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How to gain customer insights from Wi-Fi

By Gavin Wheeldon , 06-Feb-2017
Last updated on 06-Feb-2017 at 10:35 GMT2017-02-06T10:35:32Z

How to gain customer insights from Wi-Fi

Gavin Wheeldon, CEO of Purple, discusses the golden opportunity for owners and marketers in the hospitality industry to use insights gained when customers log into their Wi-Fi through a form or social media.

A survey of 1,000 customers of bars and restaurants found that 80 per cent think being able to use Wi-Fi contributes towards a positive experience. But Wi-Fi doesn’t only serve the customers’ wants and needs, it can also bring huge benefits to businesses that effectively use the customer insights it provides.

Venues may wince at the expense of providing guest Wi-Fi, but its value can quickly offset the cost. By unlocking customer information, Wi-Fi can help venues to create a more effective marketing strategy, boosting customer loyalty and repeat visits.

Meet the Customer

By allowing customers to log in to free Wi-Fi through their social media accounts, venues can build a detailed picture of who they are, where they live, their age, gender, email, telephone number and even their interests. Clearly, this is priceless information for businesses looking to develop a highly targeted approach.

If customers log on to the Wi-Fi every time they visit, venues can monitor the frequency of their visits and how long they stay. Depending on the hardware and software used, businesses may also be able to collect real-time location data, information about customers’ movement within the venue and their dwell times.

Bang on Target

With this information comes the ability to communicate with customers at the right time, in the right place, with an authentic, empathetic voice. These thoughtful, personalised interactions work wonders to improve customer experience and loyalty.

Seven ways to gain customer insight through Wi-Fi: 

  1. Get social – Customers access your Wi-Fi system through a splash page. You can use this online real estate to do whatever you want, but a great idea is to feature your company branding and links to your social media accounts. This gives you an uplift in followers, enabling you to engage with customers in a more personal way and increase awareness of what’s going on at your venue.
  2. Rewards – When customers access your Wi-Fi, you effectively date-stamp every visit, and over time you can build a picture of how often they visit and how long they stay. Repeat custom is something to treasure, so why not offer a reward, such as a complimentary drink or dessert on a customer’s tenth visit?
  3. Birthday Treat – If you know your customers’ birthdays, make the most of that valuable information. Email them, or send them an SMS, to let them know you’ve remembered their special day and invite them to spend it with you. Offering a treat such as a free cocktail will be a nice touch to make them feel valued.
  4. Reviews – To complement your Wi-Fi and marketing, it’s important to build an excellent online reputation. As your customers are using the web to search for deals and reviews, take time to register with review sites like Tripadvisor. Email customers after they visit to encourage them to review your venue.
  5. Awareness – Use email or SMS to get as many eyes as possible to see your new menu, or details about a new service. If you have a product or service that is not performing, use these channels of communication to push out targeted offers.
  6. Smart Design – If you have access to location data, you can explore where your customers are within your venue and how long they stay in certain pinpointed positions. This footfall data can be used to learn how they are interacting with the space and help you make informed decisions about design, layout and signage.
  7. Timely Offers – Having the ability to map a customer’s exact location in your venue opens up the opportunity to deliver real-time voucher codes to their device at precisely the right time. For instance, as a customer is browsing the menu of treatments at the hotel spa’s reception, you could deliver a daily offer on manicures by SMS. There’s a strong chance of a booking and a happy customer.

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