Awards, surveys and competitions are effectively weapons in the marketer’s armoury, but we all know they can be extremely time-consuming to administer and manage.
So how do organisations cut the workload, improve the customer experience, and eliminate the risk of entries getting – lost in the process? These were the goals the Hotel Marketing Association (HMA) set itself for the 2013 Hotel Marketing Awards.
I got talking to Linda Moore, Chairman of the HMA, at a Chartered Institute of Marketing meeting, and it quickly became apparent that our software provided the solution they needed. The HMA wanted to reduce the manual work involved in administering entries for the Hotel Marketing Awards, and simplify the process for companies and individuals submitting entries.
1: Web landing page:
We created a tailored web-landing page in HTK Horizon, adopting the brand look and feel of the existing HMA website to create a seamless user experience.
2: Smart web-form:
We built an easy-to-use form within the web-landing page, with text fields, drop-down menus and pick-lists to capture all the information the HMA required from each entrant.
3: Real-time data capture:
When the entrant submitted their form, the information they entered fed automatically into a secure online database within HTK Horizon, avoiding the need to manually record type entries in a spreadsheet.
4: Automated email notification:
The instant someone clicked ‘submit’, the HMA received an automatic email notification containing all the entry details.
5: Auto-response customer email:
An auto-response email was triggered to the entrant’s email address to inform them about what to do next, and provide the right contact details for the HMA awards.
6: Entry by email or post:
The HMA wanted to provide entrants with the choice to submit their entry either by email or post, providing continuity with the previous years.
7: A complete, real-time customer database:
A key objective for the Hotel Marketing Association was to remove the possibility of awards entries getting lost in the post. By cross-checking an export of the data in HTK Horizon against the entries they had received, the HMA were able to identify any that were missing, or outstanding, and contact them by email or by phone.
Linda Moore is very pleased with the new process:
We set ourselves the objective to simplify and improve the awards entry process both from an HMA perspective and also for the people who were submitting entries. A key element of this was improved communications.
We wanted to reassure entrants immediately that their entry had been recorded, and clarify what they needed to do next.
We probably saved about a day of administrative time as a result. It was good to work with HTK on this project as they were able to find quick and easy solutions for us. The Hotel Marketing Awards are one of our key activities every year and it was good to know that we were in safe hands.
HTK Horizon: Email and mobile marketing software for Hotels, Hospitality and Leisure businesses.
Our software is used by hotels and hotel groups to build closer relationships with each customer and to drive more profitable direct bookings and sales. Using HTK Horizon they’re able to create web-forms and landing pages to grow their database of ‘opted in’ customers and capture information about each customer’s interests. Watch this case-study video to see exactly how Stoke-by-Nayland Hotel, Golf and Spa use HTK Horizon to target and personalise their email marketing and web landing pages to deliver more relevant and effective digital marketing based on each customer’s location, preferences and interests.
On a personal note, it was a delight to work with the Hotel Marketing Association on this small but important project.