Millennials Changing Up The Hotel Game

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10/4/2018
4hoteliers.com


According to demographers at Pew Research Center, those born between 1981 and 1997 which is roughly 27 percent of the global population (2 billion people) are currently between 20 and 37 years old; Millennials, the last generation to be born in the 20th century, I'd say they're quite important.

Millennials are in their young adulthood and are becoming the world’s most important generation in consumer spending growth and leaders in overall economic future. Today, Generation Y values experiences much more than achievements. Vigorous job economies have changed the standards of personal achievement. These young adults seek experiences with travel rather than settling down. I agree, it is much easier to spend two weeks traveling asia than landing your dream job or putting a down payment on a house.

Is this a generation of vivid travelers or maybe just nomads? Also contributing, millennials have been known for placing a lot of their time and money on who can be the most unique. They desire custom, experience filled traveling instead of purchasing homes, cars or paying for tuition. A ‘unique’ generation known for being afraid of being tied down and have since proven all researchers right by once again spending their money on traveling. They are passionate about it. However, they aren’t painless consumers, they have quite the demands. This means hotels have had to sacrifice a lot to accommodate to this new generation. But what exactly attracts these millennials?

Exclusivity

First things first, how different is the hotel from the others? How ‘Instagram- worthy’ is the hotel? Millennials often choose based on these 2 questions before booking a hotel or travel destination. Overly preoccupied with themselves and a slight obsession with individualism, they have developed the name Generation “Me”. Each one having the common goal of self-actualization, today’s young adults prove to eachothers eccentricity by using social media to display their personalized, meaningful, full of adventure lifestyles! Offering an experience as a hotel that will provide them a lifetime of memories with unparalleled views is the key to success here. Easier said than done though.

Technology

According to a recent study, 52% of Millennials use their smartphones or tablets to book their hotels and more than 20% have used their mobile devices to check into a hotel. Hotels are beginning to adapt to the culture of technology. So much so that you won't find a front desk when you arrive, instead, you'll check in at the bar. Exactly how we’ve become accustomed to checking in on our cellphones before flights. Hotels have also realized at what point millennials need to use their phones and the grave importance of internet, therefore making it priority to guarantee fast and free Wi-Fi as well. Successfully, some hotels have decided to invest in mobile key services. This service is an app that you download on your smartphone, which translates as a key for your door. Creating a much more modern experience for the user.

For example, hotels like Yotel, have created even more diverse methods to attract Generation Y. They have designed a space for their guests to live smarter. This tech savvy hotel in New York, was one of the first hotels in the world to obtain a robot that worked full time in the hotel. This robot named Yobot, takes your luggage before and after your check in and stores it in a bin with a pin number. But it doesn't stop there. They also have check in kiosks and motorized beds, in order to maximize floor space.

Visuals

Most importantly, Millennials are so technology oriented that nowadays everything needs to be visual. Even texting mostly consists of just sending gifs….Anyways, as they spend their days roaming social media and other blogs with more images, less words, they become conditioned to a visual-oriented understanding. According to Webdam’s research, content and visuals including images produce 650 percent more traffic, meaning the photography involved in the representation of the hotel is quite a big deal.

When it comes to booking the hotel, millennials look at photos first and foremost. Actually, 60% of them look strictly at the pictures posted in order to make their decision. Whether on the website or on the company’s social media, this is the customers first impression. Webdam confirmed that the average person forms their first impression within 50 milliseconds. You have less than a second to prove you are the best. Don’t you love millennials?

Provide the consumer with just the right pictures, perfectly photographed so they can imagine just how their experience will unfold. Transmitting the atmosphere of the room and hotel features isn't easy, but it is a necessity in order to grab the consumers full attention. The idea is for the consumer's experience looking at the photos to be just as exciting as the experience they are about to have when they arrive. Use that mentality and the millennials will follow. Especially when it comes to having a unique hotel or experience, this is exactly what you want to catch your (Millennial) consumer’s eye. Webdam’s research also mentioned that people are 85 percent more likely to purchase a product after viewing a product video. Therefore, integrating a 3-D or 360 experience will interest the 18-35 user, relating directly to their technological interest.

Social Media

These eager travelers are extremely information hungry. Actually, according to The Millennial Impact, 65% of Millennials claimed that missing or hidden information was the biggest inconvenience to them. Social Media has become the best and most simple way to receive and relay information. The easier it is to find information, the more comfortable it is for millennials to make their final decision. However, the information provided cannot just be a marketing stunt.

Millennials grew up in a constant overpromising and exaggerated advertisement society, therefore they are extremely vigilant when it comes to transparency. NO lying or over-promotional posts. They admire most when hotels are personable and again, will offer them that unique amiable experience mentioned above. For example, to grab the attention of millennials who regularly use social media, Marriott International has gone Hollywood by running its own studio to create short films, TV shows and webisodes that promote its various brands.

Other hotels have also used social media as a place that attracts influencers by posting pictures of their guests on their accounts (authorized, of course) to front a ‘real’ experience rather than always staged. Some hotels have chosen to follow the fashion world route and have become quite recognized for their celebrity postings and fashion blogging.

Keeping up with the fast pace lifestyle of this generation isn't easy, especially when they have high expectations. A complicated generation but a stimulating one. Millennials are changing the world everyday for the better. Follow them or fall behind.