With the emerging trend of online prominence of businesses from every niche, the hospitality industry is not untouched. Moreover, since hotel business in particular is directly connected to tourism, it essentially requires attracting tourists from all across the globe. Since internet today stands to be the key to access the entire world in a few clicks, it is wise for hotels to have a comprehensive marketing plan focusing not only on offline marketing but also online strategies as they will lead to success.
For marketers in hotel industry, it is important to embark on their brand identity and awareness to attract potential business hold on to customer base and at the same time keep up the iconic status in business to create loyal customer base.
Here are some tips and ideas for professional hotel marketing by experts to help you trigger your business accent.
While there has been a stupendous change in the marketing patterns with the introduction of online platforms, where people tweet business news, send email notifications to client leads or promote business pages on Facebook and LinkedIn, you cannot overlook the importance of offline marketing which till date remains to be a prime pillar behind successful business. Here you will come across some of the most handy offline marketing tips from experts in the profession.
Patrrick Schock is the Campaign Manager at Business Apps who has sheer expertise in marketing and promotion of businesses and shares his tips for offline marketing.
1. Business Cards
Distributing your business cards whenever you come across an opportunity helps to spread your business advertisement. Put them into magazines at your doctor or any office, pin them on public bulletin board, and distribute them with newspapers.
Participating in welfare or charity events through donation is a good way to establish connections and build reputation. These events often have banners and posters highlighting the sponsors, which help spread your hotel name as well.
3. Participating in Events as Speakers
Taking up the opportunity to speak and communicate with people directly at events related to your business is a smart way to market your business. You can choose to participate in tourism fares, tourism promoting events, etc .
4. Local Print Publications
Newspapers and magazines always look for stirring news, information directly from the business or even interesting facts. You can contact your local print publication houses and offer them your latest holiday tour plans, hotel packages for the season, new facilities of your hotel and offer them interesting behind the scene stories of your business as well.
5. Trade Shows
Trade shows offer you a direct platform to compare your hotel marketing strategies with that of your competitors. While you are able to showcase your services, accommodation facilities, over the top customer care, you can also check the horizon of competition and groom up yourself.
6. Revamp your Presentation
In hospitality industry the presentation, facilities, scale of luxury in accommodation matters a lot. Incorporating enhanced facilities like a banquet hall, valet parking, redesigning the lounge can help to attract more tourists and potential customers as well.
7. Celebrate Success
Celebrating your success in business with new targets new achievements and sharing them through the local media can offer you a prominent visibility in the industry. In addition to these, events like winter carnival, summer fest, etc. also attract tourists.
Internet being the most powerful tool to communicate with millions of people across the world just through a few clicks is also the best tool for marketing. Moreover, in the hospitality industry when you need to promote your hotel business, linking with domestic as well as international tourism networks become important. In 2005 as per records, global hotels received tentatively more bookings through web portals compared to offline tour agents. This has potentially boosted the hotels across the world to take a keen initiative in online marketing of their business. Besides, the advancement of smart phones has made it more essential to enhance online distribution channels as these days travelers prefer to book hotels through mobiles.
Paige Ellingson is a professionally well established senior consulting analyst in an IT firm and here she shares her views of online marketing strategies apt for current online promotion scenario.
The demand for accelerated mobile pages or AMPs has increased overwhelmingly and users are looking forward to advanced experiences on multichannel process. Since more and more users use mobiles nowadays as their primary device to search for hotels, you need to make your site easy to be accessed from mobiles with swiftly loading and highly responsive pages. Moreover, between 2013 and 2015, bookings of hotels counted to 42% through mobiles.
9. Join GHA
Hotel owners focusing on promoting their business online need to perform a broad online marketing strategy. Besides implementing organic search efforts, it is also effective to try paid search efforts. And if you are into hotel business you must join Google Hotel Ads or GHA where specifically you can showcase your hotel ad and seek for maximum visibility of your ad over the net.
10. Content marketing
For long, content has been the key for acquiring successful online prominence. It stands to be an effective tool in acquiring high end traffic and articulating interests among readers.
11. Marketing Automation
This is the process of using advanced technologies and dedicated software to automate definite repetitive tasks in advertising. The automation software programs enable hotel owners to manage their entire online marketing strategies and promotional ventures on websites, email, social media etc. Efficient marketing automation tools generally perform these key management tasks like marketing campaign streamlining and management, storage of customer data, analysis of marketing campaigns, leads, customer data, etc.
