Vivential Value, a consultancy group specialized in the management of online reputation, recently published the second edition of its Online Reputation Index. This volume examines the “mobile effect” of reviews expressed through mobile devices in the period comprised from January 2012 to March 2013.
IRON_MOBILE evaluated 35,000 opinions expressed about 1,150 Spanish urban and vacation hotels. This case study has, for the first time, weighted the full value of mobile (mobile effect). 12% of user reviews published online were made from mobile devices.
Further analysis revealed that user opinions posted via mobile applications were more likely to sensitize or express their feelings. This is demonstrated by the 13% of the opinions expressed by unsatisfied customers, a figure exceeding the 9% of users who voiced an opinion using a personal computer or laptop. Conversely, the quantity of satisfactory customer reviews was slightly greater when users used their mobile device, rather than personal computer, to express a sentiment – 33% vs. 34%.
According to Rafael Gonzalez, director of Vivential Value, this type of opinion (transmitted across a mobile device) allows hoteliers to better gauge a perceived customer experience following a visit to a hotel, restaurant or tourist destination.
The Online Reputation Index broke down the central themes of the views expressed pertaining to the hotel industry: location, cleanliness, price/performance ratio, service, and level of in-room services. Service-related issues was the least affected by negative criticism by users of either platform.
This goes to show that hotels, restaurants and tourist destinations face a big challenge ahead, having to face complex situations while working tirelessly at providing a quality customer experience.
The study concluded that the “mobile effect” can present great opportunities, one just has to plan effective online reputation management strategies taking into account the following:
• Understand and quantify a property’s online reputation. This allows managers to find areas of improvement.
• “Moments of Truth” guests want the possibility of having tools at their disposal to share their experience, be it a video or picture. We must foster resources that are likely to yield positive feedback.
• Knowing our consumer’s technological habits is paramount when planning a strategy.
Opinions can be of great benefit since they help build a company’s online reputation. This is why efforts should focus more on the quality of service that is the basis an effective marketing plan.