How Online Reputation Management, “ORM”, has become key to hotels’ success


Skift Report

“What’s your ORM strategy?”

As a hotelier, this is a question you probably get a lot. What are you doing to manage your online reputation? And, is that strategy successfully helping to increase your revenue? A previously nonexistent concept in the hospitality industry, ORM is now expected to be a primary aspect of a business’s marketing strategy for increasing revenue. But what exactly is this concept? And what does it really mean?

A brief intro to ORM

In short, Online Reputation Management (ORM) refers to the systematic management of customer comments and ratings – it’s your efforts to engage with and take control of online reviews.

Today, travelers methodically turn to online reviews when searching for accommodation, and what they find has a big influence on their decision to book. A successful ORM strategy ensures a strong online reputation, that attracts more guests and ultimately increases overall revenue. The goal is to establish an efficient and effective strategy that brings your business increased revenue!

Some tips for successful ORM

So what are a few ways you can make sure you’re properly managing your reputation?

Are you doing what you need to do to manage your online reputation?

Find out how our solutions can help you to take control of your online reputation. Get a free demo to learn more about how Customer Alliance can help you!

Sign up for your personal free demo right here:




How Online Reputation Management, “ORM”, has become key to hotels’ success

Skift Report

“What’s your ORM strategy?”

As a hotelier, this is a question you probably get a lot. What are you doing to manage your online reputation? And, is that strategy successfully helping to increase your revenue? A previously nonexistent concept in the hospitality industry, ORM is now expected to be a primary aspect of a business’s marketing strategy for increasing revenue. But what exactly is this concept? And what does it really mean?

A brief intro to ORM

In short, Online Reputation Management (ORM) refers to the systematic management of customer comments and ratings – it’s your efforts to engage with and take control of online reviews.

Today, travelers methodically turn to online reviews when searching for accommodation, and what they find has a big influence on their decision to book. A successful ORM strategy ensures a strong online reputation, that attracts more guests and ultimately increases overall revenue. The goal is to establish an efficient and effective strategy that brings your business increased revenue!

Some tips for successful ORM

So what are a few ways you can make sure you’re properly managing your reputation?

    • Don’t shrink from your guests’ reviews! More reviews means that you’re more present across the web, and easier to find. So make sure that your hotel is represented on all the relevant portals.
    • actively collect reviews from your guests, by sending out follow-up emails and encouraging your guests to give you feedback on their stay!
    • Respond to guest feedback – both when it comes to service and communication. Reply to their comments to show them you’re listening; then, take your guests’ feedback to heart when considering areas of improvement.

Are you doing what you need to do to manage your online reputation?

Find out how our solutions can help you to take control of your online reputation. Get a free demo to learn more about how Customer Alliance can help you!

Sign up for your personal free demo right here:




A boost for your visibility – your Customer Alliance reviews now also published on Trivago!

To improve your online reputation effectively in the long-run, you need to take a holistic approach to your review management. It’s not just about collecting and analyzing what your guests and customers have to say about you, what you are great at, and where you need to improve. It is at least as important to focus on the distribution of your reviews to increase your visibility and generate even more valuable reviews in the future.

This is why, for our newest Review Analytics improvement, we focused on increasing your visibility even further. Our Review Analytics software allows you to predefine how many guests are invited to leave their reviews for you on HolidayCheck, Google+, Tripadvisor or Zoover. This already makes for great visibility across all the major review sites.

To increase your visibility even further…

With the travel metasearch engine Trivago gaining more and more trust from travellers searching for the hotel with the best value, it has become even more interesting to make your Customer Alliance rating also visible for travellers using Trivago.

This is why our new interface with Trivago now also allows you to display your Customer Alliance reviews on the world’s largest hotel search – Trivago!

Trivago and Customer Alliance

How does it work?

Displaying your reviews on Trivago – in addition to the integration on your own website – will solely further increase your visibility. And it is important to note that of course no content will be duplicated through this action. Your Customer Alliance reviews will be displayed on Trivago by default. If you however do not want your Customer Alliance reviews be displayed on Trivago you can chose to deselect the option in your “Distribution-Settings”.