12. Social media marketing
Dynamic change in the entire online marketing scenario has brought the importance of social media marketing into limelight. Nowadays social media has emerged as the most active tool on net which offers you the edge to easily reach out to your targeted market, catch attention of customers and interact with them one on one.
Are Morch is a prominent Hotel Social Media Consultant who is also a hotel entrepreneur, writer as well as blogger and here are some of his insights of online marketing strategies for hotels.
13. Spot your Niche
Nowadays hotel businesses have changed extensively. To allure potential business, most hotels are clinging on to specific niche of their own like boutique hotels, luxury hotels, or thematic strengths, which you can effectively utilize in your online marketing venture. All you need to do is use keywords for SEO which highlight your niche, which will attract tourists looking for those specific facilities.
14. Maintain your Hotel’s Luxury Class
Offering constant discounts on your luxury hotels, may potentially ruin the image and perception of your luxury hotel. Tourists visiting your hotel or even coming across your site or ads regarding discounts on your hotel may wonder and doubt the reality of your luxury quotient overall, since luxury hotels rarely offer too many discounts.
15. SEO for Luxury Services
When you are managing a SEO campaign for your luxury hotel projecting just a luxury hotel is not enough. You essentially need to highlight the luxury services which make you stand apart from the competition. Advertising about your strengths like the wine cellar or your elite spa, extensive welcome for guests can make tourists more interested in checking out your hotel.
16. Reward Programs
In case of luxury hotels, you must launch sophisticated online marketing campaigns. Therefore, eliminate using discounts for luxury hotels, rather implement reward programs that are sophisticated as well as interesting to tourists, who will get across the idea that they essentially need to spend to reap the benefits of rewards. 17. Using Best Hotel Pictures
When it is about promoting a hotel online, you would like to highlight the features, benefits, rooms, etc. Therefore, to attract tourists to book online, you need to convey a realistic message of which services they are booking, so it is the best to upload best shots of your hotel, rooms, swimming area to reception area, etc.
Here are some effective guidelines of enhancing your online visibility with effective use of distributing channels by hotel analysis specialist Hotel Analyst. It caters to the hotel investment industry and offers Hotel News Analysis Service.
18. Global Distribution Systems
GDS is known to cater to the global travel consortia like BCD, American Express, etc. This is a global network which travel agents prefer for their airline bookings, reservation transportations, hotel bookings etc. A GDS is an important platform as all these services are typically consolidated making it easier for travel agents to perform their tasks. Exposing your hotel business on this platform helps you to foster your relationship with agents and thereby enhancing the commercial demand of your hotel.
19. Online Travel Agents (OTA)
OTAs are the popular online travel agents like that of booking.com or hotels.com etc which offer direct access to customers to their options of hotels in a region. Building link that is enrolling into these distribution channels can enhance your traffic, bring your potential leads and bookings as well. Besides, these networks and distribution channels offer enhanced exposure.
The brimming competition in the sphere of hotel business has poseda definite challenge in front of hotel entrepreneurs to not only overcome the challenge of striving through the completion but also excelling over it. Therefore, to compete, thrive, survive the competition and surface above the competition with sheer expertise, you need a solid SEO marketing strategy to make your online visibility prominent since 83% of hotel searches begin from search engine, drive potential lead to your site or even to bag in definite range of bookings. And to successfully obtain all these you need to stand by some expert recommended SEO strategies.
Parker Cuskey an inbound marketing strategist reveals some expert tips on SEO marketing for hotels.
20. Targeting keywords wisely
Using keywords in a sensible way can drive your entire SEO campaign to great heights. You can start implementing basic keyword strategizing tips using your hotel name with location so that tourists can easily spot you.
21. Google Adwords
Taking your campaign to the next level with a keyword planning tool can bring in further success to your hotel business. Using Google Adwords will ensure that you can refine long tail keywords, since these keywords have great effect in driving more traffic to your business.
22. Keyword Mapping
This is the process of assigning definite and specific keywords to every page of your website. This may not have direct effect on your revenue returns but it definitely enhances better visibility, effective utilization and distribution of main keywords like long tail keywords, tertiary keywords etc.
23. Internal Link Structure
Internal link structure helps to enhance and improve the experiences of your visitors who can seamlessly gather essential information, navigate easily through internal links. Moreover, the lesser the impediments your visitors face while surfing your site, the more likely they are to return, and stay longer on your site.
