19 thoughts on “Hotel Mobile Marketing – A Hotel Guest Story From The Near Future”

  1. Inspiring and thought provoking. Thanks for opening my mind to many future possibilities. Question: How do developers of properties become more educated on these insights into the future way of doing business?

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  2. I think that this is a very thoughtful article. However it is crucial to consider that most of the technology mentioned above is expensive and the percentage of the target market is very less due to which its a risky process to continue with.

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  3. Hi Utsav – Thanks for your comment. So as you rightly say, some of these services mentioned, such as the integration of NFC systems so that consumers can swipe their phones across their keycard reader to gain entry to their room, are currently priced at a premium and are only applicable to a small percentage of handsets outside of the Far East. However, the costs for nearly all of other elements mentioned, such as the browsing of the internet on a mobile phone, the sending of an SMS to request information and tickets to be sent back to your handset, the ability to take a picture of a QR code and then have content and information delivered to your phone etc, have significantly reduced in the past 5 years, ironically as the audience who do use these functions on their phones have increased.

    In regards to the volume of consumers who can participate in the services described. As mentioned, whereas it’s true that only a small percentage of consumers would be able to use their phones to swipe to get entry into the room, in most other regions, consumers can browse the internet on their mobile phone, send SMS messages, call a number to find out a song title (If you’re in the UK, call 2580 and hold up your phone to any song to find out what the song’s called and who’s it by, which is a very cool service provided by a company called Shazam). QR code readers are installed on most of the latest Nokia phones and most manufacturers are installing them on all their latest handset releases.
    The point I’m trying to make is that consumers are starting to wake up to what they can do on their phone and a range of brands have been launching promotions, campaigns and services that utilise these opportunities to reach and enhance their brand experience with their consumer.
    If you’re still not convinced, Marriott international inc recently announced they’d generated $1.25m in gross hotel bookings in the first 100 days of launch since the chain announced direct mobile web bookings.
    http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/commerce/2358.html

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  4. Hi there. Thank you for the reply. The type of consumers mentioned in this article, are they traveling with a business purpose, leisure purpose? The point I am trying to highlight is, that different guests tend to spend time depending on the purpose of their visit in a hotel. For example guests staying in a hotel for a business meeting would be less interested in knowing the different places to visit, or night clubs etc. Whereas a guest who has come on a holiday would spend more time browsing a hotel’s website, hence using its different amenities. Therefore it is advantageous for the hotels to consider their target market and then implement the following technologies.

    Its good to know that the sales of Marriott had increased due to the mobile advertisement channel, but it still it should be considered that not all the hotels would opt for a mobile based advertisement. For example in countries like Switzerland people are still using Fidelio to book rooms, whereas hotels in other countries have advanced to much better software. So the big question is, whether all the guests are ready to use the mobile booking facility or is it us who are trying to force the guests to become more tech friendly and cut off the relation b/w the guest and the staff.

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  5. Interesting Read
    If anyone is interested we have the licence for a product called J Mango.JMango is a rapid mobile application development and delivery platform that improves mobile internet transactions by executing multi-step tasks usually confined to the internet through a series of text based interfaces. Information is refreshed when the application is selected and then presented in a way that users can quickly navigate using only a few keystrokes. The users selections are stored on their phone and JMango only connects to the internet when the information is complete making for a much improved user experience.It works across all mobiles and balckberrys.
    Once downloaded to a mobile phone JMango also provides a powerful branded channel as unlike general mobile internet applications by sending an sms to the phone the application can be ‘woken up’ for outbound marketing such as events and special offers.
    Key features
     Ease of use – text based interface and speed of navigation/execution
     Users can be engaged by pushing marketing information to them to increase sales (evidence from similar applications show 10% increase)
     Ease of development and deployment – can be bolted on to clients existing back end systems
     Speed and cost for application development – applications can be developed by us or ‘in house’ and deployed in a matter of weeks
     Low usage costs
    This is ideal for ticketing and booking solutions ( we have already used QR for ticketing for events in Australia) as well as the travel sector. We are developing a ‘travel buddy’ solution which effectively delivers booking information, itinerary, google map, local information (restaurants theatre) much as described in Matt’s article, and also has applications for post visit eg for customer research, discount vouchers etc.
    MK

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  6. Mobile interaction like this is already happening with all of the iPhone apps, and I think it would be very beneficial for hotels to pick up on this trend and take advantage. Today’s mobile world is all about convenience and information at your fingertips, especially when traveling! It would save a lot of travel headaches if you could book and organize everything and get reminders through your phone!

    Alex

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  7. Hi Matt,

    Very interesting article I must say. The possibilities seem endless in this domain. In 2007 I participated in Annual Innovation Challenge where we had to solve a similar problem for Hilton Hotels and our team recommended exactly the solution that you mentioned in the article. Using mobile based application for online checkin, reservations and mobile based entry to rooms.

    I am not surprised by the numbers from Marriott as I think these kind of services are particularly useful for VIP and high revenue generating customers of hotels.

    What are your thoughts on trends in guest service systems that hotels use (such as http://www.compcierge.com/)?

    Tarun

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  8. This is a great illustration of a new kind of guest interaction and the use of technology.As a hospitality provider this is the first step to welcoming and retaining new guest. In this down market it is a blessing to have such acquisition.Can someone imagine with this new networking ,almost every single person with a modern cell phone will welcom this new approch, minimize the waiting time at the front desk.Thank you for sharing this experience .

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  9. Hospitality products and its evolving services are generally intended to provide additional comfort and convenience. Therefore, any new or improvised product, service and or technology that can enhance the quality of items on offer must be welcomed and encouraged. Introducing such items are always expensive in the beginning. It is hightime that large chain-hotel operators and independent hotel operators form unions for their commong agenda/goals through which they can approach product and service providers who have global reach for new/improvised items at reasonable prices that all consumers and intermediaries can benefit. Once technology is known or introduced, one can take the lead, but cannot sustain the supremacy since others will shortly follow with improvised version(s). It is cost and complexity that induce many hoteliers to shy away from adopting some useful technologies. Therefore consumer cartels are also important to challenge monopoly.

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  10. Hey! This is kind of off topic but I need some advice from
    an established blog. Is it very hard to set up your own blog?
    I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick. I’m thinking about creating
    my own but I’m not sure where to begin. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Thank you

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