Below, you will find a recent post from Seth Godin’s blog. It’s brief but very strong. In fact, it’s powerful.
But first, I have a few comments.
In the fourth paragraph, Seth writes, “If you know what’s broken, you can fix it for all the customers that follow.” The challenge most casinos face is they have NO IDEA what is broken with their customer service. They think they know or they guess, but they don’t have a real-time guest feedback platform. Thus, they are left in the dark. You read every day about casinos closing or asking the state for financial help. I’m convinced most casinos would prefer to avoid such drastic measures. Knowing what customers do and don’t like is a great step toward avoiding these pitfalls.
So how do you find out what’s broken? The first place to look is current customers. Find out in real time what they like and what they want done differently.
All casinos use mystery shoppers. I know because we do it for our clients. But shoppers are not real guests. They are being paid to gather data that shows how actual service compares to the casino’s service standards. Real-time customer feedback is real guests telling you about issues NOW, not a few weeks from now in a report.
Seth goes on to write that people want to be “heard.” They really do want someone to hear them and help them. Sites such as Yelp and TripAdvisor make it easier for a customer to share with the world online than it is to share with most casinos directly. The real tragedy of this is that a poor gaming experience goes from being a service recovery opportunity to an online reputation recovery. I want guests to share with the casino so the casino can make things better with the guest.
At the end of his post, Seth writes, “Pick up the phone and listen.” This is a great idea, but it’s not realistic for casinos. Most casino guests would rather email or text than call a live person and interact. I wish guests would pick up the phone, but they are much more likely to share via a text or email if you make the process easy and you respond quickly!
Research shows that more than 90 percent of people will do business with a company again if the problem is quickly resolved. That is why casinos need to move to real-time guest feedback so they can provide real-time service solutions and recovery.
BUSINESS INQUIRIES FOR ROBINSON & ASSOCIATES, INC.:
What Do You Think? Share Your Opinion!
I’d like your thoughts about what real-time customer feedback could do for your casino. Let’s all share our thoughts and ideas in the comment section. Also, we encourage you to visit our Google+ page for more information on how to make your casino competitive and successful.
Here Is Seth’s Post
What’s a customer worth?
A customer at the local supermarket or at the corner FedEx Print shop might spend $10,000 or even $25,000 over the course of a few years. That’s why marketers are so willing to spend so much time and money on coupons, promos and ads getting people to start doing business with us.
But what happens when it goes wrong? What if a service slip or a policy choice threatens that long-term relationship?
If you know what’s broken, you can fix it for all the customers that follow. It seems obvious, but you want to hear what customers have to say. After all, if people in charge realize what’s not working, the thinking is that they might want to change it.
At the same time, a critical but often overlooked benefit of open customer communication is that individuals want to be heard. Your disgruntled customer doesn’t want to hear you to make excuses, and possibly doesn’t even want you to fix yesterday’s problem (probably too late for that), but she does want to know that you know, that you care, and that it’s not going to happen again. Merely listening, really listening, might be enough.
Big organizations (and smaller, unenlightened ones) grab onto the data benefit and tend to ignore the “listening” one. Worse still, in their desire to isolate themselves from customers, they industrialize and mechanize the process of gathering data (in the name of scale) and squeeze all the juiciness out of it.
If you live in the US, you might try calling 800-398-0242. That’s the number FedEx Print lists on all their receipts, hoping for customer feedback. It’s hard to imagine a happy customer working her way through all of these menus and buttons and clicks, and harder still to imagine an annoyed customer being happy to do all of this data processing for them.
The alternative is pretty simple: if you’re about to lose a $10,000 customer, put the cell phone number of the regional manager on the receipt. That’s what you and I would do if we owned the place, wouldn’t we?
Answer the phone and listen. It’s an essay test, not multiple choice.
When in doubt, be human.
(Click here to go directly to Seth’s post.)
Casino marketing executives are searching for ways to generate more positive casino reviews for their property at social media sites. They know that positive reviews are as important as ATMs and a buffet to a casino’s long-term success.
As a casino consultant, I’m often asked how casinos can grow and attract more guests. Today, I suggest we take a serious look at what guests are saying about your casino through online reviews. When we examine a casino’s reputation on the Internet, one thing we do is look at what’s being said about the property at Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google+ and other sites. This shows us precisely what potential guests see.
Most casinos don’t make a great first impression through casino reviews! The reviews are often very negative. Research found that 46 percent of people use review sites to RANT about a negative experience. This means casinos need to actively generate more positive reviews in order to paint a better picture for potential new guests.
At this point, I must share a customer-feedback mistake that could end up getting a casino blackballed from important review sites. A casino employee takes an iPad onto the casino floor and walks around asking guests to use it to share their experience on Yelp or TripAdvisor. Obviously, these are positive experiences.
Sounds like a great idea! NOT!
Review sites have really smart people and sophisticated systems. They know when the site receives too many reviews from the same IP address and that’s a red flag. If they get a few reviews, they may just not publish those. If they get too many, they may think your casino is trying to game the system and block your property from future posts!
So how does your casino get more positive reviews on Google, TripAdvisor and Yelp?
You need to make it easier for guests to share with your casino than it is to share with a review site. We can remove antiquated comment cards and replace them with a real-time feedback platform. This encourages people to share their thoughts with the casino because providing feedback is so easy. It’s easy because guests use their own iPad or smartphone on the casino floor to provide the feedback. The platform is highly responsive and that gives the casino an opportunity for real-time service recovery while the guest is still on the premises.
The ability to respond quickly is valuable. You simply don’t want to make guests mad and then force them to wait for four to six weeks for a response to the comment card they filled out. Research shows if a problem is handled quickly, guests come back more often and tell friends how great the casino is at correcting issues.
The other important aspect of the platform is that it encourages more people to share. Thus, when you get 100 people sharing with your casino directly each month, you can identify issues as well as celebrate success. Positive reviews come in two forms – a review about a wonderful gaming experience and a review posted by a happy guest whose problem was quickly resolved.
Lastly, casinos can use the feedback platform to intelligently route people to sites like Yelp or Google+ so they can use their own iPad or smartphone to post a review about their great experience. Guests share their thoughts with the casino and then they have the opportunity to broadcast to the world. By encouraging guests to share more, you generate more positive reviews.
All this effort will pay off because the next time a person sees your ad and looks online for your casino, they will find more rating stars (for example, 5 stars instead of 2) and great reviews saying what a wonderful place you have.
Google is now using reviews as part of its algorithm for ranking websites in search results. Yes, this means that if a casino has more rating stars on a review site, it will also show up higher in the search. More positive reviews will mean better rankings and that means more potential guests see your casino.
Your casino needs to have an organized system in place for generating more positive Yelp reviews or you risk getting scroogled by bad reviews and low rankings.
BUSINESS INQUIRIES FOR ROBINSON & ASSOCIATES, INC.: