Adrian Moore is the best concierge in the world. At least, according to British travel magazine Monacle, he is. He works at the Four Seasons in Paris, knows all the best spots and restaurants, is intimately aware of any festivals or special events in his city and is, by any account, an authority on all things about Paris. As a business traveller, I appreciate a concierge like this. Unfortunately, the majority of hotels never have anyone like Adrian. Instead, they staff their "concierge" desk with someone who was checking people in at the front desk just the week before.
In those empty cases, the so-called concierge is no better than an Internet enabled computer with access to city resources, a few travel blogs and Yelp (or another restaurant review site). The most interesting thing about Adrian Moore that I didn't mention, however, is that he also happens to be a blogger. And his blog allows him to explore his city and publish his thoughts about it. Which leads me to an interesting question – what if all concierges were bloggers?
Or, put another way to broaden this question beyond the hotel industry, what if the person who was most directly responsible for interacting with your customers used social media more often? This idea works out well for the Four Seasons in Paris with Adrian, but also has worked well for Comcast with Frank Eliason using Twitter as his tool of choice to actively and proactively help customers. Social media can help amplify the voice of any individual to help them bring a personality to a business. The concierge is a term recognized for hotels, but it is a role that many businesses could use in some way. If you had to point to someone within your organization who could be your "concierge" – who would it be?
Once you answer this, you can also answer one the biggest questions that many companies ask before starting to actively use social media — who is the person (or people) within our organization that should start blogging, tweeting, conversing and responding on our behalf online?
It's the concierge, and if you don't have one … go find one.
9 thoughts on “Why Your Business Needs A Concierge”
Rohit – great post and very true. Concierge is one of the roles that I attribute to a great Church Bartender when I’m training people. Having that kind of awareness of a city is so key and knowing how to connect people with ease.
Communication = awareness. Awareness is the key to better customer relationships and new sales, so whatever tools make communication better, quicker, faster, more accurate… etc.
I agree completely. The concierge — or public-facing contact — needs to be trusted, knowledgeable about the brand and knowledgeable about the surrounding area.
Often, those on the front lines for their businesses — especially on the social web — are the non-stakeholders. Frank’s a perfect example of someone who knows his company, knows his landscape and is trusted by his digital contacts…even if they don’t trust the overall brand.
Enjoyed this post, Rohit. Even sent it to a couple of my friends in the hotel business.
Rohit, you have no idea how relieved this post made me feel about hotels and their so-called concierge desk. It’s just amazing how they stuff you up with brochures and handouts instead of truly engaging with the visitors.
I came to a point now where I don’t even think about stopping at this desk when I’m in unknown territory, unless I need to write something down and I can’t find any paper. Lately all I do is fire-up my browser and just rely on what others online have to say.
And that’s where you make a good case – customers should be able to engage with someone from YOUR organization, not the other way around. –Paul
I agree with this not only from a marketing point but from a career point that could fit in with every occupation. Two years ago a teacher at the high school where I work won a very elite award. When it came time for the presentation, no one knew exactlly who it would be. A top teacher in the nation was from our school and no one from our own school could figure out who it was? This sounds like your example, but to further it what of the people who promoted that person to concierge? Did they not know they put someone in a position that could not promote their brand? They did not know their people well and their people did not know one another.
My medical website design company, amedicaldesign (www.amedicaldesign.com), handles my Twitter & Facebook. They have excellent copywriters and know my business just as well as I do. Of course I approve everything beforehand with minor editing. But overall, my orthopedic website is getting great social media exposure!
very interesting post about a Concierge. It would be great if my sales teams were like Concierges. Great post ill add you to my RSS reader
I’ve never left a comment, and rarely I comment on other blogs but I read you everyday, and often more than once a day.
I support you on this and I’ll try to leave few words here and there.
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I totally agree with this article..I’ve also been to a city that I really didn’t know all that well. And when I would ask the concierge if he knew where a good restaurant where I could get some Spanish cuisine, he handed me some brouchers. I was like why are you a concierge in this city if you have know idea what is in your city?
I own a personal shopper and errand service in Cincinnati, OH. One of the questions I ask someone before I hire them as a Personal Shopper is,”name 3 fine dining restaurants in Cincinnati that you would suggest to someone if you were asked what restaurants would you recommend in town.” I also ask other questions to see how much knowledge they have of the city that they live in.
Anyone visiting the greater Cincinnati, OH area that needs a personal shopper or errand service, you can visit our website a http://www.CincyPersonalShopper.com or check us out on twitter @PersonalSh0pper
Thanks for the great post.