MOFU or MOFO? Why Understanding Your Hotel Buyer’s Journey is Critical to Conversion
The used car salesman lurking in the lot like a rabid great white shark.
Or the fast-talking telemarketer, who tries to release their pitch before you call end button.
Examples of painful experience which most avoid like the plague. Most damaging is the reputation and opportunity to build any meaningful relationship with those prospects.
Buyer’s Journey for Hotels
Thanks to advancements in technology, the consumer is much better informed and can easily vet a Shyster a mile away with online searches. Thanks to online reviews and social media, it’s even more difficult for these evildoers to prey on unsuspecting victims.
Conversely, most successful hotel salespeople aren’t focused on short-term wins, but building meaningful relationships that will pay dividends over the long haul.
Additionally, understanding their buyer’s journey can help personalize your process in an effort to help solve their problem, making you a hero and not a villain.
I love the band Journey, but what is a buyer’s journey?
The buyer’s journey is the process buyers go through to become aware of, evaluate, and purchase a new product or service. The journey is a three-step process:
1. Awareness Phase: The prospect realizes they have a problem.
2. Consideration Phase: The prospect researches options to solve their problem.
Nearly 80% of this process starts online. And 72% of those will turn to Google.
3. Decision Stage: The buyer chooses a solution.
Ok. Seems logical, but how can I apply this?
Every circumstance is different, so it’s important to first understand what your specific buyer’s journey looks like. Start by conducting a few interviews with customers, buyers, and other salespeople at your company.
Here are a few sample questions for kick things off for each phase:
Houston, we have a problem.
Buyers define their problem or need they have and how important it is in the ever increasing, long list of tasks. To further refine the process, ask:
– How do buyers describe their problem or need?
– How do buyers educate themselves on these problems or need?
– What is the downside from the prospect if nothing is done?
– Are there any misconceptions about the process?
– How do buyers rank this event in priority?
Let the search begin.
Once the commitment from the prospect has been established, they begin to search options and solutions to help them address their problem or meet their need.
Some specific questions could include:
– What types of product or service are buyers researching?
– How are buyers educating themselves on these options?
– How are buyers making decisions on which is best?
– When is the right time to make a purchase?
Make YOU the only choice.
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Once the prospect has made a decision to purchase, it’s game on.
The evaluation process kicks in while the buyers carefully weigh the positives and negatives for each viable options. To drill deeper into this process, ask
– What criteria do buyers use to evaluate the available options?
– When prospects consider your hotels’ options, what do they like or dislike?
– Are there any special circumstances or viable the prospect needs to consider if they book your hotel?
Defining or designing your hotel’s buyer’s journey can dramatically increase conversations and ultimately revenue across the board.
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Bringing it all home
The buyer’s journey can be frustrating, especially considering how emotional a prospect may be upon discovering a pain point or problem.
As a hotel sales professional, sticking by your prospect throughout the many stages of their journey, you’ll build a sense of trust within them that will ultimately transform into ambassadors for your hotel and beyond.
Cory Falter, Chief Creative Officer
You’ll find Cory idling at full throttle. Slow-paced has never served the passionate and innovative CEO. That could be because he spent the first half of his life professionally racing dirt bikes, which segued nicely into his current career of the ever-competitive and extreme sport of advertising and marketing. He will get you to the finish line.