I was in a hotel near Heathrow airport for a meeting over coffee and a sandwich and when I asked for the bill the waitress brought the bill and a feedback form. This was the first time I have seen a major hotel chain put together a customer feedback form in this way…it is certainly different with this very casual use of language…”I washed my food down with..” or “I really enjoyed your…”.
This is all about tone of voice and the emotional connection that you can make thought the use of language and phraseology That said this is really about collecting data from customers and clearly the team behind this felt that the language would attract more respondents. So my approach to collecting data is don’t collect it unless you are going to use it – I am not sure how me telling the hotel “what I washed my food down with” is going to improve the future experience or actually ever be put to any meaningful use by the hotel??? And of course all they had to do was look at my bill using the EPOS system if they really wanted to know this why did they need to ask me???
Bearing in mind that this was handed to me by the waitress and I was expected to hand it back to her – being cynical a quick glance at the answers and some feedback might find its way into the bin.
The bigger surprise was that this was in a Hilton hotel and I was struggling to reconcile the language with the brand – but I have to say that this does align with my constant challenge to brands to “think differently” if this was part of a shift for the brand to a more approachable, fun experience then it would be a good step in terms of language at least but I have seen no evidence of this approach filtering into any of my other Hilton experiences. The result is that it still jars I was presented with quite a long form full of seemingly random and irrelevant questions – the result was I didn’t fill it in not least because I was just about to leave and this would have taken a few minutes to complete.
Sometimes you need to think differently and then ask the questions do we need this, what will we do as a result or does this work for our brand positioning and if not then forget it!!