24. Website Optimization
Optimize your hotel website by eliminating flash elements as it may slower the site speed or auto media players, etc. which can essentially slow down user’s experience. Taking initiative to enhance the site response, website speed can also improve your entire SEO campaign.
25. Tracking Performance
Just running a website is not enough, you need to analyze and track your performance as well, and for that Google offers free tools. Google Analytics and Search Console are free tools from Google, which help you analyze your site. You can track SEO campaigns, web traffic, solve malware issues etc.
Chris Romero, the founder of Romero Media Group a media production and marketing firm, offers his expert views on hotel marketing strategies
26. Social Media
Since social media has taken a front foot in the world of marketing, using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram to reach out to a broader market, prospective clients offer you to boost your visibility and drive potential traffic and get leads for your hotel.
27. Mobile App
Nowadays starting from tourism to medical benefits all is available on fingertips through mobile apps. Therefore, getting a mobile app for your hotel business can trigger your credibility. With more than 197 billion app downloads, the demand for apps is clearly evident.
Eimantas Balciunas is the founder of cryptocurrency and is an expert in SEO marketing strategies and offers marketing tips for hotel entrepreneurs.
28. Hotel Price Ads
HPAs help you to manage the display of your hotel price and location across desktops, mobiles, apps, laptops on Google map and Google. Since maximum search initiatives happen from Google and in case hotel searches Google maps play a vital role, managing the display of your hotel will improve your visibility over net.
29. PPC ads
Almost 148 million people take up internet for making their hotel and accommodation reservations, which accounts to more than 57% of all travel accommodation bookings. Since PPC enhances your visibility when you use Google Adwords for promoting your hotel through pay per click ads, it automatically improves your chances of conversion increases.
30. Use Google+ Page
An extensive range of hotel bookings are driven through social media, and Google+ being an integral part of Google, enhancing your hotel’s Google+ page can help you to drive better traffic. Moreover, according to records almost 50% of direct bookings of hotels in 2012 were initiated from social media.
31. Rich Snippets
Rich snippets are excessively helpful in defining your hotel’s label properly so that search engines can easily define what your site content is all about.
32. Business Listings
When you are looking forward to enhancing your hotel metrics then getting enlisted in popular business listings like Yelp, Trip Advisor or Google My Business can be effective.
Social Media nowadays play an integral part in defining and influencing the searches of travelers looking for accommodation options. It is a fact that almost 45% of travelers prefer checking the social media profiles of hotels in the beginning of their search, while the remaining 45 % prefer to go through social media profiles in the middle and the rest 11% at the end of their search. Moreover, Facebook which is an iconic social media platform alone has 1.7 active billion users who spend approximately 20 minutes on Facebook per day. Twitter has 310 million active users with 80% of them active through mobile. Therefore, you can understand how intricately social media is infused in our daily life, therefore taking social media seriously for marketing of your hotel is essential.
Webrezpro being a renowned web entity in marketing industry shares some of its top expert’s view son marketing strategies on social media.
33. Pay to Boost your Content
Major social media platforms nowadays offer custom targeting tool with which you can target relevant customers. Moreover, since 2017 there has been a potential and estimated growth of 26.3% globally on social media ad spending, experts are considering social media paid ads to be effective in terms of offering profitable ROI.
34. New Video Formats
New video formats like live video, 360 degree video are rapidly gaining extensive popularity over social media. Using video footages of your hotel, showcasing live video from tourists, or 360 degree video of your hotel property can offer you extensive popularity over social media.
35. Instagram Advantage
Within a year, there has been estimated growth of 600 million active users. Moreover, with the launch of Instagram Business profiles and tools, Instagram Stories, etc. have boosted the popularity and demand of Instagram. Moreover, with so many active users, you can reach out to your potential targeted customer.
36. Provoke User Generated Content
User generated content has specific popularity and demand. People tend to believe and consider user generated content to be more reliable. Therefore, you can encourage your customers to share their experiences in your hotel in pictures and share on your social media profile.
37. Customer Service with messaging Apps
Messaging apps like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, WeChat and Viber have more than 4 million active users. This digital communication method is cost effective and easy to implement. Besides you can also avoid vocal communication, instead customers can avail customer service through direct messaging, which is nowadays easier.
38. Social Media Booking
You need to implement direct booking scope from your social media profile so that customers do not need to navigate elsewhere, and in fact they can directly make bookings from Facebook. Implementing call to action buttons like Book now, Buy now, learn more are helpful to redirect users to booking page directly.
