Travelling Mystery Guest recently attended the World Travel Market at the CTICC in Cape Town. Here are our top 5 reasons for attending the next one:
- Meeting up with friends from the industry. In an industry that revolves around interaction with people, meeting up with old friends from the industry is one of the biggest gifts! In addition to the blessing of having friends in the industry, they also know other friends in the industry that they can introduce you to and visa versa. That brings us to the next reason for attending:
- Networking. These types of events are always ideal for making new contacts, creating leads and strengthening relationships. The Tourism and Hospitality Industry is one of those industries where it is best to meet your clients face to face. We like the human-to-human interaction – that’s why we do what we do. This also makes it easier to contact potential clients afterwards.
- Seeing what’s out there. Whether it is new opportunities, huge, scary competition or possibilities for collaboration, you get to see what is out there and you are given the opportunity to talk to different people face to face.
- A pool of people to tap into. Tourism and Hospitality professionals from all over the world attend this event and this provides you with a golden opportunity to tap into this pool of professionals if you play your cards right.
- Never too old to learn. In an ever changing environment, we all struggle to keep track with the latest technology, trends and tactics. The World Travel Market hosts numerous talks on a variety of subjects and you can sit in and take in as much as you like. We especially enjoyed the talk on the current state of travel blogs, hosted by Keith Jenkins, from Velvet Escape Travel Blog and iAmbassador.
So, be sure to save up for the next World Travel Market – it definitely is worth your travels and your time.
Written by: Renate Engelbrecht
Do you sit with information about your guests, but you don’t know how to use it? Do you sometimes wonder which areas of service you should focus on? We’ve got the solution for you!
Customer Journey Mapping
A customer journey map is a tool which will assist you in identifying what your customers experience at your establishment, what their likes and dislikes are, and which areas of customer service you should focus on. It’s something that any company in the tourism and hospitality industry should spend time on, as that is the one thing that will help you to get to know your customers better. You will be able to identify the different touch points between the guest and your establishment and the guest’s experience at each touch point. The ideal get-to-know-your-guest tool.
Here are ten easy steps put together by Travelling Mystery Guest to assist you in creating your own basic customer journey map. This map can become quite intense if you really put some effort into it – the steps below are just some guidelines to put you on the road: (PS – we also offer workshops on this topic. Contact us for bookings.)
- Before you start jotting down the map, you need to have a meeting with all relevant stakeholders of the business in order to decide which questions need answering, which business decisions you’re facing and what you hope to learn from the map. Then decide on a framework to work from. With the different touch points as a framework, you will be able to identify all the different areas where guests interact with your establishment during their customer journey.
- Gather intelligence. This part is the difficult part, as this is where you need to gather as much data as possible in light of your objectives. If you want to know which social media pages your guests prefer to use, you will need to do online research, interview your guests, delve through previous surveys that has been done and observe followers online. It is also here where you need to identify your different target markets, i.e. business tourists, leisure tourists, kids, etc.
- Put the information that you’ve gathered in a visual form. Remember: You need to visualize it from your guest’s perspective – focus on what the guest is doing, thinking, feeling, interpreting and buying. These will eventually form your touch points on the map.
- List general patterns that are relevant to the specific guests’ journey through your establishment (i.e. they mostly book via a travel agent, they mainly eat breakfast very early in the morning, they always ask for two point plugs, they usually book single rooms, etc.)
- Now identify additional journeys that represent other types of guests (i.e. the journey of a business guest and the journey of a leisure guest) and repeat steps 1 – 5.
- Identify areas where the customer journey between different target markets starts to differ. Also identify the “road blocks” that impact different customer groups in different ways.
- Add moments of truth (detailed interactions) at each touch point. For example: At the touch point, Company Website, the moment of truth would be that the website needs to provide ample information, needs to lead customers to additional pages like Facebook and the blog, needs to be easy to navigate, etc. These are things a guest would expect from your website. It will shape their perception of your establishment and perhaps even convince them that they need your service.
- From the moments of truth, you need to identify the areas where your company is not living up to standard. Spot the areas where you see opportunities for better engagement with your guests.
- After looking at the current customer journeys of your different target markets, now also create a map of the ideal customer journey. Ask yourself where the opportunities lie to exceed your guests’ expectations.
- Socialize your map with the relevant stakeholders. Consider the differences between the current customer journey map of your establishment and the ideal customer journey map and from there develop a road map for improvement. Be sure to include all relevant departments of the business in this map discussion in order to ensure that everyone understands the mission: exceeding customer needs.
Thanks to my sources: Antje Helfrich and Marc Steiner from Openview.