When Hotel guests turn critics on social media
This scenario is quite common now. Guests rant on social media about hotel service without saying anything to hotel staff. Guests are often able to strong arm hotels into giving them extra perks using their social media clout as a tool.
Social media has empowered customers and forced businesses to increase their transparency. This is a good thing for it forces hotels to up their service quality. However at the same time it has given birth to a new kind of customer. One which is aware of how damaging a negative commentary on social media can be and the extents to which businesses will go to avoid it. Such customers will hint or demand special services and if their demands are not indulged they will lash out against the hotel on social media.
Dealing with difficult guests and grievances is not something new for hotel managers. It is part of their daily routine. However social media has raised the stakes involved as complaints becomes public knowledge. Many hotel managers come under pressure, especially when complaints instead of being brought to the front desk are posted to the internet from hotel lobbies and rooms.
Hotel managers should be careful on how to respond to such customers.
Using tact to handle social media ambush
- Hotel staff should regularly monitor hotel review sites and famous social networks. Even if the hotel does not have an active presence on them, there is a good chance their guests are frequent visitors there.
- Feedback whether it is positive or negative, it should be responded to fast.
- If the comments are of a negative nature hotel management should strive to get them offline.
- When hotel staffs are replying to negative commentaries and reviews they should follow these steps: Thank, apologize for any inconvenience caused, explain, invite back and follow up with the complaint. No excuses should be made and bribes should never be offered.