4:43am: Phone rings
Don’t forget, I’m on call 24/7 in case any hotel customers have problems
Customer: Hello, I’m customer at Bad View by the Sea. Our smoke detector is making noise, but there is no fire.
Note: customer is not from US and only speaks and understands some English
Me: Were you doing anything before this happened?
Customer: We were sleeping. We thought there was fire, we dashed out of room. We realized there was not fire.
Me: I’ll be there in 30 minutes.
I got to the hotel and the customers looked at me as if I were a superhero ready to save the day (I think they simply mistook my rain poncho as a cape)… I dashed into their room, shut off the right breaker, and ripped the smoke detector out of the ceiling! The customers were beyond thankful and profusely apologized about the situation, even though they were not at all at fault. It was a case of a faulty smoke detector that simply needed to be replaced.
The following morning the customers were in the lobby apologizing to all of the customers in the neighboring rooms about the noise. I was shocked. Here we have customers who are paying good money to stay in a hotel by the beach, who were woken up at 4:30am and up until who knows when due to a malfunctioning smoke detector. They were not angry or upset with me or anyone else. As far as I’m concerned, these customers were one in a million! To say thank you to these saints for their positive attitude and to apologize for their horrible evening, I refunded a night’s stay to their credit card. They were beyond thrilled, and the result was a fantastic review on TripAdvisor, a wonderful posting on our Facebook page, and the promise of coming back next year, and with friends.
In the six years that I have been managing hotels, I have always thought about writing a blog to share the funny, ludicrous, mind-boggling, and sweet stories that I encounter on a nearly daily basis. While this blog has allowed me to have a somewhat secret identity with fake hotel names, it has allowed me to grab the attention of many who are not in the hotel field and enlighten them to a day in the life of a hotel manager. However, through the past few weeks, started to question whether or not I was trying to promote my blog in the hotel industry or the customer service industry.
I thought that a hotel blog should really focus on promoting the brand of the hotel, local attractions, and fun and exciting things going on at the hotel. If you have been reading for the past few weeks, you know that this is NOT what I have done. Instead, I have shared amusing and annoying customer stories to attract an audience. As it turns out, I do not seem to be too far off track. According to Josiah Mackenzie, author of the article “Hotel Blogging Best Practices”, I am right on track. In the article, Mackenzie describes that hotel blogs are usually only used by single location, independent hotels and tend to follow many themes and contain information about the hotel and happenings… I just added a bit of humor to mine! In addition, he describes that hotel blogs can be strategic, experiential, analytical, trivial, or contain a crisis, interview, or announcement (MacKenzie, 2008). To learn more about the best practices, check out this site: http://www.hotelmarketingstrategies.com/hotel-blogging-best-practices-part-4-publishing-topics-and-style
I feel that during that past few weeks of creating and growing my blog, I have done just what MacKenzie has described in his article. While this is my last required blog post for my social media class, I do plan on continuing this blog and focusing more on the specific humorous happenings at the hotels and sharing even more ridiculous customer service interaction stories… Stay tuned!!!
MacKenzie, J. (2008, September 5). Hotel Blogging Best Practices. Retrieved from Hotel Marketing Strategies: http://www.hotelmarketingstrategies.com/hotel-blogging-best-practices-part-4-publishing-topics-and-style/
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