Admittedly, the blog title isn’t as catchy as Mariah Carey’s 1994 classic, but probably does resonate more loudly with hospitality and travel brands this holiday season.
On the heels of one of the busiest Thanksgiving travel periods and leading into December, travel and hospitality brands have no margin for error when it comes to delivering a superior customer experience. According to the 2023 Deloitte holiday survey, intent to travel between Thanksgiving and mid-January is up across all age and income groups, and the share of travelers planning to stay in hotels surged to 56% (from 35% last year and 37% in 2021).
Air travel is also back up: 37% of American travelers will take a flight at least once during the 2023 holiday season. Cruise lines, for their part, are reporting all-time high booking volumes, boosting cruise occupancy and revenue even beyond 2019 levels.
Overbooked flights and full-capacity cruises and hotels mean that customers and brands must be able to engage quickly through all support channels; agents must be relentlessly efficient in addressing customer needs and complaints before cycling on to the next call; and brands must protect customers – and themselves – from the inevitable spike in holiday-related scams.
A holiday travel secret weapon
Deliver a poor holiday traveler experience this season, and customers will likely be booking with a competitor next year. A successful travel experience often starts with the ability for brands to communicate and engage with travelers rapidly and efficiently – a growing challenge due to robocalls that are eroding trust in voice calling.
Americans have been inundated with billions of unwanted robocalls over the past year, which explains why 68% of consumers refuse to answer calls from an unknown number. This inability to reach consumers to confirm upcoming reservations and trips, resolve complaints and provide urgent travel updates can impact the time investment required by organizations and ultimately the bottom line.
- 71% of consumers would answer a branded call from a hotel, airline or cruise line if they had scheduled or planned a trip.
- 57% would be more willing to share personal information regarding hospitality stays and travel if the incoming call is branded with their logo and name.
- 63% would answer a branded call from a hospitality/travel provider if the brand logo/name was displayed on the incoming call screen.
- 53% of consumers prefer to engage with a phone call rather than any other method with their hospitality/travel provider.
Rising consumer expectations continue to reshape the way hotels, resorts, airlines, cruise lines and other hospitality and travel organizations operate, communicate and deliver services. And while an omni-channel experience is an important part of delivering a superior customer experience, recent survey data shows over half of consumers prefer to engage with hospitality/travel brands (i.e. restaurant, hotel, airline, car rental) via phone calls than any other method.
Bottom line: Digitally transforming old processes is critical, and the aforementioned data affirm why these brands are deploying TNS Enterprise Branded Calling to help increase answer rates, lead generation efforts and productivity to improve the overall experience for end users. Enterprise Branded Calling displays vital brand information on incoming call screens so consumers can discern legitimate calls from malicious ones.
Identify and authenticate your business
TNS has more than 30 years’ experience in call identification and has facilitated one billion+ branded calls across major wireless carriers. Enterprise Branded Calling is available without an app download, on 300m+ Android and iOS devices across the Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile networks.
Since launching TNS Enterprise Branded Calling, travel and hospitality brands have experienced several benefits:
Increased Call Answer Rates. By displaying the brand logo or name on the incoming call screen, branded calling can increase the likelihood of customers answering calls. This higher answer rate ensures that important messages reach travelers in a timely manner.
Enhanced Customer Trust and Recognition. Branded calling builds trust and familiarity with customers. When customers see a recognizable brand logo on their incoming call screen, it instills them with confidence and credibility. They are more likely to engage in conversations, share information and feel assured that the call is legitimate.
Improved call duration. Last month, TNS enhanced its branded calling solution by adding Enterprise Authentication capabilities. The advanced call authentication technology, available as part of the TNS Enterprise Branded Calling product suite, ensures only legitimate, branded calls from a verified company are delivered to subscribers. Authentication can positively impact customer call duration; helping to reduce the number of security protocols required once the call has connected, which results in an optimized call duration, allowing call agents to get to the reason for the call quickly.
Protect travelers…and your brand
With increased travel periods come more travel and hospitality robocall scams from bad actors spoofing legitimate brands to trick consumers out of money and personal information. While sensational – yet very real – scams are grabbing headlines, such as AI voice cloning scams that mimic the voice of loved ones supposedly kidnapped or injured while traveling, the more consistent threat is call spoofing.
Enterprise Authentication empowers brands to safeguard customers from scammers intent on hijacking legitimate phone numbers, helping to reduce customer fraud. This capability is especially critical during peak travel periods or travel disruption events when scammers capitalize on chaos and confusion to convince customers the calls are real.
Holiday travel season is high stakes for travel and hospitality brands to meet and exceed customer expectations and maximize customer support channel efficiency to boost the bottom line. Learn more about how TNS Enterprise Branded Calling can bring holiday cheer to your customers and bottom line by visiting https://tnsi.com/enterprise-branded-calling/hospitality/.
Jim Tyrrell is Vice President of Enterprise Product Management at TNS with specific responsibility for TNS’ Communications Market solutions.
TNS Enterprise Branded Calling helps improve call answer and conversion rates, achieve better call durations and gives you a competitive advantage. Fill out this short form for more information from a TNS representative about how branded caller ID can help you and your business succeed.