Hospitality Reputation Marketing: Get Great Reviews

Adele Gutman Milne CHBA, CHDM

Welcome to the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast:

Get Great Reviews!

Adele Gutman’s mission is to help hoteliers and business leaders of all service industries to leverage the power of guest feedback to optimize team performance, create loyalty, and drive long term revenue.

Leading from the philosophy that Service & Product is Marketing and that a brand’s reputation is the foundation of Sales, Marketing, and Revenue success, this podcast is designed for leaders and future leaders in operations, sales, marketing, and revenue.

While we may talk about hospitality, these proven principles can be successfully applied to any service business ready to embrace a daily discipline to cultivate a culture of continuous improvement.

Together, let’s bridge the gaps between what we say about the experience we sell and what our customers say about their experience with us.

Each week or two, we will spend 20 minutes or more exploring proven best practices, mindsets, techniques, tips, and tools that drive revenue and loyalty businesses, by consistently inspiring 5-Star reviews.

Great reviews are simply an indicator of an agile, guest-centric, well-run business, so with help from an array of successful hospitality leaders, we will delve into a wide range of topics including:

  • Leadership
  • Compassion
  • Culture
  • Communication
  • Empowerment
  • Entrepreneurial Mindset
  • Embracing Feedback
  • Teamwork
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Coaching
  • Hiring
  • Inspiring
  • Training
  • Compassion
  • Humility
  • Authenticity
  • Service Innovation
  • Product Innovation
  • Process Innovation
  • The Customer Journey
  • Best Practices
  • Technology
  • Websites, Booking Engines, Emails,
  • Responding to Reviews and so much more!

Please join us, subscribe, share, and help us reach more listeners so we can all GET GREAT REVIEWS! @inspirefivestars


