Marketing begins with empathy. We have many years of experience in digital marketing, but we have many more years of experience traveling, checking into hotels, and researching the best deals for the best prices. As owners, designers, and marketers of hotels, we sometimes become immune to the client experience. We are so influenced by the internal point of view that it can be hard to understand exactly how our customers think and feel. Before setting your hotel marketing plan, you need to walk through the experience of checking into your hotel to truly understand how guests arrive at your door. Hospitality is, after all, all about the client.
Whenever you find yourself in a foreign city looking for any service, you likely turn to Google for advice. The hotel industry is no different. Google: “Hotels in [your city].” Does your hotel come up? Google prioritizes companies with Google business, so if you do not have it, a HUGE number of potential clients will never find you. While travelers might not rely entirely on Google results, it is often one of the first places they check because it provides all the necessary logistics required to start narrowing down decisions. For hotels, this includes prices, a city map, ratings, and amenities. Start by making sure your Google Business account is set up. The more information you provide, the more likely it is that Google will display your company. Lastly, add plenty of professional photos to help travelers make decisions.
Mobile Booking Opportunities:
Mobile users are everywhere. More and more often, travelers are using their cell phones to book last minute reservations. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly and guests have the ability to book instantly. This includes displayed prices in a way that makes decisions easy and fast.
78% of all Americans have Facebook. Each of those people check their Facebook page around3-5 times per day. Facebook is a very convenient way to advertise your hotel because it allows you to target your ideal guests directly. Choose business travelers or families with small children. You can even select the approximate salary of the people who will see your advertisement. Make sure you use an image that clearly displays a guest room and the price. Include amenities such as “free Wifi.” Then, all you have to do is select a budget. Facebook tracks all metrics and tells you exactly how many people saw the ad as well as how many clicked on it. Easy, but effective.
Google ads is another great way to advertise. It allows you to automatically appear in the top search results for desired keywords. Make sure to spend some time researching your keywords. Then select the region for display. With Google, you only pay for clicks, so you have a great ROI.
If you have a beautiful hotel or location, show it off! What’s more convincing than a virtual tour? With the rise of virtual reality, it is now easier than ever to create an immersive web experience. In the past, it was a complicated process to weave images together. Now, most of us can take 360-degree images with our phones. Choose some of the most striking views of your hotel, like your lobby, a conference space, or a suite, and set your phone to 360 mode and rotate slowly and steadily. If you have beautiful scenery outside, you can capture an incredible photo of the sunset with a 360 image.
Ask for Reviews:
New guests rely on the testimony of others. How will anyone know you have the best hotel in the city if no one helps spread the word. Make sure reviews are easy to find on your website so that when guests want to compliment your services, they know where to go. If someone shares their great experience with you personally, inquire where they heard of your hotel. If the answer is an online source, politely ask for reviews about their great experience. Google and TripAdvisor are some of the top referring sites, but they are heavily reliant on reviews. You might even offer discount codes or other incentives for customers that take the time to write a review.
Understanding your customers comes from asking questions and listening. In a competitive industry, the only way to stay ahead is by keeping up with your customer’s needs. Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about target marketing.