Engage, Impress, Repeat: How Indonesian Hotels Can Attract Guests in a Digital World

Engage, Impress, Repeat: How Indonesian Hotels Can Attract Guests in a Digital World

Written by IDeaS

In a highly competitive digital booking environment, the significance of customer engagement and reputation management cannot be overstated. As Indonesian hoteliers navigate the complexities of engaging with guests in 2024, the importance of social media, online feedback channels, and guest communication is becoming increasingly clear.

A hotel's digital reputation not only directly influences guest choices, but positive online sentiment can also support revenue growth and business outcomes for hotels. Making the most of a hotel’s revenue potential takes more than pricing strategies and automated revenue management tools – property’s need an effective digital presence to maintain a competitive edge.

So, how can Indonesian hotels establish and maintain a strong digital presence? What steps can they take to connect with guests and grow revenues through a positive reputation online?

Turn online commentary into business outcomes

While some Indonesian hoteliers remain reluctant to actively engage with the wider community on social media, it does not mean conversations about their hotel are not happening in their absence.

And whether guest complaints are fair to your property or not, it's important to at least provide a polite response to demonstrate attentiveness and engage with customers.

Engage, Impress, Repeat: How Indonesian Hotels Can Attract Guests in a Digital World

Hoteliers who monitor online discussions about their properties and respond appropriately can reap significant benefits. For example, if a reoccurring theme in social media feedback points to issues with the check-in process being disorganised or congested, the operations team could intervene by deploying additional staff to alleviate bottlenecks, providing a resolution that creates a better guest experience.

Online review platforms and social media serve as crucial sources for gathering feedback and insights on guest experiences, which, combined with continuous competitor analysis, can guide hotels in making informed decisions about their marketing and pricing strategies. For instance, if a hotel is rated highly, and the majority of comments relate to the describe hotel location and design of rooms, the marketing department will have the opportunity to build on these positive reviews. Revenue managers should also consider strengthening the pricing position of their rooms based on positive online sentiment, especially as studies indicate that any positive reputation increase will bring positive price change.

Social media engagement is essential for broadening and enhancing an online presence, enabling hotels to connect with new guests and gain competitive advantage. Hoteliers should evaluate the social media activity of their competitors – examining the frequency of their posts and their engagement rates compared to their own.

Create campaigns that appeal to the digital native

To succeed in digital booking settings, hotels must ensure that they have the right technologies in place – including pricing and reputation tools—and also reevaluate their guest acquisition strategies.

Properties keen to attract digitally savvy guests can maximise their appeal through improving their online presence and offering up accommodation packages that appeal to this market. This can be done through matching the look and feel of the hotel’s website and social media feeds to the visuals (design, photography, and video) styles that appeal to younger travellers, while also better targeting relevant key words for search engine optimization (SEO). Hotel packages that combine rooms with a F&B package, or entertainment tickets can be particularly appealing to digitally savvy, experience-driven millennial guests, who often prioritise the experience associated with their travels over the destination itself.

Engage, Impress, Repeat: How Indonesian Hotels Can Attract Guests in a Digital World

To improve a hotel’s online reputation and harness peer reviews that actively promote the property as a desirable location to stay, hoteliers may also consider enacting customer advocacy programmes. These programs could incentivise guests to post their experiences online by offering them rewards or discounts on future bookings, or the chance to win a free stay. These incentives are designed to motivate guests who had positive experiences to share their views of the hotel online, influencing online travellers to consider becoming future guests.

Facilitate and encourage guest feedback

Today's guests expect immediate interactions and responses when engaging with a brand about their experience. Nowadays, guests are less inclined to dedicate time to evaluating and thoroughly reviewing their stay after departing from a hotel. Indeed, those that do leave reviews tend to have had a negative experience, which could result in a damaging brand reputation. Guests often prefer to communicate with a hotel and influence their stay while it's still happening, rather than after it has concluded. This can be a positive for a hotel, as any negative experiences a guest is having can be surfaced while they are still at the property and management then has the opportunity to remedy the situation to reshape the guest experience and perception.

To enable this functionality and communication with guests, hotels need to modernise their communication systems to enable direct feedback opportunities—especially via text as many guests won’t call the front desk specifically. Two-way chat capabilities within a hotel app for current guests can provide a platform for connecting with people and encourage those who stay to become part of the hotel brand’s guest ecosystem.

What is said online matters

In a digital booking environment, even loyal guests are more likely to shop for the best room prices. Having a rating below three stars online can mean that guests with a potentially favourable view of a property or hotel brand won’t even consider it an option, risking the hotel being bypassed by new guests before they have the chance to become repeat customers.

In this competitive online environment, hoteliers face the challenge of standing out from the field to attract the interest of potential guests, necessitating careful management of each guest's stay to enhance their digital reputation. To keep up, hoteliers must adjust their guest acquisition strategies and upgrade their technology, pricing, and reputation management tools. Crucially, hoteliers who acknowledge the increasing digital dependence of guests and proactively tailor their systems and strategies to this reality will be better positioned to attract future guests.

For more information on how your hotel can attract guests in a digital booking environment, please visit:

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