What is guest messaging? Why you should pay attention to hospitality’s fastest-growing secret weapon.

A fast-growing addition in the hospitality industry, guest messaging digitally connects guests directly with hotel staff. Via text and other channels, guest messaging leads to higher overall ratings, more direct bookings, and increased staff efficiency.

Laura Beier
January 31, 2022
Guest Messaging
Guest Service
Hospitality
Hospitality Trends
Hotel Guest Messaging
Messaging
Texting
Resident Engagement
Resident Messaging
Living Environments

As we enter 2022, guest expectations are sky-high, and hospitality teams are operating at an all-time low. More front desk teams across all service levels and geographies are adopting guest messaging: a way to connect with guests in-the-moment to answer common questions, address maintenance requests, and effectively run check-in processes. The result? Higher survey scores, more direct bookings, and less-stressed hospitality teams. Here’s how it works.

OK, give me a rundown.

Guest messaging, or what Kipsu likes to call “Real-Time Engagement,” is digital messaging between hospitality brands and guests. Most commonly, it looks like business text messaging directly from a hotel concierge to a customer.

Kipsu provides an all-inclusive platform for hospitality professionals to connect directly with guests through multiple channels including text messaging and Facebook Messenger. Guest late to check in? Send ‘em a text! Guest got a leaky ceiling? Get it fixed before it finds its way to a bad review on Tripadvisor.

We work with the whole spectrum of hospitality brands, from luxury leaders like Waldorf Astoria, to economy staples like Clarion Suites. Hotels can customize the platform to fit their specific needs, such as connecting internally with the team for maintenance issues.

An overview of the Kipsu platform.

(Kipsu also provides guest messaging for shopping centers, the healthcare industry, higher education, and more.)

How does it work? 

Once you partner with Kipsu, we set you up with free training and a log in to the Kipsu platform, where you can reach guests through multiple channels.

iPhone 13 mockup of a hotel text conversation
A typical Kipsu conversation

There’s no download required for guests, and the platform—which is currently live in 56 countries—can be accessed through a login page on any internet browser. In addition to text messages and digital messages such as Apple Business Chat, Kipsu allows you to send guests documents and images, pull reports on customer data, and extend personalized, high-touch service to current and potential guests.

Why use it? 

Two years into this thing, and we’re still dealing with a global pandemic. This means understaffing in the service industry, an increase in digital use, and the need to socially distance ourselves from others. What can help? Guest messaging. 

A study conducted by the University of Zurich in Switzerland observed a “vast increase in digital communication” related to the COVID-19 pandemic, with 46% of study participants using text messaging more often. Now that travel is making a comeback, hospitality has to meet guests where they’re at: expecting new technologies to be implemented, easy high-touch service, and a way to safely distance.

With digital messaging, customers can avoid phone calls and in-person trips to the front desk, helping to socially distance. Hospitality teams can more efficiently connect with guests and solve problems before they transform into a negative online review, on a channel that is more positively received—an article from Campaign Monitor states that open rates from SMS messaging are as high as 98%, compared to 20% for emails.

All of this can seamlessly occur through a customized, automated process. Kipsu’s focus is to augment teams instead of replacing them — each aspect of the platform can be customized to fit each individual hotel property’s needs. While other text messaging services might make customers feel like they’re conversing with a bot, Kipsu works to keep humans at the center of service: they’ll be talking to a real human every time. 

Does it make a difference?

We think it does, but take a look for yourself. 

Hospitality brands that launch Kipsu experience increased customer satisfaction, higher average review scores, and lower negative reviews on travel sites like Tripadvisor. Here’s some examples: 

  • Since implementing Kipsu, Driftwood Hotels experienced a 22% increase in 5 star reviews on Tripadvisor.
  • IHG Hotels, on average, continually see a 15% increase in overall satisfaction for essential brands and a 12% increase for luxury.
  • Hampton Inn & Suites Manteca experienced a 35% decrease in negative Tripadvisor reviews (3 stars or lower) after partnering with Kipsu.

Using digital messaging for hotel guests also enhances guest survey scores across all service levels, and can increase overall bookings. But that’s enough bragging for now.

Sounds impersonal… 

While it may seem like the trend in digital messaging is headed towards conversing with robots, we’re focused on augmenting teams, not replacing them. Using Kipsu’s platform, hotels can keep humans at the center of service by addressing maintenance issues, answering common questions, and making sure their stay is as comfortable as possible, all in real time. 

Don’t believe us? Schedule a demo today to explore the platform with our incredible sales team, who will show you the ropes and add a bit of fun to your day.

Schedule a conversation.

Curious to learn more about Kipsu and digital messaging? Connect with a member of our team to get all of your questions answered.