Millennials and generation Z, our future big spenders, are more and more interested in the experience-driven economy. Adjusting customer care to suit their needs and expectations, as well as keeping in mind the desires of existing clientele, is key to maintaining healthy service excellence in the hospitality industry.
It goes without saying that generalizations according to generation-specific stereotypes are to be handled with care. Indeed, as Deloitte would have us know, there are commonalities that transcend generations. However, whether we turn to the cross-generational profiles of “aspirationalists”, “responsible go-getters”, “pragmatists” and “discerning achievers” or sort our insights by birth year, knowledge is power. Here’s a reminder of those all-important generation categories:
Adapting to millennials’ travel preferenceshas been a hot topic for some time now and continues to be of relevance as these younger adults of the current era are set to consume hospitality offerings for years to come. What criteria does customer care have to fulfil in order to meet millennials’ service excellence standards?
Omni-channel customer care with seamless design and experience
User-friendly FAQ pages
A click-to-call option or live chat platform
Short and concise customer service interactions
Rapid social media customer support answers
Tailored customer service assistance
Customer service reps as technology-savvy as possible
A good balance between automation and human interaction
Catering to generation Z is of two-fold importance: not only do parents currently booking holidays consider the preferences of their teenage sons and daughters, but also, these teenagers are soon to bud into the hospitality consumers of tomorrow. With this in mind, meeting gen Z’s expectations is both a matter of not alienating current customers as their children age and of future-proofing your business.
When providing customer care, it is therefore paramount to remember that generation Z is highly unappreciative of being made to wait. Their limited patience and extremely short attention spans mean that prompt replies are essential – with the bar for service excellence set higher still. Appealing to this target group may include:
Emphasizing the use of instant messaging apps, social media and AI-powered apps, such as Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant
Integrating software to quickly categorize and automate replies without neglecting human interaction
In a nutshell
Customer care as an integral component of service excellence is being pulled in several directions. Any and all endeavors to cater to upcoming target groups must be balanced against the requirements of existing customers. This diverse landscape requires hospitality businesses to provide up-to-date technological solutions, while also ensuring that customer-friendly telephone support conversations and face-to-face interaction meet the expectations of loyal baby boomers. They must communicate and be able to provide customer care via all channels, while remaining mindful of the fact that their generation X guests may wish to reserve social media purely for personal use. Modern-day customer care may be a minefield, but generation awareness can help carve a path to success.