travel experiences. This is a key opportunity not only for creating an interactive information pool, but also for measuring customer satisfaction.
Reflection is the stage where you can lead the rest of your customers to act like your brand advocates. This last stage is also connected to the preparation stage, thereby creating a cycle. To achieve this, it is important to obtain new substantial evidence at this stage. You might ask your customers to write their comments on your agency’s Facebook page, their personal Twitter accounts or on other channels open to commenting. This way, you can have the chance to bring them together with potential guests who are at the preparation stage.
Customer loyalty can be strengthened through a healthy cycle of communication. Sustainable communication with your potential guests after the decision-making stage will help increase their satisfaction level. This will also contribute considerably to the promotion of your online agency.
You better have a robust infrastructure and a mobile-compatible website to make your customer loyalty program sustainable. HotelRunner is a reliable platform where you can meet your needs easily with customer relations management tools and advanced mobile support. Create your account free of charge now to benefit from the innumerable features of HotelRunner.