Boostly Bitesize: Creating and Utilising Google Forms

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In a podcast episode of Boostly Bitesize, Mark revisits the concept of bite-sized content, inspired by a recurring question about utilizing Google forms for guest information collection. The episode focuses on a strategy to alleviate friction at check-in by gathering guest data at the reservation stage. Mark introduces a simple Google form, designed to expedite the check-in process and enhance guest experience by requesting essential information such as email, name, and phone number, along with optional questions tailored for market research and personalized guest services.

He emphasizes the form's adaptability and its importance for direct booking strategies, suggesting it as a tool for analyzing booking sources and optimizing marketing efforts. 

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Timestamps (audio)



[00:00:00] Mark: All right. Good morning. Good afternoon. Good evening and welcome to an episode of Boostly Bitesize. And I used to do these loads back in the day and I haven't done one for a while, but on the back of yesterday's, uh, market and review live, there was a question that I kept getting seen in comments and messages, and it was about the Google form.

[00:00:20] And what I wanted to do in this very bite-sized podcast edition of the Boostly podcast is document it. Label it so that when I get these questions in the future, it always happens. I can just go watch this video. So the question in, uh, for context for those who don't know is that when we did the market and review live yesterday with, um, James, who's got the properties in Tenerife, we're talking about collecting the data sooner because he was getting guest information at the point of checking.

Problems with the point of check-in

[00:00:48] And the problem with the point of check is, it can sometimes cause friction. And if you want to cause, uh, uncertainty or annoyance, it's create friction. So how do you remove that? But you still want to get the data, guest email, phone number, et cetera. You do it at the point of reservation. Now, let me just share my screen as I quickly bring up this, this page.

[00:01:11] Uh, here we go. So this is the form that I'm talking about and it's super easy, Kate takes five minutes to create, but you've got it for life. All right. And it is a very simple Google form. The copy is please fill in this form to speed up the guest checking process and to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

[00:01:28] We ask for all guests to fill in the below. The content is email, first name, last name, cell number, or mobile phone number, depending on where you are in the world and, the number of people in your party. Checking date. Now, these two here, they can be removed. These are optional. I wouldn't say these are mandatory.

Mandatory questions

[00:01:49] Uh, These next two, uh, definitely mandatory, but you can amend them to suit you. So for example, uh, the question that we put down here on this one for a client of ours was what was the deciding factor in why you picked us as your place to stay? That is mandatory because it helps you with your market research.

[00:02:07] So what is it about your property or properties or your brand? That, that guest booked, whether it was directly via Airbnb or overbooking. com or other. And then the other one, because of the client we're working with, we've discovered it was very much a, you stay with us because you're celebrating something, we asked that question because that was a, uh, a funnel question to go.

[00:02:31] If they put birthday, then we had an automation to go in to say, Hey, would you like our birthday package? If it was an anniversary. We had an automation going, Oh, would you like our anniversary package? Okay. Uh, you can put, where did you discover us? Could be Airbnb, Instagram, et cetera. So if some, out of 10 bookings, seven people are saying Instagram, you know that you need to be doing more on your Instagram.

[00:02:56] If out of 10 people that's saying nine is saying Airbnb, obviously Airbnb is the third-party site that we're using. It's going to drive in the traffic. So you need to focus a little bit more on your Airbnb. The goal of all of this is to get your direct bookings up and up and up and up. But one of the tactics that I explained yesterday is to make sure that you're on all of the listing sites so that you can then target different demographics.

[00:03:22] And then from there, you can do your own 80 20 analysis. 20 per cent of sites are doing 80 per cent of your results and then you focus, on them. Okay. But that's another podcast that you can go and easily check out boostly. co. UK forward slash listing sites. Go and watch that. So these two questions are for you.

[00:03:40] Um, I would advise you to do no more than two here. You can change these at any point. The cool thing about this form is that. Five minutes and you're done. But if a month down the line, you want to change that question, you can do it. And then, uh, the final one, uh, we have a digital, uh, guidebook packed with tops and tips, places to eat and visit.

