There’s no denying the growing threat the Coronavirus poses to all aspects of our lives. As the infection count rises and further restrictions are applied to travel, events, and large-scale public gatherings, the hospitality industry will suffer in the short- to medium-term. How you react now will help mitigate any damage to your business in the long-term.
Communication is crucial to any business, but in a times of crisis, it is more important than ever. With hourly updates and widespread misinformation on the situation, it is essential to reassure guests. Remind them that all the necessary health and safety precautions are in place across your property. Regularly update information sheets, checklists, and guidelines on your website, front desk, and social media channels. Provide updated FAQs and points of contact where COVID-19 queries may be handled, be it online or over the phone. Keep members of staff updated. If they are well-informed, they will assist in transmitting messages of reassurance to guests.
Focus on the long-term and prepare for inevitable recovery. This too shall pass. It is simply a case of remaining safe, calm, informed, and considered in the meantime.
Reassure guests that have already booked (or those considering booking) by highlighting more flexible terms. Consider reviewing all advertised packages and offers to highlight those that are “Pay Nothing Now” or “Free Cancellations”.
We are all upping the ante on housekeeping. Follow suit by taking thorough sweep across your business practices, promotional material, website, and product offerings. Take some time to work with your team to define and implement a path to recovery. Optimise and enhance all areas you can to ensure you are ready to get back to growth, as soon as the time comes.
Keeping in mind that this crisis is a threat to life, reconsider the message in your marketing campaigns. Add a more human touch. Look to reassure. Look to the future. Plan for the long-term, whilst managing your current campaigns and messages on a daily basis, ensuring they adapt as the situation progresses.
Promote Your Voucher Offering
Extend the validity of vouchers so that customers are reassured and can redeem their vouchers whenever is most suitable. Consider adding in extra offerings such as chocolates, prosecco, or dinner for two.
Hold Your Nerve
Try to avoid dramatic discounts. Instead, focus on added value, loyalty campaigns, book direct to reduce the cost of acquisition, staycations, and early booking campaigns. Promote booking now for Summer, Autumn or Winter 2020. For those who cancel, aside from not applying any financial penalty, consider offering an added reward if they decide to re-book at at later date.
It’s Good to Talk
Keep in touch with your digital partners to avail of the support they can provide. Together, we will see each other through this time of crisis.
All the team at The Brand Mix want to wish our colleagues in the hospitality industry all the best. Rest assured, we are here to help in any way we can. We are committed to supporting you and your team during this time of uncertainty.