The function on your backend is available already and your reviews will start being displayed on Trivago in the upcoming weeks.

Trivago and Customer Alliance

Make sure to increase your visibility and convince your future guests also on Trivago!

Not a Customer Alliance user yet, but interested in improving your online reputation? Get a free live demo with one of our consultants!




Where are you during your Customer’s Journey? Discover the touchpoints you should already be acting on!

You can learn a lot from your guests, particularly when it comes to the things that could make your business more successful. In the hospitality industry of 2015, it has become increasingly important for a hotel to make sure its customers and guests have a smooth booking experience; keeping an eye on your customer’s journey might just be the key to getting you more bookings.
Customer Journey

View the full infographic here!

Take Tobi, the traveller. As a business-owner and millennial, Tobi automatically turns to technology and the internet when looking for a place to stay, whether he be travelling for business or pleasure – sometimes he even likes to combine both!
Customer Journey
At this point in his life, Tobi is a tried and experienced traveller and hotel-booker. He knows what he enjoys as a guest and customer, and knows what aspect of a hotel most speaks to him. So when it comes to finding and booking a hotel, he has his process down. Finding potential hotels with a good sampling of online reviews is an important part of that process. He always starts with some quick research, checking out at least 5 to 7 hotels and their online reviews before settling on a few he likes. Only hotels for which he can find online reviews make it into that list!
How reviews influence Tobi's decision...

But what are the keywords Tobi is looking for? Does the hotel offer all the services he needs?

Customer Journey
Not surprisingly, one of the first things our traveller Tobi likes to look at is the price. But although comparing prices is a very important part of the decision-making process, it’s by no means the only deciding factor. There are a number of keywords Tobi also looks out for, and at the top of that list is “breakfast” (after all, a good breakfast can make or break your day! And a breakfast that’s included with your stay is even better). He also always tries to get a sense of the quality of the hotel’s service.

After all of these things have been taken into consideration (online reviews, price, important services…), Tobi has three hotels left in his list of possibilities.
Customer Journey
Tobi still has to decide where to book, and this is where you hook him or lose him. Tobi likes to book directly from a brand or merchant website. So when a hotel’s website doesn’t have a booking engine, he’ll generally turn to the two hotels that are remaining.
Customer Journey
Tobi often decides to go somewhere for a business meeting or extend his trip at the last minute. In this situation, he likes to be able to book on-the-go, from his smartphone. After all, it’s 2015, and the age of technology. A hotel website that isn’t responsive with smartphones in today’s world gets another black mark. Such a website is more complicated to navigate, and Tobi doesn’t want to bother spending too much time searching for the information he needs.
Customer Journey
He’s left with one option: he turns to the hotel with a responsive website and books his room.

He comes to the hotel and enjoys the service (and breakfast!) he was hoping for, giving you the satisfaction of having made a guest happy. But his customer journey doesn’t end with his check-out!
Tobi enjoys his stay...
When he gets home, he receives an email asking if he would be so kind as to leave a review. With memories of his recent stay fresh in his mind, he decides to do it: he writes the review immediately.

Customer Journey
And the next time another Tobi the traveller starts researching a place to stay in your town, he comes across this same review and is convinced to book as well!

Customer Journey

Check out our Whitepaper “A Customer’s Journey” to find out more about your guest’s customer journey and how you can become more involved in it.

Want to learn about how we can help you? Talk to one of our consultants to find out about our Control Panel.




Get even better guest feedback with your optimized “Questionnaire designer”

As most hoteliers will know, much can be gained from guest feedback. However, getting specific feedback about the topics that most concern you can be tricky. This is where the Review Analytics questionnaire comes into play – you can make sure you’re asking your guests the questions which you want answers to!

Questionnaire

What’s my “Questionnaire designer”?

The improved questionnaire designer makes it even easier for you to set up your questionnaire by presenting your options in a more concise way. You now have three tabs: one for your general settings, one for your questions, and one for your “Thank you” page.

