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A hotel CRM (Customer Relationship Management) states exactly what it does: it manages the relationship you have with your customers.
How does it do that? It combines multiple tools and connections to centralize and manage your hotel’s interactions with each of its customers, regardless of the acquisition channel (hotel website, transactional emails, newsletter, social networks, SMS, satisfaction surveys, etc.).
Are you lost yet?
In order to explain everything more clearly, we will try to clarify the notion of just “CRM” before looking at the meaning of “hotel CRM”.
Hotel CRM: 3 definitions given by experts
To document this article on hotel CRM, we have selected 3 very distinct sources: Wikipedia, Sales Force and Revinate.
The goal was to get 3 different angles:
- A very academic view of the topic;
- A generalized business perspective; and
- A strictly hotel perspective.
WARNING: In order to facilitate reading and understanding, these excerpts from the original texts had to be reworked. These are modifications to facilitate the hotel approach.
The definition of CRM by Wikipedia
Let’s start with the basics by consulting what Wikipedia writes on the subject.
“The use of a CRM is viewed as a business strategy where two key goals are pursued: increasing profits and increasing customer satisfaction.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is the set of tools and techniques designed to capture, process and analyze customer information, with the aim of building customer loyalty by offering or proposing services to them.
It is a process that allows to deal with everything that concerns the identification of customers, the constitution of a knowledge base on the customer, the development of a customer relationship and the improvement of the image of the company and its products with the customer. “
The customer relationship aspect
“Customer Relationship Management will optimize the profitability of the organization and customer satisfaction, focusing on specific customer segments.
It is a matter of giving or restoring an effective and lasting relationship between the customer and his supplier. Customer and supplier become closer.
A mutually beneficial relationship with the customer is established in the long term. The company knows its customers so well that it becomes difficult for its competitors to compete with the quality and high level of its offer. “
“CRM is part of the development of new information and communication technologies. These support the company’s contact personnel when they come into contact with customers via the Internet, the telephone or face to face.
The knowledge of each individual customer is essential to develop a long-lasting relationship with him and to propose an adapted offer. The history of his purchases, his preferred means of communication, his preferred methods of payment, his interests and his preferred services are all information that is strictly necessary to develop long-term relationships. The above information is usually scattered in information systems; and companies usually gather it in a customer database. “
“More and more companies are using CRM software packages, which allow them to manage their contacts (customers, prospects, partners), by filling in personal information provided during interviews, visits or following a purchase. All the information collected is then transcribed into the CRM, allowing the identification and definition of each customer’s profile over the long term and, later, the adaptation and targeting of communication campaigns.
All the CRM functionalities allow to anticipate the marketing calendar according to the characteristics of each customer. “
The definition of CRM by Sales Force
Sales Force is recognized worldwide as the oldest and most important CRM on the market. Of course, it is generalist. But it is still interesting to consider the advantages they put forward:
“Customer Relationship Management – or CRM – is the art of optimizing your company’s interactions with your customers and prospects.
CRM tools help you to focus on the relationship with your customers, your employees and your partners. More than just a sales and marketing tool, it boosts your organization’s productivity when adopted by the entire organization – HR, customer service, supply chain, etc.
CRM keeps track of all your customer interactions. The follow-up and the satisfaction of your customers accelerate the development of your company.
For your business to be effective, your customer relationship data must always be automatically updated, accessible and complete.
The CRM groups each customer and each customer service request. It centralizes all contact details and preferences as well as the history of your customers. This ensures that your conversations are always personalized, relevant and based on up-to-date data. “
Hotel CRM’s meaning by Revinate
Revinate was the first full-featured hotel CRM developed for the hotel industry. Today, its customer base includes thousands of hotels, particularly across the Atlantic. So his view of the business is interesting in answering our basic question, “What is a hotel CRM?”
“Combining data from your PMS with Revinate’s marketing tools to create comprehensive customer profiles on a single platform.
With intelligent customer segmentation, you connect to each of your customers and create automated scenarios specific to each customer.”
“Enable your customers to enhance their stay by offering additional services integrated directly into email or customer follow-up campaigns. “
” Easily create actionable customer segments with customer profile data, surveys, and newsletter responses, and send targeted email campaigns before your customers arrive, onsite, or after their stay.
Create dynamic, recurring campaigns to enhance your email marketing efforts. Create campaigns for transactions, anniversaries, and an endless variety of post-stay emails, including direct book, loyalty, and return offers. “
“Improve online ratings and rankings by increasing the volume of reviews. Survey customers and collect reviews for TripAdvisor or Google to maximize the impact of your reviews. ”
“Revinate Reputation helps you capture, measure and optimize the customer experience, bringing together all online reviews and social media mentions for a single, integrated view. ”
Hotel CRM defined by Experience
Everyone is saying their own thing, but the outline is laid out and clear. A hotel CRM should allow you to:
- Improve customer knowledge;
- Retrieve and centralize all customer data and history on a single interface;
- Improve the customer experience through continuous digital monitoring;
- Improve the customer experience and revenue through additional service sales;
- Implement E-reputation tools (survey, TripAdvisor sharing and tracking);
- Improve customer retention through segmented and automated email campaigns;
- Make each customer feel very close to your hotel.
The hotel CRM defined by the users
When we go back to each of the points, we realize that a hotel CRM is used by a very important part of the staff of a hotel:
- Receptionist & Concierge: the CRM allows them to better understand the customers and their expectations, and therefore improve their relationship with the customers ;
- Revenue Manager & Commercial: it is used to build loyalty, sell additional services and increase the rate of direct bookings via e-mailing campaigns;
General Manager & Owner: it allows them to monitor customer satisfaction and the hotel’s e-reputation.
CRM is no longer optional for hoteliers. This type of tool is widely implemented in other fields, and the hotel industry must catch up.
It is essential to finally have a single platform to manage all customer interactions.
The results are immediately tangible:
- Improved revenues;
- Lower commissions;
- Increased customer satisfaction.
Pepijn Rijvers, Marketing Director of Booking.com, said so himself :
“Every owner should use Booking.com to acquire customers and then try to do everything possible to turn that customer into a loyal live customer.”