The Guest Experience and the Power of #HITEC

Written by: Artak Gevorgian, CHAE, MBA — Official HITEC® Minneapolis 2019 Guest Blogger

HITEC is very similar to the hotel experience — it is all about how it makes guests feel. So, what do moods and excitement have to do with attending HITEC? I think a majority of HITEC attendees and exhibitors will agree when I say: Everything.

Consider guest behavior in hotels. Human beings are largely sensitive and perceptive. We are attracted to the places, people and products that make us feel worthy and good. What produces a good emotional state at HITEC? Obviously, a lot of things.

The location, service, atmosphere, consistency, cleanliness and more all affect the moods and feelings of HITEC attendees. Honestly, I believe it is the level of hospitality and service provided by HITEC’s organizer HFTP and its sponsors — as well as the quality of personal interactions with exhibitors and all other attendees (equivalent to other guests in a hotel) — that drive this event and generates passionate responses.

What contributes to the level of service? For starters, there is the HFTP Multi-Event mobile app where you can access a day-to-day schedule right on your cell phone. Upon arrival at the front desk, there are people offering help with registration, housing and the mobile app, where you can also find leaflets, maps and bags of informative inserts. You can check in to the conference at the various signup kiosks.

As we say in the hotel business, the check-in experience is one of the key points in guest satisfaction. So, at this moment, HITEC offers a very positive attendee (or guest) experience.

After experiencing HITEC’s various offerings of education and networking — such as the super sessions, concurrent sessions, beverage breaks and networking sessions — in the very first day, HITEC attendees then take advantage of their complimentary invitation to the HITEC Opening Party Presented by Samsung®. This year, the opening party was held in the Armory Minneapolis with the American rock band Daughtry serving as the entertainment. (Comparatively, hotel general managers may host cocktail parties for loyal and potential customers to improve the guest experience).

Also worthy of mention is the Entrepreneur20X (E20X) competition, where innovative startups of the hospitality technology industry compete to bring their dreams to life! This year, TrakNProtect won the E20X Judge’s Choice Award, which was determined by a panel of expert judges, and they will receive the grand prize of $5,000 USD. They are still competing for the People’s Choice Award, which is voted on throughout the HITEC conference by attendees via the mobile app.

There have been two days (another two days to go) of positive impressions that indicates HFTP’s intentions to create the very best guest experience throughout the entire guest journey in HITEC. It starts from how to map a guest (attendee) journey, identify risks to the guest experience and capitalize on all touch points. This service-oriented environment, along with long-term experiences and obtained skills from each past HITEC event, allows HFTP to delight its guests and entice them to return – which is the Power of HITEC.

Artak Gevorgian is multi-property director of finance, W Muscat and JW Marriott Muscat with Marriott International in Oman, Middle East. He is an official event guest blogger for HITEC Minneapolis 2019, taking place June 17–20 at the Minneapolis Convention Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Check back on HFTP Connect for more of Artak’s experiences at HITEC this year.

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