One of the latest trends to impact hotel marketing and the guest experience is the iBeacon, which sends a Bluetooth push notification to guests' mobile devices when they come within close proximity of the iBeacon. This presents an opportunity for on-the-spot guest marketing.
iBeacon technology for hotels is a key to improving guests' experiences. It can help you streamline check-in and check-out, guide guests around the property, and notify them about targeted offers at your restaurant, bar, or spa.
Here are ways that hotels and resorts are already using iBeacons to boost their guest experiences and create more up-sell opportunities.
Benefits of iBeacon technology for hotels:
iBeacons are a super effective source for gathering customer insights. By measuring things such as dwell times, how much time guests spend at certain areas in the hotel, and which areas of the hotel are the most popular during specific hours of the day, hotels can plan reward offers accordingly. iBeacons also are useful in measuring and enhancing staff productivity. For instance, iBeacons can alert housekeeping staff to service a room when the guest is out or to not disturb a guest when she is in the room. No more door hangers!
2. Upgrades and up-sells
By leveraging iBeacons, hotels can catch guests at the exact time and place where they’ll most likely pay for an upgrade. iBeacons can help by up-selling food in the restaurant or bar, mini treatments at the spa, or items from the guest gift shop. By tracking where guests choose to spend their time and what areas grab their attention, you can send timely offers that pique their interest.
Save your guests from waiting in check-in lines, especially after a long travel day. If your hotel is equipped with iBeacons, guests can simply walk into your hotel lobby where they'll receive ‘check-in’ push notifications on the hotel app. The push notification shows the reservation and asks for confirmation. Guests can confirm their reservation with a quick swipe of their finger -- the result is a hassle-free guest experience that begins as soon as they enter your hotel.
Also, imagine that your guests indicate a specific room temperature in their reservations. Once checked-in via Bluetooth, the room will start adjusting the temperature to meet their needs.
4. Keyless room entry
Once a guest has checked-in, a digital room key can be activated on his or her smartphone via the hotel app. A beacon then picks up the guest’s phone when in close proximity to the room, and unlocks the room door. It serves as a digital doorman. No tipping required.
5. Finding a room or other location within the hotel
Through a series of iBeacons around a geo-fenced property, guests can be directed to their rooms or other indoor locations in the hotel, such as restaurants, shops, meeting rooms, spas, etc. These can also be used to build an interactive tour of the hotel, directing guests and providing info about specific amenities or features.
6. In-room controls
By sensing that a guest is in his or her room and signaling the user’s proximity to Bluetooth enabled devices that control lighting, temperature, TV, etc, the iBeacon could trigger a message to the app which lets users control these settings from their own smartphones or tablets.
7. Room service
An iBeacon hotel app can keep track of the guest’s food preferences. When the en-suite beacon registers that the guest is in the room, it can trigger the app to pull up the room service menu on the guest’s device. The guest can then watch a video of how certain dishes are prepared or find a story about where the ingredients come from, and order room service right from his or her smartphone or tablet.
8. Loyalty programs
By providing the right offer at the right place and the right time, location-based mobile marketing can yield exceptionally high conversion rates with precise ad targeting. To achieve this, hotels can use iBeacons to present "location-specific offers" to their guests. For instance, by defining targeted "micro-locations," iBeacons can trigger an alert, an offer or a special discount for a beverage to a guest who is already at the bar. It’s easy to customize promotions to specific locations on the hotel premises and send context-specific offers to a user’s smartphone.
In the case of loyalty customers, predictive analytics of data compiled from previous stays allows highly personalized marketing.
Hotels can send guests a push notification at the end of their stay to either check-out digitally or extend their stay. The guests will be sent a receipt, and after they have confirmed the amount, they can check-out hassle free. What results is a modern, efficient, and seamless alternative to waiting in line for a front-desk agent to complete the check-out formalities.
Expand your offerings with iBeacon technology for hotels!
Up next, learn all about the importance of virtual reality for hotels.