Hotel brands must offer ‘3D’ experience to win guests, says report

Hotels must deliver a ‘3D’ – global, local and personalised – experience to win guest loyalty in the future, according to a report by InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG)

The new report – ‘Creating Moments of Trust – the key to building successful brand relationships in the Kinship Economy’, says that personalised brand experiences reflecting local culture are particularly important for international travellers from emerging markets.

The report says that travellers believe global hotel brands offer better services than local hotel brands in several aspects, including safety consistency and innovation. They now expect global brands to be relevant in terms of local tastes, customs and cultures.

Commenting on the report, Richard Solomons, IHG chief executive, said: ‘This report marks a step-change in the thinking that has dominated the travel and hospitality industry over the last two decades. Hotel brands have traditionally concentrated on being 2D – how to be both global and local. But our research shows that the rise of personalisation means brands must be 3D in order to build both trust and lasting relationships with guests and to win in a highly competitive global market.’

Based on the research, IHG has identified six ‘trust-building’ actions that will help its hotel brands around the world to deliver the 3D experience that guests increasingly expect. These actions include consistency, authentic local customisation, tailored consumption, support technology enhanced service, personal relevance and using service to surprise and delight.

IHG says that it is already addressing the growing consumer demand for 3D brands. The development of the two newest hotel brands, HUALUXE Hotels & Resorts, the first international hotel brand designed specifically for Chinese travellers; and EVEN Hotels, the first mainstream holistic wellness hotel brand, are examples, it added.

The report, which surveyed over 7,000 international travellers, found that over the last 12 months, emerging market travellers have been travelling more frequently than their developed market counterparts.