[00:03:59] Would you like us to send and keep in touch via email? This is the opt-in. This is the, uh, the security to say, Hey, this guest has said, yes, I'd like to keep in touch. That is the box. And that is mandatory. And as you can see, we put it as a required field. And again, you may be thinking, Oh, this is annoying.

Do not base business decisions on personal preferences

[00:04:15] I wouldn't like to fill this in. And I say this a lot, do not base business decisions on your personal preference. You are not your guest. Okay. Uh, so do not base it on your assumptions. People will fill this in because of the message that we put, and this is the message, right? I'm obviously in question for hosts.

[00:04:36] Every PMS is different in where this messaging is, but this is the copy that we created. Okay. Very simple. It's not a massive paragraph. It's not an essay. It's not a book. It's probably less than a hundred words, but it's sent at the point of booking. As you can see, the template says welcome message. The copy is as follows.

[00:04:59] If you can't see it on the screen. Hello there. We appreciate your decision to book with us at Escape Bookings. We appreciate it, we wanted to take this opportunity to thank you. You must read this message in full. Grabs the attention, that's the hook as they call it in the world of copy. We kindly request you fill out the form in the link below as soon as possible.

[00:05:18] This will help speed up your checking process on the day of arrival. Okay, so now they've gone, wow, I do not want to have a lengthy checking process. I'm going to fill this in. And then the link to the form, we'll be in touch with you again, before your stay and provide you with some top tips for Orlando.

[00:05:33] Thank you. And have a great stay PS. Do you have an Instagram account? All of that is optional. We've been messing and changing around with that. And it's been cool because we've been able to get more Instagram followers by doing this. So this goes in here. Now, if you want to know where in the process, we've got automation built-in as part of

[00:05:51] Guestie.

[00:05:52] Mark: And as you can see if I come back. One more coming to the automated messages, scheduled messages. It's a welcome message. So it's sent via the platform. Okay. It is sent via SMS, 10 minutes after the confirmation, and five minutes after the confirmation. Okay. So we've got a cool guest. Cause you can do SMS.

[00:06:14] So it goes straight into their phone. The welcome message gets sent on the platform. And there's also as well, um, an email, that is sent out one day after confirmation. So Tyann from Touchday did a fantastic talk during the Book Direct virtual summit. If you haven't checked it out, go back and find it about the communication flow, more is, is better than less.

[00:06:37] So this is where we put it in five minutes after the confirmation when their dopamine is at the highest when you book a stay, you're excited. Right. Okay. And that is the point where to send that message. And by sending that message in there, you're getting them at the point of the highest level of communication, which is cool.

[00:06:56] And they will fill it in. And if they don't, then you can set up reminders. Along the way. Okay. So use your PMS, and tap into that. If you haven't got a PMS, or property management software, go into your Airbnb and add it to the automated message in there, people are going to say, well, I can't put a link in. Yes, you can.

[00:07:16] It's fine because this is after the booking. And if people say, well, I can't do it, you can, it's just like sending a Google map link. It's just like sending a what free words. It's just like sending your digital guidebook. You can put that in after the point of the booking. You're not going to put a link in an inquiry message because that's what they flag.

[00:07:34] But after the point of booking, it's fine. So you have it as your welcome message, pop it in there. And I guess we'll fill that information in and if you can start now, and if you can get 50 by the end of the year, that's 50 emails that you've collected 50 pieces of data, 50 phone numbers, 50 surveys that you have done, and you can take that information and you can grow with it.

[00:07:55] Okay. This is Boostly Bitesize, less than 10 minutes. Um, hopefully, you've enjoyed it. If you have done, make sure you like and comment and subscribe and do all those cool things, wherever you're tuning in from. I'll do more of these. As I get more questions pop up and I've got the time to do so, uh, but we're gonna have another episode back in two days.

[00:08:12] Make sure you go check out the YouTube channel, which is Bruce Lee. Go grab the audio and do all the cool things and we'll see you very soon. Thank you very much, everybody having a blast. Gonna get it on the Bruce Lee podcast. Bruce Lee. Let Bruce Lee 'cause it's so hard on the teas, loosely making up those rhymes.

[00:08:27] Don't write it, just do it loosely.