Start Here
Go from Housekeeping Woes to Housekeeping Wows.
24-09-2021
Go from Housekeeping Woes to Housekeeping Wows.
The Art of Housekeeping owner, Lonny Wolfe returns to our podcast with powerful words of advice for hoteliers challenged with mixed reviews due to housekeeping issues. Just as COVID-19 increased the need to inspire trust with travelers on our cleanliness and hygiene practices, the industry was thrown into a second crisis- how to hire and retain sufficient housekeeping staff. The world may refer to “The Great Resignation”, but in the case of our industry, it was simply a lack of desire to return back to work. Even when the enhanced federal unemployment support ended, workers failed to return in full force. Many left for less taxing higher-paid jobs with more benefits, fewer hours, better schedules, and a better work-life balance. There has been a lot of discussion about the need to enhance the employee experience in the industry, but it makes one wonder why it takes a pandemic to think about treating our teams with the care and compassion we want them to give to our guests. The Hospitality Industry recently celebrated Housekeeping Week, a time when hotel leadership takes the time to show extra appreciation for our hard-working housekeeping teams, but the time has come to show appreciation to all our staff every day. Lonny Wolfe, Owner of the new company, The Art of Hospitality, is a former GM who is a shining example of how you can challenge your team every day, set the highest standards and expectations of excellence, and keep a loyal, engaged, high-performance team who stayed with the hotel year after year. The 3-Star hotel was one of the highest-guest rated hotels in Florida, thanks to an unwavering flow of five-star reviews. I hope you enjoy this conversation about how Lonny shows hotels how to create employee and guest loyalty, starting with the hardest working people on any property, the housekeeping team.
Go from Housekeeping Woes to Housekeeping Wows.
24-09-2021
Go from Housekeeping Woes to Housekeeping Wows.
The Art of Housekeeping owner, Lonny Wolfe returns to our podcast with powerful words of advice for hoteliers challenged with mixed reviews due to housekeeping issues. Just as COVID-19 increased the need to inspire trust with travelers on our cleanliness and hygiene practices, the industry was thrown into a second crisis- how to hire and retain sufficient housekeeping staff. The world may refer to “The Great Resignation”, but in the case of our industry, it was simply a lack of desire to return back to work. Even when the enhanced federal unemployment support ended, workers failed to return in full force. Many left for less taxing higher-paid jobs with more benefits, fewer hours, better schedules, and a better work-life balance. There has been a lot of discussion about the need to enhance the employee experience in the industry, but it makes one wonder why it takes a pandemic to think about treating our teams with the care and compassion we want them to give to our guests. The Hospitality Industry recently celebrated Housekeeping Week, a time when hotel leadership takes the time to show extra appreciation for our hard-working housekeeping teams, but the time has come to show appreciation to all our staff every day. Lonny Wolfe, Owner of the new company, The Art of Hospitality, is a former GM who is a shining example of how you can challenge your team every day, set the highest standards and expectations of excellence, and keep a loyal, engaged, high-performance team who stayed with the hotel year after year. The 3-Star hotel was one of the highest-guest rated hotels in Florida, thanks to an unwavering flow of five-star reviews. I hope you enjoy this conversation about how Lonny shows hotels how to create employee and guest loyalty, starting with the hardest working people on any property, the housekeeping team.
The Tool Your Hospitality Marketing Tech Stack is Missing
23-07-2021
The Tool Your Hospitality Marketing Tech Stack is Missing
What’s in your tech stack enhancement plans this year? Contactless, AI, CRM, CRS, PMS, Revenue Management, all great tools that everyone should have and use to the fullest.   But according to Jordan Ekers, the Co-Founder of Nudge, technology alone will not transform your business’ guest experience nor your ability to retain clients and employee’s loyalty without working to win the hearts and minds of your team. When everyone is fully engaged and aligned with your company’s mission, goals and values, incredible financial results will follow.  No, I am not talking about Reputation Management tools, although they are wonderful to have and very worthwhile.  I had the pleasure of speaking with Jordan, who talked with me about how Nudge, an internal communication tool that can help hospitality leaders transform the culture of companies by facilitating 2-way communication between teams and leadership.  Is that a Marketing tool? I say, 100% yes! Absolutely!   Your Business’ Reputation is the foundation on which to build any commercial strategy for success. Sales, Marketing, and Revenue initiatives will all be greatly impacted by the loyalty created on the strength of your Guest Experience.  Decision-makers will check your hotels' reviews before booking…   after your sales team has made a call to a potential client.after a planner has seen your meetings and events advertising.after your sales manager has made a great presentation at a tradeshow.after a traveler has seen your hotel on a meta-search site.  The list goes on. Great experiences drive loyalty and return visits better than any incentive. Travelers are willing to pay more and stay more often when friction points are minimal and kind, unpretentious service is in abundance. You lower the expense of acquiring new guests when not only do you keep more guests, but you inspire your guest to share their amazing experience with everyone they know and everyone online.  I hope you enjoy the conversation. If you want to learn how to get the maximum impact from a communication tool like Nudge, please give me a call and I will be happy to help you with your Reputation Optimization plan. www.adelegutman.com
