Now that you have successfully gotten guests to download your app, it’s time to unleash the true potential that the mobile app technology presents.
Not only is a dedicated mobile app a convenience for your guests, but also a powerful way for you to communicate the right messages at the right time, thus increasing your revenue per guest over time through incremental purchases. The possibilities are endless and only limited by your own creativity and marketing gusto.
Though Guest Express offers several handy features to help your property connect with guests, the push notification feature is easily one of the most effective ways to get your messages in front of a qualified audience.
The key to reaching this audience is to give them a reason to allow push notifications. We’ve all seen this pop up when using a new app for the first time. Though the thought of overcoming this initial barrier might seem daunting – fret not. As long as you clearly communicate the value of what you have to say and you do not abuse your power, people are actually happy to leave the line of communication open.
A recent study suggests that ~45% of smartphone users will opt-in for app notifications for travel related services. Though this rate is lower than more time-sensitive services, like ride sharing and food and beverage, this still represents a significant portion of your customer base.
Top performing push notifications for hotel apps:
Does your hotel offer an on-site restaurant or bar with happy hour? Does your property offer on-site entertainment? Are there other unique aspects that your hotel can tout via a personalized message? Reminders about the exciting events or differentiators your property offers are a great way to not only inform a warm audience but to also gently nudge them to take advantage. Typically, these “reminders” are pre-scheduled and automatically send to each specified segment. These “set it and forget” it messages are great ways to generate awareness and additional revenue.
“Cheers to your stay in Charlotte! Enjoy $3 local brews, $5 wines, $ 7 appetizers at happy hour from 4 pm – 7 pm.”
- Late Check-Out Message, sent on 9 pm the night before departure:
“Wake up refreshed. Extend your stay – late check-out is available for only $25.”
- Event promotion, every Wednesday at noon:
“Chief Kamu fire show is tonight on the pool deck! Free to attend, $10 / plate for kid-friendly luau dinner. The fun starts at 6!”
Flexible Offers & Incentives
Flexible offers and incentives are the perfect way to fill in voids or soft spots throughout the week. Rather than scheduling each message, our easy to use app interface makes it easy to pop in on a moment’s notice and send out a quick message to either bulk lists or more segmented groups. Offering an incentive often works well with short notice and time sensitive promotions.
- Happy Hour, $5 Discount.
“Happy Friday! Stop by The Anchor Cafe for $5 off any drink or appetizer of your choice! Today only from 4 pm – 8 pm.”
- Late Check-Out, Discount.
“It’s your lucky day! Hit snooze and enjoy late check-out, now available for only $15.”
- Additional Day, Discount.
“Get out and enjoy everything that Charlotte has to offer. Stay an extra night for only $75!”
These “one off” messages are ideal for filling gaps in your hotel, whether it be a slow dinner shift or a soft mid-week night that could use a boost.
In addition to gentle nudges and reminders to incentivize your guests to spend more while they are on property, push notifications will also come in handy when it comes to measuring guest satisfaction, which, as we know, can go a long way to increase your hotel’s reviews and online ratings, thus increasing your ADR over time. Satisfaction notifications can be sent post-check-in to make sure the room is clean and your guest is happy or post-check-out to ensure the guest had an exceptional experience. Surveys send on property are a great way to run interference on any potential issues before they become bigger issues and show up on your TripAdvisor wall and post-stay surveys are a great way to solicit positive reviews for your review channels.
The key to success with app push notifications is to not over-do it. Keep a close eye on what you already have scheduled and how much you are messaging your guests to balance the line of communication without being overbearing.
Also, keep in mind that the user-friendly app interface allows you to quickly and easily adjust your approach. For example, a busy summer destination might not want to push late check-outs during hectic summer months but could greatly benefit from the additional revenue during the empty off-season.
And, always be testing! What works well for one hotel would certainly not work for every hotel. It is important to have a solid understanding of your guests and their travel behaviors before you revert back to the dreaded “spray and pray” methods of marketing. Try new messages, measure your results, and see what’s working for your individual property.
Want to see these push notifications in action?