39. Micro Moments
Google’s Micro Moments offers users an insight into their interest; this means by effectively concentrating on what resonates with a tourist can help you to attract them further towards your business. Use Facebook and other platforms to offer travel tips, local hot spots, latest travel news, so that users find your posts effective and useful and visit your page as well.
PPC Marketing Strategies for Hotel
PPC is constantly undergoing innovation and is thus demanding hard core strategic focus on PPC marketing campaigns. For hotel business owners, PPC or Pay Per Click marketing can be potentially useful, since you can run high end ad campaigns, attract the eyeballs of millions and even drive Google to consider your business in ranking. The PPC marketing strategies discussed here by experts will sure prove useful for you.
Altitudelifestyle is a digital marketing firm that offers services to the hospitality industry. Here are some PPC campaign management tips from their team.
40. Voice Search
The global trend around the growing demand of voice search technology has accounted for 20% mobile queries using voice search and experts estimate that by 2020 almost 30% of the screen searches will be taken over by voice search. Since in voice searches the searches are more clarified even the search results are better optimized, therefore you need to trigger your PPC campaign even to promote voice searches.
41. Credit Varied Touch Points
The final click for booking is not the ultimate factor to consider while you determine your campaign strategy, since every journey plan includes a lot of research on travel blogs, forums, etc. Therefore, you need to specifically investigate the entire journey so as to find every scope of target market using all potential keywords and symmetrical set up your PPC campaign.
42. Keyword Selection
When using keywords for PPC marketing, you essentially need to pay heed to both long tail and head keywords. Moreover, there are many travelers who are confused about the destination, so while picking up keyword, concentrating on your target customer’s entire journey of picking up even the desired destination is also important.
Surfside PPC, is a PPC advertising agency that offers Pay-Per-Click Advertising, Affiliate Marketing, and Online Marketing training. Here are expert opinions and tips published on their website about PPC marketing for hotels.
43. Bing Ads and Google Adword
Though nowadays the importance of travel sites has increased extensively where people prefer to start their search for hotels, however, despite that Google and Bing searches occupy a vital role in the entire hotel searching process.
44. Google Hotel Ads
With the help of Google Hotel Ads especially you can showcase your hotel location on Google Map and your hotel will also be reflected for any relevant query. Take for example your hotel is in Atlanta, then getting listed in Google Hotel Ads will offer you the advantage of being listed on the top when people search for hotels in Atlanta.
45. Retargeting on Google Display, Facebook, Instagram
Retargeting is all about articulating the interest and attracting the attention of those who had already shown interest in your hotel, in your location for a visit. When you are launching retargeting PPC campaign, Google Display and Facebook is vital to focus on, since maximum searches revolve around these.
46. Video Retargeting
Instead of spending tons for running commercial ads which can be expensive, adhering to video retargeting on YouTube, facebook and Instagram for those who have earlier visited your site can be effective. Video offers customers to have a better look at your hotel, facilities, luxuries, etc.
47. Paid Facebook Ad
Facebook ads particularly offer you the advantage of targeting as well as retargeting those customers whose interest, behaviors or demographics match your business target. You can choose to select your preferences to filter target customers.
Traveltechstrategies offers some professional PPC marketing advices from their top professionals.
48. Local Search Ads
Focusing on local ads where people can search your hotel from their location, nearby staying option is quite useful for hotel business. Mobile searches have enhanced the importance of local searches and investing on PPC ads for local searches have become more meaningful.
49. Geo Targeting
Geo targeting is targeting those travelers who particularly show interest in your location. Therefore, by investing in Geo targeting PPC ads, you can prompt search engines to show your hotel ad particularly for location based searches.
50. Ad extensions
Using ad extensions offers you additional space in your PPC ads to write more textual messages. Therefore, you can convey more information about your hotel to travelers.
51. Win Back Brand Bids
In OTAs they generate automated PPC ads; therefore to take the first rankings on search listing, you need to back up your bid with additional and specific information about your hotel to lure potential customers.
To conclude, when you are in the hospitality business, particularly the hotel industry, local marketing and promotion is never enough; especially when you know your business relates to potential customers from varied geographical corners. You may have achieved excellence in services, best location, top management, qualified staff, but all in vein if you cannot promote these facilities, your presence and your specialty that is edge over your competitors. To overcome the specific challenges of competition, awareness among tourists, easy locating facilities, etc. you need a solid hotel marketing strategy, both online and offline.