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Your STAR Rating

It is as important to maintain your STAR Rating as it is to earn it. The best way to maintain your rating is to keep abreast of industry standards with respect to d├ęcor, furnishings, equipment and guest services. A few new product additions and improved customer service can be all your establishment needs.
 
There are several sources of information available for operators including; reading trade publications, visiting new properties, attending trade shows and participating in your local lodging association.  

Differentiation

Product and service differentiation can set apart one establishment from another. Businesses can find many ways to add value through differentiated services.
 
An establishment can distinguish itself from its competitors in a way that is communicable and visible to guests. By providing quality products and that 'extra something' for guests you will increase the establishments image to patrons and promote positive word of mouth, thereby increasing the level of returning guests. 

Knowing your market 

When it comes to your clientele, the most important thing any accommodation establishment can do is know and understand its market. One way to monitor this is by building a customer database and maintaining regular communication with these customers.
 
A quick written questionnaire can be given to guests upon arrival. This provides valuable demographic information on your guests and also allows you to better understand their needs. 

Reaching your market 

When advertising your establishment don't limit yourself to one marketing medium. A combination of print, email and internet works best and will give you broader exposure. Measure the effectiveness of the varying methods by monitoring the source of reservations. This will enable you to capitalise on the best method of advertising.
 
Don't forget, co-operation breeds success. Work closely with the local attractions, shops and restaurants. Try to organise special deals, vouchers and packages with them. This will appeal to your guests and help attract people to your establishment and the area.
 
Keep up to date with industry standards, request feedback from your guests and promote your business.
 
The more you know the better you can compete, obtain the best rating possible and provide excellent service and returning patrons.
 
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