Management

Customer Engagement Key to Weathering Economic Downturn for Hotel Chains, according to PeopleMetrics 2008 Study

PeopleMetrics Most Engaged Customer study for the hotel sector found that hotels that do a better job of engaging their guests also have better financial results than those with low engagement scores.

HTrends At a time when business and personal travel budgets are being slashed, a focus on guest engagement is key to surviving the economic downturn.

PeopleMetrics used feedback from 800 guests across seven hotel chains to draw its conclusions. The hotel chains that were examined included: Choice Hotels, the Four Seasons, Hilton, Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, Starwood, and Wyndham.

PeopleMetrics Customer Engagement ranking is determined by measuring behavioral and emotional elements of customers' experiences in the hotel environment. In particular, an engaged hotel guest will 'agree' or 'strongly agree' with statements related to customers' intention to promote, come back, seek out, and feel passion (even love) for the hotel and its brand.

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Customer Engagement in the hotel industry is impacted by a combination of functional (convenience, cleanliness, choice, efficiency) and emotional (feeling valued, having fun, trusting in the consistency of service delivery) elements of the guest experience.

One strong driver of customer engagement in the study was the interaction between hotel guests and employees. Hotel chains whose employees make the guests' experiences positive and memorable had more engaged guests.

'In service sector industries engaging employees is a great place to start for improving business outcomes,' according to lead researcher of PeopleMetrics study, Kate Feather. 'Hotel chains with dynamic, motivated and engaged employees will create better experiences for their hotel guests and better operating results for the hotel chain.'

The PeopleMetrics Most Engaged Customers study looked at 100 brands across the Hotel, Retail, Banking and Casual Dining sectors and ranked Customer Engagement based on feedback from approximately 10,000 customers throughout the United States. This study will be conducted on an annual basis.

To receive the results of PeopleMetrics 2008 Most Engaged Customers study, contact Frank Rowe, PeopleMetrics Vice President, frowe@people-metrics.com or (215) 979-8030.



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