Tripadvisor Success Story, Craig Poole, AHLA General Manager of the Year
25-06-2021
Tripadvisor Success Story, Craig Poole, AHLA General Manager of the Year
I have a great story for you today! If you want a fantastic example of how leadership and the highest standards for guest experience excellence can produce more revenue, more return visits, and more five-star reviews, you won’t find a better example than in the story of Craig Poole, AHLA General Manager of the year and President of Reading Hospitality Management - Doubletree by Hilton. Hear how Craig took a distressed hotel in one of the poorest, most crime-filled cities in Pennsylvania, hired nearly 200 people, many with no experience and no exposure to what service and hospitality looks like. He looked for people who felt hope for the city and the joy of hospitality in their hearts and gave them a chance to build something amazing together that would change people’s lives in the city of Reading. Even ex-felons were given a second chance to turn their lives around for themselves, their families, and their community. Now The Doubletree by Hilton in Reading, Pennsylvania is not only the top-rated Doubletree in the world with a perfect 5-Bubble review score on Tripadvisor, but it also is one of the highest-rated hotels on Tripadvisor in the entire state, and comfortably selling at rates $50 a night its competition. Mr. Poole says that he and his team accomplished this extraordinary level of guest satisfaction, completely aligned with the culture and values of Hilton and Doubletree. Indeed, if everyone at the brand actually embraced the well documented values of Hilton, the entire company would see it’s guest satisfaction scores rise significantly along with revenues and shareholder returns. If you want to hear what might be stopping other GM’s from embracing this more joyful and effective leadership style, you’ll just have to listen. Here are some other great podcasts made by my friends which I am sure you will enjoy: Toni Reese and Craig Poole: Humanize Profit Loren Gray’s Hospitality Marketing Podcast. Lily Mockerman’s Hospitality Revenue Management Podcast: Holly Zoba’s Hospitality Sales Podcast Dean Schmit’s Hospitality Meta Search Podcast: And you can see many of us together on Fridays at 11:30 AM Eastern on This Week in Hospitality Marketing or find us on the Hospitality Marketing Club on Clubhouse! Do you have any questions about how to rank #1 in your market on Tripadvisor, Google my Business, and other Review Sites? Please be sure to send me a comment or message via adelegutman.com and we will be happy to help! Thank you so much for visiting! If you enjoyed this content, please listen, subscribe and follow us the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast: Get Great Reviews on YouTube as well as: Audible, itunes, spotify google podcasts,amazon music, acast; pocketcasts, tunein breaker and deezer.
How to be "Best of the Best" on Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards: With Hotel Owner Gwenn Snider and Adele Gutman
28-05-2021
How to be "Best of the Best" on Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards: With Hotel Owner Gwenn Snider and Adele Gutman
There are so many words of wisdom in this interview with award winning hotelier Gwenn Snider, the owner of Little Gem Resorts. Her hotel, the Nantucket Hotel and Resort in Massachusetts consistently ranks as one of the top three hotels in the USA on the “Best of the Best” TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Awards- the top 25 most highly rated hotels in the USA, based on the reviews of their guests.   There are many people who will share well meaning posts on “how to manage your online reputation”, who have never actually done achieved award-winning guest review success themselves. The mission of the Hospitality Reputation Podcast is to share the philosophy and insights of those who are truly masters at Reputation Cultivation, and whose results speak for themselves.   In this conversation with Nantucket Hotel and Resort Owner, Gwenn Snider, she shared her tips on how she and her team lead by General Manager Jamie Holmes, inspire five-star reviews.    Being obsessive about the details and committed to creating a unique and welcoming guest experience.   It’s all about the small moments, so it is important that everyone feels empowered to be able to change a guest experience in a positive way.   It’s surprising what small detail or kindness can make a hotel a traveler’s favorite experience.   Never take your guests for granted. Be unrelenting. Things don’t get ignored from an operational standpoint.    Truly listen to every guest review and survey and have leadership respond personally to every complaint.   Kindness goes a long way to change someone from a state of stress to a state of relaxation.   Forget, “it’s not possible.” Find a way to say, “Yes!”     For more show notes, visit adelegutman.com/blog   Thank you so much for listening!   Please subscribe, send us a comment, and leave a review on Apple Podcasts, YouTube, or Audible.  You can also join my newsletter by leaving your email on www.adelegutman.com and never miss another episode of the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast.  Here are some other great hospitality podcasts I am sure you will enjoy:  Loren Gray’s Hospitality Marketing Podcast:  Lily Mockerman’s Hospitality Revenue Management Podcast:  Holly Zoba’s Hospitality Sales Podcast:  Dean Schmit’s Hospitality Meta Search Podcast:
