Email, Text Message, Both? - Hotel Messaging Survey


Being a communications platform we often get asked about metrics regarding the trend of guest communication. Which channels are preferred, what is engagement like, etc. Obviously, research shows that communication has become inherently more digital and sure, we have our own metrics that relay the performance and popularity of channels gleaned through the use of Hoperator. But, any opportunity to get additional outside, unbiased research is always nice.

So, while every other research report confirms that messaging (social and text messaging) is continuously on the rise, we were excited when our friend Penny Trenter, the Director of Emerging Business at Focus Pointe Global offered to run a quick survey to their panel. If you’re not familiar with Focus Pointe, they are a research firm with one of the largest on-call participant panels in the United States with an active panel of 1.6 million people.

Over coffee the other day, Penny suggested that they could run a quick survey to sample their respondents. We were thrilled of course! Within two days we had the survey data. Here’s a snapshot.

When respondents were asked their preferred method of confirmation of a hotel booking:

Email - 63%
Text Message - 32%
Hotel App - 2%
Phone Call - 2%
Facebook - < 1%
Other -  < 1%

When respondents were asked how they would prefer to digitally communicate with a hotel during their stay:

Text Message - 42%
Live Chat - 23%
Hotel App - 14%
Email - 11%
Other - 9%
Facebook - 1%

For the most part the survey data was consistent with usage that we see with Hoperator. While email is the primary delivery method of pre-arrival communication, there is a high percentage of guests that prefer to respond with follow up inquiries with the most common follow up method being either a reply to the original email or more commonly, following up via live chat on the hotel website. 

While customers utilizing text messaging varies, we do see that communication that begins via text message generally stays within that channel. While other communication types generally switch channels, sometimes multiple times. It will be interesting to see how this behavior changes as we grow and if certain aspects become more regionalized. 

One of the responses we found very intriguing is that of the hotel app usage. While the survey was brief and did not include any questions regarding further details around hotel app usage. One of the stats that would be good know is regarding acquisition of the hotel app. I see another survey in our future! Regardless, I suspect this percentage will decrease over time. 

Chris Douglas