Wanderlust is a word that almost everyone uses as an Instagram caption regularly. The blurring of the international divide via the internet brings the spirit of adventure in all of us. A lot of people want to travel and explore new destinations nowadays, and there is no shortage of hotels, be it an Airbnb or a Hilton, to make your temporary home.
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The challenge of owning and marketing a hotel is overwhelming competition and alternates to traditional hotels (like HomeAway). How then, do you make your hotel stand out? How will you make sure that people look at your hotel and get excited to book a stay with you?
Well, here’s our ten essential tips for hoteliers to increase hotel bookings guaranteed to help you pack a full house.
Effective Marketing Tips for Hoteliers to Increase Hotel Bookings
Easy to Find Online
With the dawn of easy Wi-Fi access, almost no one does anything in person. Therefore, an engaging website that follows Search Engine Optimisation basics is essential to increasing hotel bookings.
Make sure that the website is easily found by your guests by using rich and relevant content, strong keywords and keyword combinations to help make your website more visible. Your website needs to be user-friendly with self-service links no more than a click away.
Stand Out From The Crowd
You need to own your narrative, decide what you want people talking about when they talk about your hotel. Your hotel needs to be unique, innovative and fresh in its approach towards guests.
It should be able to offer guests something that your competitors cannot. For example, you could leave a personalized note or a unique gift hamper for every guest that checks in!
It’s More Than A Hotel
Chances are, not all vacationers are decisive about their destination. So, while marketing your hotel, it is important to also market your location. Such as:
- Creating packages that put together local activities or events to immerse outsiders in
- Partnering with as many local organizations as possible to make your presence felt in the local community
Making a list of recommendations to help guests get the best and most authentic local experience, the list is exhaustive and you can do trial and error to see what works for you.
Guests As Marketers
Take complete advantage of the selfie culture and have your customers market your hotel for you. For example, hosting a selfie contest to see which of your guests can take the most interesting selfies while accessing the hotel amenities, or participating in events.
This would help market the hotel to their friends and family, and the fun pictures make it an engaging and desirable place and that is an amazing way to help increase hotel bookings.
Maintain a good relationship with the local travel agencies and the tourism office. Ensure that you’re on their recommended lists. Network with local businesses and attractions and build partnerships to co-promote each other.
Create package deals with them to ensure that if your guests know of either one of these businesses, they know all of you. If in case a travel writer, a blogger, or an influencer is staying at your hotel, offer them complimentary stay or incentives that would make them enjoy their stay enough to give positive publicity.
Customer Is King
As a hotelier, great service is the key to success. Marketing and customer service are pillars in the hospitality industry – two sides of the same coin. Schedule your staff shifts in a way that there is never any shortage of staff.
It is important to provide the best service to your guests before, during and even after their stay. Something as simple as a thank you note at check-out could go a long way.
Having a strong social media presence is extremely important to increase hotel bookings. Fresh and consistently posted content attracts potential guests. Constantly interact with your guests and engage them with posts that mention your hotel.
Maintain accounts in leading social media channels and don’t be shy to use them. Encourage your guests to tag you in posts or provide you a review with a hashtag.
Flaunt Your Reviews
With the availability of information quite literally at our fingertips, customers usually look at the reviews for a hotel before booking. Post some of the reviews or testimonials given by those who’ve already been at your hotel on your official website.
Take some of the better and more personalized reviews to display on your website. You can pull them from review sites like TripAdvisor and Make My Trip. You can share the same on your social media accounts as well.
Create a virtual tour of your hotel and provide a link for it on your website. Creating a virtual tour will show customers exactly what is available at your hotel. Potential guests can take a tour of your hotel online, giving them an idea of what to expect.
Transparency of booking and helping guests familiarise themselves with the hotel and getting them excited about staying can increase hotel bookings tremendously!
Launch a loyalty program within your hotel bookings which allows customers to gain points every time they book your hotel to stay at.
Use referral codes to give them points when members of their family or friends stay at your hotel upon their recommendation. These points could be used in several different ways like discounts on repeat bookings!
Hotel Marketing uses all these tools and tactics from customer incentives to reviews and loyalty points, running ads, being active on social media, and even hosting various events and conferences.
If done right, your hotel will surely see an increase in hotel bookings and many return guests! So, what are you waiting for? Let the tourists know you’re a home away from home that they’ve been searching for!
Himanshu Singh is a Marketing Specialist at SoftwareSuggest, He is well versed in software platforms like eCommerce, project management, document management. He is also interested in domains like Machine Learning and Semiconductors. In his spare time, he enjoys Guitar, Badminton, and Photography.