For a lot of businesses within the travel industry, corporate travel has played a significant role in their business’s success. But like all other types of travel, businesses are changing the way they utilize travel for employees during this unique time period.
In a lot of cases, premium travel for a 2-hour meeting/conference might slow down as a lot of these meetings may be replaced by video conferences. However, trips that focus and rely on relationship growth with clients or new partners, Zoom, and other virtual calls might not suffice. That said, some deals are worthy of a handshake or a wave from across the room.
Safety Procedures & Loyalty Programs
Employers overseeing corporate travel will need to focus on generating safety protocols for employees that go on the road. In fact, in my opinion, they need to start thinking of health safety as the new loyalty program. is where short-term rentals can shine considering they offer more private accommodations compared to busy hotels, giving employees heading out on trips during this period more peace of mind.
As a property management company, start thinking of ways that you can ensure employers and employees know the measures you have taken to ensure the safety of your listings, maybe including certifications or a checklist on the entrance of the property, updating your listing descriptions and direct booking site, and/or striking much larger deals with businesses that guarantees them that every time they book with you the health and safety protocols will be upheld. This is especially important if the business has already created a safety protocol for their traveling employees. Case in point: to successfully market to the new wave of corporate travelers, you must promote the public health measures you are taking.
Targeting Previous Guests
In addition to promoting the health safety of your properties, start also thinking about incentives to win back business travelers who have previously stayed in your properties and get in to contact with companies who frequently sent employees to stay at your listings. In the past, this may not have been as important because occupancy rates were perhaps not a concern. But with COVID-19, you must pivot to target new travel personas in order to ensure stability.
Trying using coupon codes to bring some travelers back into your apartments, or if you’re not comfortable with providing discounted stays, you may also try other new benefits like a bottle of wine (or two) with every 3rd stay at any one of your apartments. This could also work with status loyalty. Think of a simple method to track this via the Guesty > Zapier > Hubspot integration to inform you of the number of stays a particular guest has had at your properties and make it so that every 10th stay they go up a status. This way you can give them apartment stay benefits – like a complimentary massage as soon as they check-in or free barista coffees for every morning that they stay with you (varying on their status level).
Amenities For Corporate Travelers
If you have not targeted corporate travelers in the past, start to consider things that may be of use to this type of traveler. Start highlighting workspace amenities more in your listing descriptions and communication flow. This may be a full work desk setup or a portable desk addition that you can add on top of the dining room table (or any surface for that matter). Mention good Wifi and strong connectivity and even consider investing in items that a corporate traveler could not bring with them or may have forgotten, like an additional working screen for more productive work schedule, universal chargers (especially MacBooks and iPhone/Androids), a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard and even a printer.
Location & Events
Whilst events might not be back in full swing as of yet, start doing your research on conferences that have rescheduled for 2021 in the cities you have properties in, especially those that are in locations within close proximity to your listings. Think about creating an outbound strategy to call previous attendees and reach out to their HR teams to set yourself up for the next time these go live. Trust me, you will be ahead of the curve more than your competitors, and if you put the aforementioned in motion, you will also have a differentiating factor that will make you stand out to companies.