Making sure you are up to date on the latest digital trends and marketing tools has always been key to maintaining a successful business, especially in the hospitality sphere. With the industry in flux, now more than ever it’s time to reevaluate your hotel strategy from minute operational details to your overall marketing approach. This month’s #HotelMarketingBuzz is honing in on the shifting trends we are seeing as we see the dust settle on the “new normal”.

2020 Hospitality Trends

1. A New Level of Cleanliness

2020 hospitality trends

The consensus of what is considered “clean” has just surged to a whole new level. In hospitality, cleanliness and reputation go hand-in-hand. Now, with the entire population holding up a magnifying glass to everything they touch, it’s not enough to just have a clean hotel, but it’s necessary to show the public how you are maintaining a pristine property. This includes doing routine deep cleanings of rooms and common areas, providing hand sanitation stations throughout the property, utilizing state of the art air purifiers, and training hotel staff on proper hygiene practices. Heavy-hitters like Marriot are also investing in more hi-tech cleaning methods like electrostatic spraying and ultraviolet light technology.

2. Facial Recognition Check-In

Contactless check-ins not only provide a level of safety but also give guests a VIP vibe. Being able to check into your hotel with a glance at your face is about as 007 as it gets. With new facial recognition software becoming widely available, you’ll be able to give your guests a seamless check-in and check-out experience, which let’s face it, is always the most tiresome part of staying at a hotel. Efficiency, security, and an extra cool factor will make your Klout score skyrocket in no time.

3. Biometrics

If you’re not quite ready to invest in facial or mobile technology, another hi-tech alternative is using fingerprint recognition for your visitors. With fingerprint recognition, the power of a relaxing vacation lies in your fingertips, which can be used to check-in/out and unlock your room. Also, many modern-day payments can be authorized with your fingerprint, which makes it that much quicker to charge for a room and other hotel services on the fly, and avoids the need for handling cash.

4. Virtual TV Remote

2020 hospitality trends

Did you know the television remote is one of the dirtiest items you can find in a hotel room? This difficult to clean germ-magnet could be a deal-breaker for a guest looking for a relaxing escape. That’s why Otrum has come out with an easy solution to ease the minds of channel surfers everywhere. Otrum’s virtual remote allows guests to control the television in their room using their mobile phones. The best part? You don’t need to download any app for it to work. You simply point your camera at a QR code displayed on the TV in your room and get instant access.

5. UGC

2020 hospitality trends

Don’t underestimate the power of your most important fan baseyour guests! According to Martech, “97% of Millennials share photos on social media while traveling, compared to 60% of all travelers.” These are organic brand ambassadors that are eager to post about their stay and increase your social footprint. While travel may be down, there is still a strong push for community support online. That means you might think about taking a local approach to target those looking for a nearby staycation and support a local business at the same time. 

6. Voice Search

“Alexa, search for highest-rated hotels near me.” If you’ve ever used voice search, you know the power of convenience it holds. If you haven’t tailored your business to be perceptive to voice search, you’re missing out on some big opportunities. “Sixty-nine percent of travelers said they have used voice search while planning a trip.” Voice search optimization is a relatively new trend in the hospitality industry, which means you’ll have a leg up on your competitors the sooner you set it up. Learn more about VSO here.

7. Virtual Reality

2020 hospitality trends

Giving your guests a preview of what type of experience they’ll have at your hotel is a great way to jumpstart your bookings. Virtual reality tours give your customers the ability to see things for themselves. Using 360 technology, guests can explore rooms, hang by the pool cabana, and feel the ambiance of the hotel bar, right from the comfort of their couch. Don’t have the ability to invest in a virtual reality tour? Search to see if there are main attractions in your area that offer VR that you can capitalize on, like these amazing virtual tours of National Parks

8. Social Distancing Design

Social distancing guidelines are shifting our ideas of personal space. One area that is seeing a big impact is hotel interior design. The new challenge for “architects and designers will be looking at ways to make our new ‘defensive spaces’—think plexi’d-off check-in desks—come off as warm and embracing.” Creating safe spaces for people to unwind without worry, will be essential for hotels to generate a sense of comfort that is key to guest satisfaction. To help manage social distancing, Solay has created a mobile app that allows guests to reserve hotel communal spaces, like poolside lounge chairs and beachfront cabanas. Now your private slice of paradise is only a click away. 

9. Robotic Room Service

2020 hospitality trends

Imagine ordering room service and getting it delivered to you by a rolling robot reminiscent of R2-D2. While the novelty of incorporating “robot butlers” into the hotel space has been around for a few years, the current situation has brought this idea back to the forefront. “The contactless feature which robots provide is now seen as favorable in an age where the demand for contactless service is on the rise.” Robots can be programmed to do a multitude of tasks like delivering shampoo and toothpaste, returning dirty plates, and providing fresh towels.

10. Identity Resolution

With more downtime at home, there has been a serious spike in web browsing activity. This surge in traffic means even more potential for your digital strategy to take flight. What if you could know exactly who is interacting with your brand across multiple digital platforms? With new identity resolution tools, like LiftCertain, you’re able to patchwork distinct interactions on your websites, social media, and ads, and attribute them to specific customers. According to SalesForce, 35% of outbound sales are awarded to the vendor that responds first. By uncovering the specifics of your customer’s journey, you’ll be able to target potential buyers at the opportune moment with the appropriate content, making them all the more likely to book with you. That’s a big win if you ask us.

Ready to kick your digital marketing up a notch? Contact us to learn how to optimize your online strategy and crush your revenue goals with high-tech tools like LiftCertain.