How This Hotel Manager Attracts and Develops Hotel Talent with Jeff Kulek and Adele Gutman
15-05-2021
How This Hotel Manager Attracts and Develops Hotel Talent with Jeff Kulek and Adele Gutman
Jeffrey Kulek, the Area Vice President and General Manager London West Hollywood is well known for supporting a fantastic work culture at his hotel.  That great corporate culture has been a supportive environment where employees are invited to contribute to the greater good, grow, learn, and reach for the full potential that they aspire to. An environment like that is life changing for employees, knowing that hospitality offers a path that no matter where you come from, if you are willing to learn and to serve with generosity you too can have a shot at the American Dream.   I hope that hotel General Managers, Hotel Owners, and everyone who aspires to be a hospitality leader will listen and take a bit of Jeffery’s wisdom to heart. It is not only the right thing to do, but this is one of those times when what feels great is also what inspires guest satisfaction, loyalty, and great reviews!   Thank you so much for listening!   Please subscribe, send us a comment, and leave a review on Apple Podcasts, YouTube, or Audible.   You can also join my newsletter by leaving your email on www.adelegutman.com and never miss another episode of the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast.   Here are some other great podcasts I am sure you will enjoy:   Loren Gray’s Hospitality Marketing Podcast:   Lily Mockerman’s Hospitality Revenue Management Podcast:   Holly Zoba’s Hospitality Sales Podcast:   Dean Schmit’s Hospitality Meta Search Podcast:
How to Turn Around a Struggling Hotel on the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast
29-04-2021
How to Turn Around a Struggling Hotel on the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast
How to Turn Around a Struggling Hotel- with Christine Trippi and Adele Gutman This is Adele Gutman, your host of the Hospitality Reputation Podcast, Get Great Reviews, and I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed this conversation with my guest, Christine Trippi. As a former Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Revenue, I have personally experienced extraordinary success with helping hotel managers achieve astonishing revenue results by focusing on reviews and guest satisfaction. Yet even after being recognized by Tripadvisor as having the #1 hotel in the world and some of the top hotels in the USA on Tripadvisor, and by ReviewPro as having the highest rated luxury brand in the world, I am still seeking knowledge on how others learned to elevate and differentiate their business by creating true loyalty through hospitality. I am continually fascinated to learn from others who have also achieved Tripadvisor and guest satisfaction success, longing to discover what their journey was like. What if any alternate routes they have they taken on the road to Five-Star Review Success? Spoiler alert: You should not be surprised when I tell you that while every business has a different story, the steppingstones that each discovers along the way are full of parallels. There are universal truths at work. When you embrace them and put them into your daily discipline, they always bring powerful results. This is great news. It means that if you want more success at your business, and more revenue at your hotel, these proven principles can work for you too! And as you will hear in our conversation, it is actually easier to inspire and empower your team than to struggle by allowing issues to fester without identifying root issues and finding creative solutions. You don’t have to be a 5-Star Hotel to deliver 5-Star hospitality and receive 5-Star reviews! That’s why I was so delighted to invite Christine Trippi for a conversation about her experience as the former General Manager of the Courtyard by Marriott Waukegan. How did Christine step in and take her struggling property from a “red zone” low-rated select service hotel to the #1 hotel out of 81 hotels in Lake County? Guess what? It’s still ranking high as #2 in Lake County, even though Christine left years ago. That’s the power of a strong culture. As long as it is maintained, the magic will linger for a long time. Here are a couple of my favorite quotes from our Christine during our conversation. “Focusing on what you cannot control makes you a victim. Focusing on what you can control makes you a Viking.” “It does not matter what four walls you are in. It only matters who is inside your four walls.” - Christine Trippi, Author of Yes is the Answer. You’ll definitely want to listen in to hear more about the four things within your four walls that you