Hotel guests have different circumstances and priorities, so hotels need to understand that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to attracting them. In this article, we will break down the main types of guests, provide tips for appealing to each guest type, and offer more general advice for exceeding customer expectations during their stay.
- What is the Hotel Industry?
- Different Types of Hotel Guests and How to Attract Them
- 3 Tips to Exceed Any Hotel Guests Expectations
- Hotel Breakfast: Impress Hotel Guests With Your Breakfast Offerings
- Social Media Strategies to Attract Hotel Guests
What is the Hotel Industry?
It can be useful to begin by explaining precisely what the hotel industry is. In simple terms, this refers to the industry that provides guests with temporary accommodation or lodgings. Businesses within the industry provide hotel guests with overnight stays in exchange for money, but long-term and permanent accommodation falls outside this definition.
With that being said, it is worth highlighting the fact that the hotel industry is usually considered to include all forms of temporary guest accommodation, rather than solely focusing on hotels. This could include resorts, motels, hostels, inns, bed and breakfasts, serviced apartments, guest houses, holiday cottages, and more.
In the article “Hotel Industry: Everything You Need to Know About Hotels!” you will learn more about what the hotel industry is, how it is defined, what separates it from hospitality, and the major trends affecting the industry.
Different Types of Hotel Guests and How to Attract Them
Hotel guests come in many different forms, and one of the big challenges involves using the right hotel marketing strategies to target the right guest type. In the sections below, you can learn about some of the main types of hotel guests that businesses are likely to encounter, as well as some advice on how to appeal to each group.
Business travellers are travellers who are visiting a different location for the purposes of work. They may be travelling to attend business events, conferences, or meetings, and they may need to carry out other work tasks during the day too. This means they are less likely than many other hotel guests to be interested in tourist attractions.
Hotels can appeal to business travellers in a number of ways. The provision of high-speed internet access, for example, can be a major draw, as business travellers may need to participate in online video calls and other activities that require a reliable connection. Conference rooms, work areas, and other facilities can hold strong appeal too.
With that being said, it is essential to focus on their time away from work too. After a long day, business travellers are likely to want a comfortable room, with a few luxuries. It is also a good idea to appeal to corporate guests by highlighting favourable room rates, transport links, local restaurants, the hotel bar, and room service offerings.
For more information on “bleisure travel”, read “What is Bleisure Travel? What Are Bleisure Travellers Looking For?”
Couples and Families
Hotels looking to maximise the number of guests they attract should try to appeal to couples and families, and both of these types are likely to have some specific priorities. For couples, for example, comfortable rooms, a king-size bed, a nice view, and access to nice restaurants can help to make the decision easier.
Families, meanwhile, will often have an obvious idea of what they want to do and when they want to do it. However, it may be possible to appeal to them by providing great value for money on their booking, and this can also be highly beneficial to hotels because they will be filling multiple rooms at the same time.
In some cases, families may be looking for all-inclusive stays, and this gives hotels with excellent food services a significant advantage. The presence of a pool, hotel entertainment options, and nearby attractions that can appeal to children should also feature in marketing materials aimed at hotel guests booking family trips.
Luxury Hotel Guests
As the name suggests, luxury hotel guests are seeking the very best travel experiences and they will spare no expense in order to find the best accommodation. Luxury travellers are high-value customers and are primarily going to be attracted to 5-star hotels, which can provide excellent facilities, exquisite comfort, and a great location.
Many luxury travellers are older adults, and they will often travel with a partner. The aesthetic qualities of a hotel are important, and many of these guests will book their stays through a travel agent or tour operator, which means these distribution channels should be prioritised. The quality of the hotel restaurant can also be a major draw.
Luxury travellers may be aware of the very latest hotel marketing trends, and will have very high expectations. Hotels looking to appeal to these travellers will need to deliver exceptional customer service. At the same time, it can attract luxury guests by highlighting local experiences, attractions, restaurants, and events.
Digital nomads are individuals who make a living by working online but from different locations. They may be business owners, self-employed or freelance workers, or employees of businesses. Regardless of their circumstances, crucially, they are not tied to a fixed location and they carry out their work from wherever they are travelling to.
Digital nomads can work from hotels, hostels, holiday cottages, inns, bed and breakfasts, and almost any other form of temporary accommodation, although reliable internet access is an absolute must and if internet access is slow or wi-fi is not reliably available, it is likely to prevent them from making a booking.
In many cases, digital nomads are technology minded in general, which means they may be attracted to hotels utilising the very latest technology. It can also be useful to have a dependable hotel front office, seamless check-ins and check outs, and IoT devices within hotel rooms. Of course, it should also be understood that digital nomads, like all hotel guests, can also be drawn to an exciting location, great facilities and local attractions.
Health & Wellness Hotel Guests
Health and wellness-focused hotel guests are likely to travel for the purposes of getting away from everyday stress, participating in physical fitness-related activities, or enjoying the peace and quiet. This means that hotels can often target them by highlighting gyms, leisure facilities, and areas where relaxation is possible.
Some properties may have a specific theme, which can be used for marketing. For example, yoga or meditation retreats are a form of accommodation that promote those particular activities. Other hotels, guest houses, and holiday cottages are ideally placed to target those who are interested in hiking, skiing, or other physical activities.
