Just 20 minutes to all major attractions in Orlando, The Florida Hotel and Conference Center is a 511-room, 50,000 square feet facility located in one of Central Florida’s largest indoor shopping malls, The Florida Mall. Thirty years old, the building has had a rich history since it originally opened as a Crown Plaza. Current ownership began on May 4, 2004, and for nearly a decade the hotel has set itself apart with a focus on guest service and customer satisfaction. While customer satisfaction can mean many things to many people, at The Florida Hotel and Conference Center it means a singular focus on providing guests with a great experience and constantly striving to improve, whether through upgrades to the building or new technology to help the hotel run more efficiently. Empowered by the owner, the leadership team is encouraged to pursue new ways of doing things and staying ahead of industry trends across all facets of the business. With solid financial backing, the hotel staff is in a great position to act quickly to take advantage of new opportunities and resolve issues as they arise, even when it requires capital.
Given the forward-thinking nature of the hotel’s leaders, it’s not surprising that they were willing to rethink how they were collecting guest feedback. Annie Barrett, Director of Customer Relations, says, “We are constantly looking ahead and evaluating what we do and how we do it. We are not afraid of change or to try new ideas. When I heard that Revinate had developed a new, innovative way to collect guest feedback, our team was intrigued and we signed up to pilot the new solution in April.” Revinate Surveys aims to change the way guest feedback is collected and used. Given the popularity of online reviews and social media, Revinate Surveys takes advantage of the fact that consumers want to provide feedback in their own voices and tell the hotel what mattered most to them. And, Revinate Surveys provides social hooks to allow public sharing of the feedback so reviews can be used to drive more bookings. Annie adds, “Revinate Surveys is easy to use and simple to set up and manage. Using the solution we are able to find out what is top of mind for our guests and still ask a few custom questions, in addition to the Net Promoter Score. And the fact that guests can share their feedback with their networks is terrific because it means that our happy guests become our extended marketing team, which I know is how business is won today.”
Guest feedback is used extensively at Florida Hotel and Conference Center. First, it is used to assess the individual guest’s experience. Annie says, “We spend the time to read every survey. Did we meet expectations? Will the guest recommend the hotel to others? Second, we use feedback as a guideline to rethink or establish new policies and procedures around training, to make improvements to the hotel itself as well as our services and amenities. Every comment is valuable in helping us to see what we do well and where we need to improve.” When feedback comes in, the senior leadership of the hotel reviews it. Annie and her team respond to all feedback thanking guests for participating in the process. She makes amends if there was an issue on site and/or provides thanks for any positive sentiment. Then she publishes the feedback, via SocialBuzz, Revinate’s publishing widget, to the hotel’s Web site. She says, “By engaging with the guest we are able to build advocacy, which has become very important to driving both repeat business and referrals. And, by publishing the feedback to our own site, we are able to drive new bookings.” Being on the forefront of technology has paid off for The Florida Hotel and Conference Center. Annie says, “Revinate Surveys has improved our post-stay responses by more than 125%. And, our Net Promoter Score is usually around 70, which means that we are driving very satisfied guests to share their feedback publicly. I love that I can monitor our response rates closely to optimize performance by making small changes to the survey and email invite.” And, since the hotel is using Revinate for Online Reputation Management, hotel staff can see all feedback, regardless of source, in one single dashboard, which makes it much easier to see trending issues and overall sentiment. Annie adds, “The ability to see our survey data as part of our overall reputation data is critical for us because it allows us to see our biggest issues overall and tackle those first. But, it is also great that we can isolate and track feedback by individual channel to see how our solicited feedback differs from feedback on TripAdvisor or Expedia, for example. As the hotel approaches its 10th anniversary with the seasoned leadership team, hotel staff is excited about the future. Associates are proud to be part of a hotel that has, for many years, held a top-five position on TripAdvisor in a market with 300+ hotels, in the number one tourist destination in the world. And, a steady influx of fresh reviews from Revinate Surveys provides staff with clear direction on how to evolve and grow, and more importantly, continue to provide the best guest experience possible.