can control and lots more tips and insights as Christine and I share our philosophies that any business can replicate to optimize your revenue and guest loyalty. In these challenging times when hotels and restaurants are either struggling with consumer confidence or employee shortages, it is important to note that this work that Christine and I espouse, serves not only to increase guest satisfaction and revenue goals but also develops strong, empowered, and engaged teams who are happy when they are challenged and contributing members of a successful team. If you enjoyed this episode, please like and share it with your friends and leave a review on Audible or Apple Podcasts. Never miss an episode of the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast! Subscribe and discover more at  you have any questions about how to rank #1 in your market on Tripadvisor, Google my Business, and other Review Sites? Please be sure to send me a comment or message via adelegutman.com and we will be happy to help!
Smart Hospitality Operations = Smart Marketing! A talk with Stuart Butler of Fuel Travel
15-04-2021
Smart Hospitality Operations = Smart Marketing! A talk with Stuart Butler of Fuel Travel
Smart Hospitality Operations = Smart Marketing! A talk with Stuart Butler of Fuel Travel   GM’s, DOSM’s, and HOTEL OWNERS- You won’t want to miss this episode! Whether you are a veteran in the industry or one of the many newly minted GMs and DOSMs out there that rose to the occasion when duty called during the past year of COVID-19, this episode is for you. My guest, Stuart Butler is the Chief Operating Officer of Fuel Travel Marketing based in South Carolina is one of the top Hospitality Marketers in the country and the host of the award winning Fuel Hospitality Marketing Podcast. Stuart and I agree the power of guest reviews is one of the most underutilized and misunderstood marketing opportunities for most hotels. “Reviews are the byproduct of how you operate,” says Stuart Butler. But they are the also foundation of your Hospitality Sales, Marketing, and Revenue success, so they require a team approach. I hope you will listen to this episode and think about how to update or initiate your reputation management strategy with full team alignment. Across the industry, we hear leaders speak about leveraging guest data. Guest feedback is guest data, yet because reputation, guest satisfaction, and guest reviews fall into both marketing and operations, often leaders feel it is not their area. For that reason, reputation is either completely ignored, it’s relegated to someone without the leadership position to truly analyze and leverage the data, and sometimes a third party is paid to make it seem as though the feedback was heard, even though it wasn’t actually dealt with at the property. Instead, let guest feedback be the spark of daily creativity and innovation at the property. Let operations and marketing embrace the voice of the guest for insights as to how to make the experience of booking and staying at the hotel easier, faster, more convenient, and absolutely more delightful. Are you wondering how to change your processes to create more loyal guests? Are you wondering what you need to change in your communications to best win new guests and manage expectations to avoid disappointment for your guests and conflict for your teams to handle? Begin deeply listening to and acting upon the feedback your guest took the time to give you. Every day is a great day to implement innovation. Just look at your reviews for friction points and ask your team to suggest small actions and creative ways to fix or soften friction points to reduce complaints. If you are a GM or a DOSM, you cannot afford to be absent from this conversation with your guests and your line staff. In this podcast, we discuss using reviews, aka “The Voice of the Customer” to: Identify Friction PointsSpark InnovationInform Marketing DecisionsOptimize ROIMotivate TeamsDevelop Future LeadersLower Cost of AcquisitionAttract New GuestsCreate True LoyaltyManage ExpectationsCreate Product and Service DifferentiationElevate Perceived Value Enjoy the podcast and please let us know if you have any questions for Adele.  Send us your email on www.adelegutman.com and never miss another episode of the Hospitality Reputation Marketing Podcast.  check out Stuart Butler’s Fuel Travel Podcast:  Gray’s Hospitality Marketing Podcast:  Hospitality Marketing Podcast:   Holly Zoba’s Hospitality Sales Podcast:  Schmit’s Hospitality Meta Search Podcast:
Tripadvisor Returns to its Traveler-Centric Mission with the new Tripadvisor Plus
16-03-2021
Tripadvisor Returns to its Traveler-Centric Mission with the new Tripadvisor Plus
