Hotel Reputation Management is becoming an increasingly hot topic and source of enquirers into Reputation Management Companies. Time of year may be part of the reason but it is also an increasing concern for individual hotel owners and chains of hotels.
Recent cases have hit the headlines across the world with resorts being lambasted for various reasons including food poisoning and swimming pool drownings. The recent media storm around a large family hotel in the North West of England (The Dalmeny) has created some significant reputation issues (Sky News Report) for the hotel that are likely to stay around on search engines for the foreseeable future continuing to to tarnish the Hotel and affect bookings.
A three year old tragically girl drowned in the swimming pool and when you Google the ‘Dalmeny Hotel’ the words associated with them include:
Whilst the Hotel has no direct responsibility for what happened it markets itself as a ‘Family Friendly Hotel’ and the impact of an incident like this is likely to be significant. Already reports from press are on page two of Google UK and could easily appear on page one soon.
The problem for the hotel is that it has a website and Facebook page on the first page of Google but everything else that appears is out of their control – they don’t own page one. This isn’t an issue until something like this happens then its crisis communication mode for the hotel in the short term but the in the long term the press and media coverage can linger around forever unless something is done to counter the situation. What can be done? Positive Press, Wider range of Social Media and procedures in place to react when situations occur would all help. Reactive crisis communications along with long term ownership of page one of Google – unfortunately most Hotels doesn’t do the latter until after and event like this.
The other danger that the Hotel faces is that the increased media coverage means that more people will type into Google phrases like ‘Dalmeny Drowning’. These could easily appear in the Google Search Suggestion in the near future constantly reminding those searching for the hotel about this incident.
The conclusion is that its best to create pre-emptive measures for any unforeseen negative press as any Hotel could face similar kinds of issues online at any time.