Revinate
Revinate
Revinate
Blog Articles

What Hoteliers can learn about ratings from an Airbnb Super Host

Long before I was an Airbnb host, I was a Revinate marketer. In the early days of online reputation marketing, I traveled to hotels and shared what I knew about the growing influence of online reviews on the hospitality industry. One thing I stressed over and over was that guests wrote great reviews when they were surprised and delighted and wrote bad reviews when they were surprised and disappointed. I urged hotels to be transparent and let guests know about renovations before they arrived on property. I pleaded with them to review their photos to ensure they accurately represented the property.

Years later, when I became an Airbnb host, I used my Revinate experience to climb the ranks to become a Super Host in San Francisco. Here’s how I did it:

1. I make it very clear in my listing who my target guest is and isn’t:

My house is modern in design and has some sharp corners and ledges that small children can easily fall off of. I made it very clear in my listing that the house wasn’t appropriate for children. In addition to being a liability, I know that it would create stress for parents when they should be relaxing. I would rather have fewer happy guests than more unhappy ones.

Lesson: It’s ok to not be all things to all people. Make it clear who your hotel is best suited on your website and in your 3rd party profiles.

2. I am honest about the shortcomings of my home:

My house is brick and timber so it gets pretty cold in the winter. Rather than disappoint people looking for a warm and cozy nest, I was honest about the lack of heat and when people mentioned it in reviews, I publicly thanked them for reminding others that it can get chilly and if warm and cozy is their thing, my house probably won’t work.

Lesson: Use reviews as your opportunity to emphasize what you want prospective guests to know. People often read reviews closer than the marketing copy you write.

3. I spend the time to prepare a guide:

Like a concierge, I know the best dry cleaners, restaurants and cafes in my neighborhood and I put together a guide to help people navigate. Not only do I get to share my favorite places but my guests get to feel like locals, which makes their experience better.

Lesson: Do a little something extra to help guests feel like locals. I once stayed at a Kimpton that provided laminated running maps to put around your neck with 1-, 3- and 5-mile routes highlighted. It was so helpful and thoughtful.

4. I leave out lots of snacks and drinks:

How great is it to find a local, yummy snack after a long day of travel. When I traveled a lot for business I loved receiving room amenities so I pay it forward to my guests. In addition to a bottle of wine, I love to put a basket together with local snacks and sparkling waters. Tcho chocolate from San Francisco is a 5-star review maker.

Lesson: While hotels need to focus on room profits, a fresh cut flower in a vase or a piece of fruit in a dish can go a long way after a busy day.

5. I trust people to treat my house well:

I always hated the hangers at hotels that you can’t remove because they make me feel like a criminal. I find that when you show that you trust people, they want to leave your house in great condition. Of course, I lock up my valuables but I leave out my books, liquor and collectibles. I encourage people to help themselves to whatever they need and I have never felt that a guest took advantage of my generosity.

Lesson: There’s going to be a bad egg here or there but for the most part, if you make a personal connection and treat people well, they will return the sentiment.

6. I encourage people to call or text me with any issues:

I love when guests reach out to me with questions because it allows me to be helpful and feel like a host, versus a home renter. I leave my number out and encourage guests to reach out, any time, for any reason.

Lesson: I have stayed in hotels that leave a note from the GM in the room, encouraging guests to contact him/her with any issues. Knowing that the guy/gal at the top is focused on guest satisfaction is a great touch.

7. I check in with guests:

I have an electronic lock so I know when guests arrive. An hour after a guest checks in, I shoot him/her a text making sure everything is in order.

Lesson: Do everything you can to solve issues early in a guest’s stay. Service recovery is a great way to drive loyalty.

8. I go the extra mile:

I have a neighbor drop off cupcakes on the second evening. I have extra toothbrushes, combs and bathroom supplies on a shelf in the bathroom. I make sure there are tons of big, soft towels and extra blankets for the bed. I use nice sheets. I leave fresh flowers.

Lesson: With so many hosts/hoteliers settling for adequate, be extraordinary and your reviews will shine.

Related Posts

Insights that drive results

Subscribe now to get the latest content
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Go to Top