Questionnaire designer

Use your general settings to determine which options you want your guests to see when they’re filling out the questionnaire. Do you want to offer a newsletter sign-up option? Should questions rated on a 5-point scale also have comment fields for guest’s comments? Do you have conditional questions, dependant on previous answers? Set it all up in one place!

In the new “Questions” section, your private and public questions have been merged onto one page. This means that you’ll add the questions meant for informational purposes (whose answers won’t be included in your hotel’s rating) along with the rest of the questions.

Add as many questions as you want, set up conditional questions, determine whether or not they’re mandatory, and so on.

Add question – Questionnaire designer

A clearer setup for a better questionnaire will get you the guest feedback you need to improve your performance! Check out your questionnaire settings to see what it’s looking like and test it out.

Not a Customer Alliance user yet, but interested in improving your online reputation? Get a free live demo with one of our consultants!

 




Let’s talk semantics – a concise look at all of your online reviews

What are you doing well? In which areas do your guests think you need to make improvements? Which topics most come up in your hotel’s reviews?

All of these are important questions, and our semantic analysis helps you get to the bottom of them. With Review Analytics, we at Customer Alliance not only help you manage your online reputation, but we also help you improve that reputation by helping you easily understand what your guests are saying about you.

Let’s face it, guests rarely give you honest feedback at check-out. They might give you an idea of their feelings concerning their stay, but unless they have a big complaint, they won’t say too much more to you in person. It’s not uncommon to be told that “everything was fine, thanks!”, only to find a negative review with details of that same guest’s critiques just a few days later. As frustrating as this might be, it also provides you with a new opportunity to respond to criticism and pin-point your strengths and weaknesses.

For those hoteliers who are willing to face the unpleasantness of online reviews, a lot can be learned – and fixed – from guests’ honest feedback; the fact is that it has never been possible to so improve your processes as it is in today’s age of online reviews. However, not everyone is reacting yet. Taking note of your guest feedback may just get you one step ahead of your competitors.

Getting answers with your semantic analysis

Your semantic analysis helps you get a better idea of your strengths and weaknesses by analyzing the content of your reviews. This analysis permits you to stay aware of the words that most often arise in reviews concerning your hotel, and to know which ones are mentioned in a negative or positive context.

customer-alliance-review-analytics-semantics-word-search

Better focused marketing and better resolved conflicts mean happier guests, and generally more bookings! Your semantic analysis gives you a quick overview of the most important elements of your reviews. This means you can easily be aware of – and thus better address – any issues that might arise, as well as sell your strong points.

customer-alliance-review-analytics-semantics

You can analyze your guests’ feedback without spending hours looking through every single review. All you need to do is act!

A more thorough analysis – looking at your reviews on all portals

Our philosophy here at Customer Alliance is that we can always do even better. In keeping with this, we’ve improved your semantic analysis section. The analysis now looks at reviews from external portals, as well as your Customer Alliance reviews, so that you can draw your conclusions from a complete list of your reviews.

customer-alliance-review-analytics-statistics-semantics-reviews-en

Bringing back your “word cloud” – visualizing your strengths and weaknesses

You spoke and we listened! In response to requests from our customers, we’ve also brought back the word cloud. This word cloud makes your semantic analysis even easier to understand. With color-coding and varied word sizes, this feature gives you the opportunity to visualize exactly which topics come up most often, which ones are mentioned positively and which ones are mentioned negatively.

customer-alliance-review-analytics-semantics-word-cloud

Understanding your semantic analysis and keeping track of your strengths and weaknesses has never been so easy! Now that you know what your guests are talking about, it’s your turn to act. Let’s improve your reputation and get more bookings together! View your “Semantics” section.

Not a Customer Alliance user yet, but interested in improving your online reputation? Get a free live demo with one of our consultants!




Your Excel reports, redesigned – time to evaluate!

Your Excel reports have been restructured and improved! We’ve made some visual changes, as well as added some numbers for you, so you’ll have a more immediate overview of your report as well as some additional information.

