In July, 2010, Emily Johnson, Manager of E-commerce and Marketing at Greystone Hotels, saw Revinate for the first time and it was love at first sight. Emily recalls, “My first thought was that Revinate was the answer to my problems. For nearly three years prior, I spent at least two days a month manually assembling monthly online review reports for all nine hotels, in addition to daily monitoring and responding to reviews. It was so important, but also an incredibly time-consuming and arduous process.” Two weeks after seeing the product for the first time, Greystone Hotels was up and running.
Revinate was a welcome improvement to the way reviews were previously managed because it provided much more visibility into each property’s online reputation. Rather than having one person at the corporate office manually aggregate data, send out monthly reports and respond to reviews, Greystone could now provide Revinate access to any employee for real-time data and analysis on reviews and online mentions so they could solve issues more promptly and identify new opportunities. Today, front desk staff, sales, maintenance, the revenue department, and GMs, among others, log in daily to the service.
Emily credits the intuitive design and ease-of-use with Revinate’s wide adoption at the properties. She says, “What is so great about Revinate is that there’s nothing to break. All employees are comfortable using it, regardless of their technical prowess. Anyone can go in and slice and dice the data without fear of messing anything up. I only wish other hospitality systems were designed as well.”
Emily also notes that Revinate operates much differently than other software companies in the industry. She says, “I have so many contacts at Revinate now and it’s great to know that I can just pick up the phone to ask a question or have a response to an email in minutes. They have been onsite multiple times to meet with us and share best practices. They also organize networking events that allow us to meet other hoteliers in the industry and provide so much great content on the blog and help desk. I really feel like our success is their number one priority.”
Almost a year into service, all nine hotels are using Revinate and finding tremendous value from the solution. With easier access to reviews and better insight into guest satisfaction, Greystone has been able to improve operations as well as scores and rankings on review sites. For example, Revinate’s Keyword Analysis report highlighted outdated televisions at the King George Hotel in San Francisco. With solid proof that guests wanted new TV sets in the guestrooms, Greystone was able to work the expenditure into their capital plans and soon all the rooms will have new flat-panel televisions.
Many properties have also seen improvements in their TripAdvisor Popularity Scores. With better access to reviews, the hotels began a program to encourage public guest feedback on the site, in addition to providing incredible service. As a result two San Francisco properties saw tremendous improvement. Hotel Griffon’s rank went from 108 to 50 and The King George Hotel went from 103 to 88 since the implementation of Revinate back in July of 2010. (San Francisco has 242 properties in the market.) Emily notes that TripAdvisor is driving more bookings today than ever before.
One of the biggest surprises for Emily is how proactive the General Managers are with using Revinate. They all subscribe to Revinate alerts to be notified of new reviews and mentions and Emily notes that they will often contact her about a review before she has even seen it. Norbert Mede, General Manager of San Francisco’s Hotel Griffon and The Inn at Union Square says, ‘Since signing up for Revinate, we have been able to track in real time the content on the web that directly impacts our online reputation. Using this valuable tool, The Hotel Griffon has been able to improve our position on TripAdvisor from #131 (when I first joined the company in 2007) to #50 and counting today. This has been achieved by providing timely management responses to both positive and negative comments as well as providing my staff daily feedback from gusts on their performance, which in turn motivates them to improve the service they provide. In today’s highly competitive market, our reputation and public perception is key to continued success and growth.”
Scott Woods, VP of Finance and Operations, uses metrics and scores from Revinate in his monthly GM meetings to share best practices, acknowledge success and discuss areas of improvement. He says, “Any time we can improve operational efficiency and drive guest satisfaction, I am happy. While simple to use, Revinate has allowed us to put a process around using online reviews to improve our business, and for that I am very thankful.”