Tour operators: it’s time to manage guest feedback online
As a tour operator, you sell “once in a lifetime” experiences to travellers, most of whom are often new guests. This makes your marketing strategies essential, and managing your online reviews even more so.
People are far more likely to give feedback after experiencing something truly memorable – like seeing a lion kill from the back of a safari vehicle, taking in the majesty of the Scottish Highlands, or scuba diving over a pristine reef. If your money is where your mouth is, this is exactly what you’re giving them, and why it’s essential that you have a guest feedback system in place.
Guests paying for an experience (rather than a service) are far more likely to review it, good or bad. But if you’re selling an experience, how do you measure it? And how can you use your reviews to attract new business?
What ‘managing guest feedback’ is to tour operators
When choosing their next adventure, travellers go online to read reviews, blogs and magazine sites before narrowing down the search to individual company websites and offerings.
Not managing this space means that you are essentially letting your shop window go unchecked. It also means that you could be the last to hear about potential issues or drawbacks on parts of a tour.
One of the biggest challenges facing tour operators is collecting guest feedback in real-time. The days of capturing testimonials after the tour via the ‘pen and paper’ approach are fading, and while it may work for some businesses, it’s not a very practical solution. Encouraging guests to post on review sites such as TripAdvisor can also prove difficult, and they need to be reminded to take that extra step.
Guests may see it as an inconvenience, and even after you’ve collected feedback, sifting through every submission to analyse the data is laborious. As a tour operator that facilitates new groups on a daily or weekly basis, you need to use this data immediately to capitalise on the positives and take action before small problems become big issues.