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Millennials have a track record of seemingly favoring disrupters like Uber and Airbnb, but a new study shows they overwhelmingly prefer full-service hotels to short-term apartment rentals by a margin of more than 2-to-1. This is great news for hotels as the same study notes that Millennials, between the ages of 20 to 26, are projected to have $200 billion in spending this year alone. (Montevago, 2018)
While Millennials may also be called the “the smartphone generation”, the reality is that with 2.5 billion smartphones in the world and 80% of U.S. adults owning a smartphone, most U.S. travelers are part of the smartphone generation.
So, how does a hotel engage with the smartphone generation? The obvious statement is on their smartphone of course, but what if that is not possible or where the guests want to engage? What if the guests don’t have the hotel app, aren’t in a loyalty program, or haven’t visited the hotel website? Phocuswright says the OTA U.S. travel market share will reach 41% by 2020. That means many guests show up at check-in knowing little about what the hotel or brand may offer for services.
This could pose a real problem around connecting with a guest or an opportunity. While the guest is at the hotel, there are numerous ways to educate, inform, and entertain the guest away from their smartphone.
By providing relevant content that anticipates a guest’s needs in highly visible spaces, the hotel is helping curate a positive experience for the guest. The key word being relevant. In most retail advertising studies, there is between 4 and 7 seconds to capture the attention of a viewer. If the hotel content is stale, the hotel has lost the ‘engagement moment’.
By thinking of spaces in the hotel as engagement opportunities, the hotel has numerous ways to connect with a guest. A simple example is when a guest is thinking of having a meal. Let the guest know about dining options at the proper time of day. Advertising breakfast in the late afternoon, doesn’t create interest in your bar menu or dinner options. If there are new specialty items in the grab-and-go, let the guest know!
What about activities? Golf on a day that is pouring rain or the course is being used for an event is a miss, but are there spa appointments open?
While the guest may fail to connect with the hotel on their smartphone, hotels have plenty of opportunities to reach them in other ways that are fairly easy to execute with the right technology.
If you want more information on Uniguest’s Digital Signage solutions and how we can not only assist in providing your guests with an outstanding stay at your property, but provide your guests with exceptional cybersecurity protection, click here.
As we begin the New Year in 2019, it is important to reflect on the amazing progress the Uniguest team made in 2018 as we strive to be the most trusted technology provider for the public space by delivering across our three pillars: 1) best-in-class cybersecurity, 2) excellence in managed services, and 3) increased engagement for our customers’ customers.
2018 was a banner year for the Uniguest team – we increased bookings by more than 40%, maintained a world-class Net Promoter Score, acquired a preeminent digital signage provider, and continued the roll out of a new arsenal of products.
Uniguest increased YoY bookings in 2018 by over 40% allowing us to continue our expansion into new properties and new markets. We now support well over 30,000 managed solutions across the globe and have provided more than 90,000 digital signage solutions.
Our managed services team continued to provide customers with world-class service as demonstrated by 99.96% uptime of systems while blocking thousands of security attacks aimed at our customers. In 2018, Uniguest released its Net Promoter Score program allowing us to quantitatively track customer experience and satisfaction. We are currently operating at a +75 score which reflects the service commitment that our customers have come to expect from the Uniguest team.
In May of 2018, Uniguest finalized the ONELAN acquisition which added 90,000 digital signs to our portfolio, grew our footprint so that we are now in over 100 countries, gave us a strong presence in new industries, and connected us with a global network of partners to expand our go-to-market abilities. Most importantly, the ONELAN team is made up of great people who are a superb fit with the broader Uniguest team. Now with nearly 250 employees, the Uniguest culture is a huge asset to the company.
In addition to adding industry-leading digital signage solutions to our portfolio, we added tablet products for multiple market segments and meeting room technology with a wide range of features. We overhauled our digital concierge solution and made it compelling to all hospitality chain scale segments. We also expanded our fitness products to support new markets and new functional purposes.
Entering 2019, we have huge aspirations starting with the continued commitment to be the provider of choice for public space technology in our markets. We are investing heavily in new talent to increase our thought leadership and execution abilities in our markets. We are committed to continuing to innovate and execute for our customers.
I hope everyone has had a great start to 2019 and we are excited to continue on the Uniguest journey. Good luck to all in 2019!