What’s the Excel report?

Review Analytics provides you with 3 kinds of reports which detail your reviews and your performance: your email reports, pdf reports and Excel reports.

While you can customize all three, only the Excel reports are editable. This means that you have the chance to personalize them more, by analyzing and processing your data independently.

We know how important it is that you be able to efficiently report to management and communicate results to your team! Your Excel reports permit you to do just that – you can extract data, change the order of the information and highlight and bring to the forefront the elements important to you or to various employees.

What’s new?

With the new layout, you’ll have a more concise overview of your results and your past reviews. You’ll notice a number of visual changes throughout. Here are the most important changes and additions:

  • Combined Excel sheets
    Your Customer Alliance reviews and external portal reviews are now all on the same tab, so you can more easily compare them.
  • Keep track of your evolution
    You have an additional section where you can view the “change in value since previous date”. This means you can now more easily evaluate the progress of your ratings and keep track of whether or not you’re doing better!
    customer-alliance-review-analytics-excel-report-change-value-en
  • View your last 100 reviews
    This was previously only available to you on your pdf reports. Now you can view your last 100 reviews in the Excel in addition to your numbers!
    customer-alliance-review-analytics-excel-report-last-100-en

Check out your new Excel reports in the “Reports” section of your backend!

customer-alliance-review-analytics-excel-report-backend-en

Not a Customer Alliance user yet, but interested in improving your online reputation? Get a free live demo with one of our consultants!

 




More languages for more reviews!

Discover the Review Analytics frontend in Chinese, Japanese and Arabic

We’re excited to be offering 3 new languages for the Review Analytics frontend. With the new languages Chinese, Japanese and Arabic, you’ll now have the opportunity to get more of your past guests to leave reviews, as well as to reach more potential clients across the web and to expand your customer base.

What is the Review Analytics frontend?

Your frontend refers to everything that is visible to your guest. In a nutshell, your Review Analytics frontend combines the touchpoints of your (potential) guests with your reviews. Pre-stay, this means the Widget on your website and your certificate page, which shows the reviews. During their stay, gather immediate feedback with the Instant Survey. Post-stay, you have the post-stay email inviting past guests to leave a review and the Customer Alliance questionnaire they receive along with it.

Before the stay – using your frontend to attract guests and secure more direct bookings

The Widget and certificate page permit you to integrate authentic reviews to your website. In this day and age, prospective guests want to read about other guests’ experiences before making any decisions. Even if they stumble across your website and like your hotel, chances are that they’ll feel the need to go look for reviews elsewhere. They’ll probably end up on an OTA, where they’ll see you listed next to your competitors. This means they might book with your competitors, and if they do still decide to book with you, their reservation ends up costing you in commission fees. The widget and certificate page help you keep guests on your website by providing them with all of the information they need.

After the stay – improving your online reputation by following up with your guests

Your post-stay email gives you the opportunity to follow up with guests after their stay and encourage them to leave a review. As most hoteliers will be very aware, the guests most likely to leave reviews are generally the extremely displeased or extremely delighted. Many guests who have, in fact, enjoyed their stay, won’t leave a review without a little encouragement and reminder to do so. Your post-stay email gives you the opportunity to do just that! And with your customized Customer Alliance questionnaire, you can receive feedback on the aspects of your hotel that are most important to you.

These reviews are automatically displayed on your certificate page, which sets the process in motion again and attracts more new guests!

Why the new languages?

More languages mean that more guests can leave reviews and more potential guests can view those reviews. With the new Chinese, Japanese and Arabic options, you’ll be able to get through to many more guests and open up your hotel to important international markets!

This means that you’ll be more visible across the web and that you’ll increase trust in your website on a wider scale – all things that will help you attract guests and get more direct bookings!

Let’s check it out!

Take a look at what your frontend features will look like with these new languages. We’ve adapted the design to correspond to each language’s readability – check out the results!

