Full disclosure, I am a millennial, and I am a bit on the older end of the generation being 30 years old as of this writing.
We are way to savvy to hide information from. If your hotel is under construction, we’ll know about it through social media, tripadvisor, yelp or by some other means. Just be up front about it and make the information readily available. Put links up directly to your TripAdvisor page and make sure your guests are being listened to.
As a hotelier myself, this is a non-starter. Just offer free wifi. If you don’t I’ll just be angry and use my cell phone’s less quick but free wifi instead. Use the landing page and terms and conditions to tell us something useful like why we should enjoy your happy hour.
This is completely contradictory to what we do, but in all honesty I am not interested really in good hospitality. I would prefer to go straight to my room and not need anyone to bother me at all with the check in process. This sort of hands off approach though is not the case when I have an issue. When there is something amiss I want it fixed immediately or to be able to talk with someone right away. I’ll go to Twitter if there is no contact information available but trust that most small hotels won’t be able to react fast enough.
I might ask the concierge for his/her favorite restaurant. If they recommend the hotel’s restaurant I will most likely automatically discount every single word they just said AND I will still probably double check their answers on Yelp. If your concierge is going to recommend the hotel’s restaurant, BE GENUINE. I would say, “if you are the mood for an amazing Fish sandwich (or whatever the best dish is), then you should check out the hotel’s restaurant. Another favorite restaurant of mine is…”
The sort of comment is so much more effective to me and my generation. If it is amazing Yelp will back you up. If the food is terrible and the manager comes around, I will say nothing. In fact, I find it odd when people send food back. It seems so rude to our generation. Instead, I’ll post something on Yelp to warn my fellow millennials to steer clear.
Value is completely objective due to changes in the cost of living from city to city. I will cost compare various hotel’s and find the best value. I come up with this value generally by searching on Kayak and comparing hotels on TripAdvisor. I will invest the time to research ahead of time. The “social” recommendation to me hasn’t seemed to pan out just yet and we are still a sucker for great marketing.
Millennials are looking for an experience more than just a place to stay, Why do I want to stay with you? Maybe the front desk staff was mentioned as giving amazing advice? Perhaps the hotel has the best rooftop view in the city? Maybe the design is so different that I just want to experience it? If you can offer an experience, it will increase your value.
I take great pains to find unique experiences. In Miami where I live, I will check Yelp for new restaurants to go experience for the first time and I avoid as much as possible chain restaurants and brands. After the first time at Panera Bread I know what I am getting. It will meet expectations but it won’t be a travel experience. I will use brands that offer quality like Panera or Aloft for example when there are no options or when researching isn’t possible (finding a quick bite during a road trip or when there are no options). For example, when I am taking the 6 a.m. flight out I will grab a scone and a coffee from Starbucks, but if I am connecting somewhere with a layover, I’ll go to Yelp and look for something better. Portland Airport, by the way, has some great retail and restaurants.
It’s 2013, check in should not be painful. I can NOT wait for Opera to finally be replaced by something amazing.
When traveling to NYC last December hotels that were at all decent in any way were priced over $400/night. That is pretty motivating so I took to AirBnB in order to see what else was available at that time. Sure enough I found an incredible Studio Apartment for $150/night. In hotel form it would have been a suite and cost $600+ so I booked it immediately. Instead of spending our budget on the hotel room, we were able to indulge more in the experience that we ultimately had come to NYC to seek out.
If you are seeking out Millennials (and you will be by 2030), then embrace technology. Listen to guest reviews, offer an experience even if it is a niche one and just give me the free wifi. If you do these things, then by any luck, you’ll be a top rated hotel on TripAdvisor. 😉