How Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, and IoT are redefining the Hospitality Industry

Whenever it seems that customer expectations can’t rise any higher, they do. To continue to earn customers’ loyalty, hospitality brands are embracing technology. And in particular, they are finding that Artificial Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR), and the Internet of Things (IoT) offer a mutually reinforcing equation of excellent service:

 1. AI helps brands personalize the customer experience

Hospitality brands are increasingly on the hook for personalizing customers’ experiences the way Amazon recommends purchases and Facebook recommends ads.
While the idea isn’t new–rewards programs for capturing customer information have been around for decades–what’s different is that consumers expect continuity between their online and offline experiences. Guests want an offer they receive on an app to be valid at checkout, to fix an in-person service issue by chatting with the brand on Facebook Messenger, and for hotels, taxis, and airlines to remember their preferences. Because private Social Messaging conversations are asynchronous and persistent, they tie guests’ pre- and post-booking conversations together so service agents always know their history.
It can take a lot of work to unify all that disconnected data, which is why hospitality brands are investing in data warehousing and algorithms to help them know guests better than they know themselves.

2. Virtual reality allows travelers to try before they buy

VR allows brands to do more storytelling. VR is often touted for its ability to get viewers to empathize with what they’ve seen to a greater degree than is possible in video or print. This is why tourism boards from Wales to Singapore have launched innovation funds and VR documentary series to tell their stories in ways that strike an emotional chord. You may have seen the virtual reality office videos from your doctor’s clinic straight to your laptops. The impact of VR in marketing is definitely transformative and imperative for all types of brands.

3. Integrating home life with travel life

Have you heard about the Internet of things? Yes, an idea that has changed the world. You can have access to your home appliances while you are traveling or at a remote location.

Today, AI, VR, and IoT in hospitality are all converging. More connected devices mean more data. That means AI algorithms are trained on better datasets and can perform more functions. And a greater understanding of guests’ interests, desires, and experiences means more interactive and engaging VR experiences before, en-route, and at their destination.

As customer expectations rise, technology offers an answer. The challenge for hospitality brands is investing in the right systems before it’s too late.

If you’ve enjoyed reading this article, please share it with your friends and colleagues. Thanks