Alert: this assessment was based on a minimum 10% Discount off BAR for Hoteliers. If you are offered the program based on a higher discount than what the media and I were informed of, please be sure to do the math yourself to see if that new offer will work for you. And remember, I always prefer to give my hotels direct and loyal guests the best offer on our own websites. I won’t lie. Tripadvisor has been my favorite website for two decades. If you sell travel, it should be yours too! Hundreds of millions of people use the site every month. If you know how to make your business stand out from the crowd on Tripadvisor, and believe me, I do, you can leverage the world’s largest travel guidance website, and giving yourself a huge billboard. I have devoted 20 years to honing a five-star review system that is so powerful in attracting bookings I really don’t know why everyone doesn’t work this way. Adele’s Tips: Remember it is a fenced-in rate. Make sure you have an offer that is competitive and enticing to the traveler yet a win for you to get direct and commission-free. You won’t want to have any commissionable rates out there for less that your own websites member rate or Tripadvisor Plus. Make sure you inspire as many 5-Star reviews as possible by treating every guest like a VIP. If you need help with a plan to help your hotel earn consistent 5 Star reviews, I promise, I can help you like no one else can. We can work on this on a short-term coaching program  But first, why not schedule a free, No Obligation, first session with me at adelegutman.com. I will look at the reviews with you and give you as much free advice if I can. I am happy to help everyone recover as quickly as possible. Make sure that the rate is competitive with the OTAs. It won’t help you get direct business if you give better rates to OTAs. I love that this move by Tripadvisor is making a strong distinction from the OTAs which focus on commission, and this focuses on creating great experiences and providing knowledge and value for travelers. When and if you do try it out, I'm very eager to hear how it is working for you. Please comment below or write to me at adele@adelegutman.com If you are a hotelier who needs help with Tripadvisor, please feel free to sign up for a free or low-cost first session with me at www.adelegutman.com
The Hotel Mogel, Larry Mogelonsky- Creating Experiences that Inspire Great Reviews
05-02-2021
The Hotel Mogel, Larry Mogelonsky- Creating Experiences that Inspire Great Reviews
Larry Mogelonsky is the most prolific author on hospitality with over 1000 articles published over the last decade, and six books, including the latest two, Hotel Mogel and More Hotel Mogel, which is on my desk now, and I highly recommend it. A few quotes from our chat:About traveling for inspiration, before Covid, Larry and his brilliant wife Maureen traveled 30% of the time and tried to visit over 35 new hotels each year. “The goal in going to a new property any property for or from my standpoint is learning what is it that this hotel is doing that is new or unique or different that can be applied to other hotels to either to improve revenue, improve loyalty, improve guest satisfaction, or create a new experience” “There is so much we can learn from each other so many opportunities so we can take advantage of to enhance how we operate how we live and importantly how we as hoteliers can do our job better and it represents another one of those seismic shifts which are going to change how we look at hotels, and importantly how hoteliers look at their guests.” About the Guest Forward Concept: “It’s all about you- the guest. It’s not about us. We are going to take care of you as best we can within the facility that we have. No, we haven’t put in the fastest elevators, and the world’s thickest mattresses, and the world’s largest bathrooms, because that doesn’t matter to you. Ultimately, what matters to you is, do you feel comfortable. What matters is that the guest feels good about being there and if you do that, that will be reflected in the reviews very quickly.” “The flip side is don't pay attention don't do anything don't handle reviews people start to get surly and nasty and you don't care and watch what happens to your ADR your revenue and your percent occupancy and your staff who won't be happy because guests are not happy and the spiral will spin downward very quickly.”  Larry is also the Managing Director of Hotel Mogel Consulting.  Gutman can be reached at
How to be the #3 Rated Restaurant in the USA, An Interview with Asst GM, Hall's Chophouse, Sara Faienza
01-01-2021
How to be the #3 Rated Restaurant in the USA, An Interview with Asst GM, Hall's Chophouse, Sara Faienza
Did you ever wonder how restaurants like French Laundry, Daniel, and Hall’s Chop House top the charts on review sites like Tripadvisor?  I recently had the pleasure to experience dining at the #3 rated restaurant in the USA according to the 2020 Best of the Best Tripadvisor Travelers Choice Awards. The service and experience as so warm, welcoming, theatrical, yet completely unpretentious. I loved it even though it is a steak house and I am a vegetarian! My interview for this episode is Sara Faienza, the Assistant General Manager of Hall’s Chophouse, a lawyer by profession, who could not deny her passion for hospitality. In this conversation we discuss: How the culture of the company was built by Bill Hall, who started his career in Hospitality as a busboy and went on to luxury hotels working in Ritz Carlton among other prestigious and guest-centric brands. Every person who walks in the door is treated like family. Everyone is a VIP. Every day is a special occasion. How they keep the team happy and focused on their mission of building customers for life who will return and share their experiences with others. How their reputation, great reviews, and guest experience success allows them to provide generously for their team as well as their community, all while expanding their business empire to new brands and new locations. By the way, when Sara speaks of SNOB, she is talking about their sister restaurant, Slightly North of Broad. The Hall’s Restaurant Group also includes Rita’s Seaside Grill and High Cotton.