A health-conscious hotel guest is likely to want healthy eating options on-site too. Although these guests do sometimes travel in groups, it is common for wellness travellers to travel on their own. It can, therefore, be sensible to target individual travellers with single rooms, low-cost stays, and all-inclusive deals.
Eco-Conscious Hotel Guests
While there are many benefits associated with the travel industry, a growing number of travellers are becoming increasingly concerned about the environmental effects of their travel and are actively seeking more sustainable offerings. This has led to the rise of eco-friendly hotels, and marketing strategies designed to promote sustainability.
Hotels can appeal to these travellers by highlighting the various steps they have taken to reduce the carbon footprint of their hotel and minimise their usage of natural resources. Hotels using sustainable energy, with solid recycling policies, are at an advantage, while transparency is also important.
Accommodation that is situated close to a railway station can be beneficial, because this can allow eco-conscious hotel guests to travel via train and avoid more environmentally harmful flights or car journeys. As with parts of the restaurant industry, there is also increased demand for ethically sourced food and vegetarian and vegan options.
As a collective group of hotel guests, young travellers share similarities with backpackers, in the sense that they are often extremely budget-conscious and they may be willing to sacrifice in certain areas for a cheap deal. They are generally drawn to locations with an active nightlife, and to cities with plenty of things to do.
Cutting-edge technology within a hotel may appeal to young people, although they are unlikely to be willing to pay premium prices to access it. Many young people travel in groups, so rooms that allow three or four people to share comfortably are likely to hold greater appeal than rooms designed for one or two people.
In general, younger people are likely to want to be able to communicate using online communication tools, and they may wish to share their experiences with friends using social media platforms like Facebook, TikTok and Twitter. This means that free and reliable wi-fi is an especially important service to provide for them.
Backpackers are hotel guests who travel to different locations and live out of their backpack. They are likely to visit multiple locations during their travels, their stays can vary significantly in terms of length, but they are almost always price sensitive, which is why they tend to be drawn to hostels, cheap hotels, and other low cost accommodation.
The focus on price means that backpackers are often happy to make sacrifices and are less likely to be attracted by the very latest hotel trends. Instead, they tend to want the bare minimum in terms of facilities and comfort. They are often willing to share facilities like bathrooms, and upselling and cross-selling efforts are unlikely to work.
Aside from affordable overnight stays, one of the major focus areas for many backpackers is likely to be the provision of free and reliable wi-fi, as this allows them to stay in touch with friends, family, and other travellers. Hotels that are located in areas where they can provide an authentic experience of local food and culture will have a big advantage.
3 Tips to Exceed Any Hotel Guests Expectations
One of the best ways to appeal to guests is to build an excellent reputation, and this can be achieved by consistently exceeding hotel guest expectations. Below, you can find three key tips that will help you with this:
1. Make Check-In a Personal Experience
With hotel check-ins, there are two important things to remember. First of all, you will never have a second chance to make a first impression, and secondly, your hotel guests want to be treated as individuals, rather than just another customer. With these two ideas in mind, one way to exceed customer expectations is to try to make the check-in process personal. Use the information you have about your guests to greet them, provide something that makes them feel welcome, gives your hotel meaning, and sets a positive tone for their stay.
Hotel guests may come to the hotel front desk for advice about where to go and what to see. While many hotels are situated near interesting tourist hotspots, one of the ways a hotel can exceed expectations is by making more nuanced recommendations about local restaurants, sites of interest, or day trips that may be less immediately obvious. This can also help to ensure guests have a unique experience, rather than only covering the standard places that everyone sees.
3. Provide Personalised Communication
Finally, it can be beneficial to try to provide personalised communications over the duration of a hotel guest’s stay. For instance, it may be possible to send them personalised recommendations of activities through the hotel’s own mobile app, or it could be possible for those in charge of front desk hotel operations to follow up with guests on activities that were booked through the hotel. These small, personal touches can help to make guests feel valued and could make them more likely to recommend your hotel to friends and family too.
Breakfast is often said to be the most important meal of the day, and a hotel breakfast can be the ideal way to impress guests and ensure they are eating well during their stay. Hotels can provide many different types of breakfasts, including English, Continental, American, breakfast buffets, and breakfast room service.
In the article “Hotel Breakfast: Types, Overview & Tips to Impress Your Guests” you will learn about the different types of breakfasts hotels offer, and the ways you can inspire hotel guests with a morning meal.
Social Media Strategies to Attract Hotel Guests
An ever greater number of travellers are using social media to learn about hotels, share their experiences with friends and family, and even book their stays. This makes it absolutely essential for hotels to think about the ways they can use social media platforms to attract guests and enhance their reputation online.
In the article “8 Social Media Strategies For Hotels to Engage With Guests” you will be able to find out about competitor tracking, the use of video content, the value of tailoring content to different platforms, and much more.
Different types of hotel guests are available for hotels to attract, but you will need to know how to actually appeal to them. With each hotel guest type, it is important to focus on their top priorities and then design marketing materials and pre-arrival communications that will highlight relevant hotel features.