Outperforming Rivals through Online Feedback
By Bernard Perrine CEO & Co-Founder, SocialCentiv | October 18, 2015
With great challenges come great opportunities. And right now, hotel properties worldwide are facing a great challenge. The issue is dealing with the reputations they have in cyberspace, whether on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter or travel review sites like TripAdvisor.
In one 2012 academic study, 65 percent of respondents reported making at least one change to travel plans because of reviews or comments they had seen on social media web sites. The online reputations hotel properties develop can have significant impacts on their financial performances – for better or for worse.
University of Michigan researchers reported in 2013 that by increasing their TripAdvisor rating by one point, properties could also increase their average daily room rate by $10. Conversely, negative reviews flat out remove hotels from the options that consumers will consider, according to SAS and Penn State University.
The lesson for hotels – and, by extension, the opportunity they have – is two-fold.
On the one hand, hotel properties and chains alike must monitor online chatter and respond when appropriate. TripAdvisor reported in 2014 that hotels that provide management responses to reviews are 21 percent more likely to receive a booking inquiry via that web site than those that fail to provide responses.
Yet according to Revinate, hotels worldwide responded to only 35.6 percent of the 12.8 million reviews posted about them last year. To be sure, that marked an improvement from 2013, when hotels responded to only 28.4 percent of the 11.6 million reviews that travelers put on the web.