The Key To Building Consumer Loyalty? Trust
The report is based on the answers of 40,000 travellers from across the world. One of the main takeaways from the study was that the concept of brand value has changed even since the previous year's report - and that understanding this is essential for building up a successful hotel brand.
According to the report, the new consumer perception of brand value is composed of three elements. First of all, consumers now come to evaluate brands with a "more complex value equation in mind"; secondly, trust is essential for building any brand relationship; and finally, building brand value is said to "put deposits in the company 'trust bank'".
Another topic highlighted by the report is that consumer demographics are changing and varying widely, which is affecting the way that they interact with hotels. For example, millennials (those aged 18-34) are less concerned with person-to-person contact when making travel plans, and around half (45%) have booked a hotel from their smartphone.
However, the 'baby-boomer' generation (those aged 45-70) are less likely to book hotel services from their mobiles, with just 22% of 55-70 year olds having done so.
The findings run somewhat in line with 2014's report, which stressed the importance of building brand loyalty through global, local and personalised experiences. But this year, the most genuine and effective guest loyalty - and indeed, the most rewarding relationships - will be based on building what the IGH refers to as 'Trust Capital'.
Richard Solomons, the chief executive officer of IHG, said that building 'Trust Capital' would play "a critical role in delivering sustainable, high quality revenue growth."
And in order to do this, organisations will need to adopt a "trust agenda, focus on personalisation whilst being aware of the boundaries, and develop a deep understanding of how guest needs are changing by demographic and by geography," he explained.
How do you build consumer trust and loyalty in your business?