Your Widget and Certificate page:

customer-alliance-review-analytics-arabic-chinese-japanese-widget-certificate

Your post-stay email:

customer-alliance-review-analytics-arabic-chinese-japanese-email-invitation

Your questionnaire:

customer-alliance-review-analytics-arabic-chinese-japanese

Not a Customer Alliance user yet, but interested in improving your online reputation? Get a free live demo with one of our consultants!




Wrapping up another ITB

Highlights from this year’s travel trade fair

customer-alliance-itb-2015-welcome

Yet another ITB, come and gone.

Last week, Berlin saw the Messe open its doors for the 49th annual ITB. With over 180 countries present, 10 000 exhibitors and 114 000 visitors, ITB still remains the leading travel trade fair, among the most important events of the year for the tourism and hospitality industry.

For those of you who haven’t been and don’t know what such a trade fair might look like, let’s just say that it’s a very colorful week of talks, exhibitions, and networking, sure to inspire some wanderlust in even the most casual attendee. With countries and companies alike fighting for your attention, the exhibition stands are each more striking and grand than the next, making a statement of their own. There’s everything from countries luring you to their doorstep with tropical forest set-ups (Costa Rica anyone?) or free beer (yes, the UK knows what they have in common with Germany), to airlines offering a 3D virtual experience of a flight (and San Francisco beach!).

A Disney-esque theme park for tourism.

Naturally, we were at this not-to-be missed event. This was the fourth year Customer Alliance has attended, and with an even more beautiful stand and bigger team than ever before, we set out to make our own mark at ITB.

customer-alliance-itb-2015-busy-stand-2

Here’s a recap of our very own ITB highlights:

Talking online reputation management with our COO and co-founder, Torsten Sabel

customer-alliance-itb-2015-torsten-sabel
Torsten gives the ITB hospitality and travel technology crowd some stats and info concerning reviews and online reputation at the Travel Technology Hall’s “eTravel Lab”. Get your camera phones out, hoteliers – great infographics coming up! (Find more information on these topics in our whitepapers)

Unveiling our new product with the Beta-test launch

As a preview of our newest product and preparation for its release, we launched our new beta-test and showed our visitors around our new design. Stay tuned for more on this great and easy product in the coming months!
customer-alliance-itb-2015-moritz-klussmann

Catching up with our international partners

Chatting with some of our international partners about further partnerships and shared ambitions. Always good to see each other in person and catch up on what’s going on, over in those other parts of the world!

Overall, this was a great week of conversation and meetings. Till next year ITB!

For some tips and insights into review and reputation management, check out our whitepapers or sign up for a free demo.




New year, new features for Review Analytics

New statistics

All new features and figures for the new year – Discover what’s new on the Review Analytics backend.

 

Hello and Happy New Year!

Here at Customer Alliance, we’re kicking off the new year with a newly improved Review Analytics for our customers. The new features we’ve implemented make it even easier for business owners to analyse and understand both their customers’ reviews and their own performance. Here’s what’s new on the Review Analytics backend:

    • New date filter in the “Overview” section: business owners will now filter all the visible statistics of their “Overview” by time period, for a more comprehensive analysis of their performance. All statistics shown are now dependent of the date filter.

Review Analytics: new date filter

 

    • New comment rates column on the “Overview” table: business owners can now keep track of exactly what percentage of their customer reviews they are responding to.

Review Analytics: new comment rate column

 

    • New comparison line in the “Average rating of new reviews over time” chart: The new comparison line enables business owners to compare their current performance to their performance at any other point in time.

Review Analytics: comparison line

 

    • Redesign of the “Questionnaire sub-criteria” table: we’ve implemented a more visual chart of sub-criteria ratings. The chart visually divides reviews into positive, neutral and negative, giving business owners a better understanding of what they’re doing well and what they need to improve.

Review Analytics: subcriteria details

 

    • New “Review ratings over time” chart: this new chart enables business owners a better, more immediate understanding of what customers are saying about them, visually dividing reviews into positive, neutral and negative.

Review Analytics: positive reviews

 

Discover the new features now!

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