WHEN it comes to optimising revenue and attracting as many customers as possible, hotel marketing strategies have a crucial role to play, states the Revfine.com, a revenue management blog for the hotel, hospitality and travel industry.
Here are some strategies hotels can use to attract guests and ensure good financial results:
Focus on Personalisation
For hotels, one of the best ways to break through is to deliver more tailored, personal marketing messages, so that they are relevant to the audience that sees them. Personalisation can also be used during the booking process, making intelligent recommendations, similar to the way services like Amazon and Netflix work. Of course, personalisation can go further still. For instance, imagine targeting former customers with marketing messages in the lead up to their birthday, or in the months before the anniversary of their last visit.
Create a Customer Loyalty Scheme
Create of a customer loyalty programme. These schemes are beneficial in terms of marketing for several reasons. Firstly, they make people more likely to return to your hotel, because customers that sign up want to actually benefit from being part of the scheme. In addition, their friends, family and colleagues may hear about their rewards and sign up in order to benefit too.
Build an Engaging Website
A large number still opt to visit the hotel’s official website and book directly. It is, therefore, absolutely essential that you take the time to build an engaging, attractive, functional website, which makes a good first impression. Aside from being visually appealing and engaging, your website needs to offer all of the important information customers may need before booking a room.
Reap the Rewards from Content Marketing
Content marketing ranks among the most effective hotel marketing strategies, for a number of reasons, including its ability to improve visibility on search engines and attract visitors searching the internet for things other than hotels. It also gives your audience a reason to keep coming back to your website, looking for fresh content. The most common example of content marketing for hotels is a blog.
Make Use of SEO Techniques
It is important for hotel owners to understand that a huge number of modern customers use search engines like Google to find hotels and make bookings. For this reason, one of the single most important and effective hotel marketing strategies is to make use of search engine optimisation (SEO) techniques.
Focus on Review Websites
According to research from TripAdvisor, 77 percent of people say they ‘usually’ or ‘always’ reference online reviews before booking a hotel. That is significantly greater than the number of people who check out online reviews before booking a restaurant or visiting a tourist attraction, which emphasises its importance.
Take to Social Media
Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram can be a godsend for hotel owners, because they offer a multitude of ways to advertise to customers. For instance, you could promote your hotel using social media posts, competitions, photos, business pages and even paid advertising campaigns.
Prioritise Mobile Optimisation
As stated earlier in this document, mobile optimisation is important for any hotel that wishes to maximise visibility on search engines. However, mobile optimisation also extends far beyond this and many of the best hotel marketing strategies succeed precisely because they target mobile users and capitalise on smartphone technology.
Run Pay-Per-Click Advertising Campaigns
Pay-per-click adverts are one of the most common hotel marketing strategies – and for good reason. They offer hotels the chance to put marketing messages out there and to target those messages towards users with relevant interests. Moreover, the hotel only pays when the ads are actually clicked, making them cost-effective.
Try to Create a Viral Campaign
For marketing professionals, creating a viral campaign is the holy grail, because it means a promotional message is rapidly shared across the internet by its own audience. This circumvents problems associated with consumer cynicism and also means the campaign achieves excellent reach at minimal cost.
Capitalise on Remarketing Opportunities
Studies suggest that the abandonment rate for hotel bookings stands at somewhere in the region of 75 percent. This means that out of every four people that start the process for booking a room at your hotel, three will back out. In many cases, this is because they get distracted, get cold feet, or decide to carry out more research. This means it is highly likely there are significant number of people out there right now, who have shown an interest in your hotel, and who came close to making a booking, but who failed to follow through. Remarketing allows you to capitalise on this by intelligently reminding them of your hotel and their interest in it.
Differentiate Yourself From Rivals
Next, you need to think about what separates your hotel from other hotels in the nearby area and, indeed, in other locations. Try to create a list of the unique features of your hotel and if you are unable to think of many, try to come up with some ideas you could implement in the near future, in order to stand out from the crowd. Once you know what it is that makes you different, put these things front and centre in your advertising campaigns and marketing emails, so that potential customers know that you are offering something completely different.
Emphasise Your Location
Some hotels fail to reach their marketing potential, because they are too literal with the idea of promoting their hotel. While it is important to advertise what your hotel has to offer – whether its excellent rooms, excellent customer service, excellent prices, or excellent facilities – this should not be the limit of your campaigns. Instead, use your promotional content to speak about your location. After all, a large number of your potential customers will be more interested in what there is to do around the hotel, rather than what there is to do within it.
Deliver An Excellent Customer Experience
In the end, no amount of hotel marketing strategies can make up for poor customer service, so in order to optimise revenue, you are going to need to deliver an excellent customer experience and make sure people know about it. This means taking the time to do the little things better than your competitors.
Do Not Neglect Email Marketing
In the modern age of content marketing, social media posts, search engine optimisation techniques and pay-per-click advertising, it can be easy to neglect more traditional email marketing. Yet, this method still has a lot of offer most businesses and can be especially beneficial for hotels.