When you run or own a hotel, you want it to be a popular destination for all vacationers and business travelers , known for its excellent customer service and top notch amenities. While your first thought might be to lower room rates to get more guests in the door, it is not a viable long term solution. It is not likely you will be able to book enough rooms to offset the lost revenue. There are other strategies that are better at creating demand and improving for brand awareness.
Here are 11 hotel marketing tips to increase bookings:
1. Offer special packages
By packaging rooms with other hotel services like fitness classes and beauty and spa treatments, not only are you making your hotel more appealing to potential customers, you are also encouraging the use of extra amenities that your guests might not have thought of taking advantage of otherwise.
2. Capitalize on your location
Location. Location. Location. Location is just as important to hotel management as it is to real estate. Hopefully when choosing the location for your hotel, you thought a lot about geography and what hot spots and attractions you would be close too. If you are near popular tourist attractions, cool shopping districts or entertainment hubs, then see if you can collaborate with them on some promotional work. Besides emphasizing these attractions on your website and print promotional materials, you can also use advertisements and editorials to emphasize how convenient it would be for guests interested in these attractions to stay with you during their visit.
3. Create mailing lists to stay in touch with former guests
Once a guest has stayed with you, you want them to continue to come back and make your hotel their preferred choice when staying nearby. One way to do that is to stay in touch with monthly emails where you keep them updated on upcoming special events, discounts and any improvements made to the facilities.
4. Grow your midday bookings
The weekends and holidays are usually easy to book because a lots of people are looking to get away for some rest and relaxation. Traditionally, however, midweek bookings tend to lag. If you are looking to increase your bookings overall, a boost to the number of hotel guests staying midweek can really help your numbers.
One way to do that is to offer special packages and discounts that can only be used midweek. A family might decide to stay on a Tuesday and a Wednesday instead of on the weekend if they know that they could save money. You can also create special events like conferences and poetry readings to draw bigger crowds during the week. Encourage local companies to rent out your open area spaces for their special events as well.
5. The way to the heart is through the stomach
While comfortable, clean, spacious rooms are the most important qualities of any hotel, hotel cuisine and drinks can also attract guests. Hotels known for great restaurants and a number of food and drink specials will often rate more overnight guests.
6. Develop a mobile app for your hotel
Even if you website is very mobile-friendly, it is still a smart choice to develop a mobile app. It can help you attract more direct bookings and keep customer loyalty. You can even offer special incentives like room selection and special discount packages for certain hotel amenities for guests who use the app.
7. Make it easier for your guests to extend their stay
While being booked to the gills might make you appear to be the most sought after hotel in the area, it also makes it more difficult for your valued customers to extend their stay when they are having a good time. If your guests know that they don’t have to jump through a lot of hoops to keep their room for a few more days, they will be more likely to take advantage of it. Make sure they know about the option when they first check in.
8. Have a strong internet presence
With smart technology, most people are constantly tuned into what is happening on the internet, especially social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. These are perfect ways to stay engaged with your guests by letting them know about the latest going-ons at your hotel and by answering any of their questions. You should always also direct potential guests to your website for more information. Make sure that the site is free of any grammar mistakes and that it is both aesthetically pleasing and easy to navigate. A blog attached to your website is another great way to provide your potential guests with helpful information and to keep them engaged.
9. Respond to customer review sites
Whether the reviews are positive or negative, it is important to show your guests that how they feel is important. If they had a bad experience, you should offer them some sort of discount or special package to encourage them to give your hotel another try. For those who leave positive reviews, thank them and mention new events or packages that are coming up. The best part is that everyone on that comment thread will see what you post as well, driving even more business.
10. Take Advantage of Technology to Use more Video and Live Feeds
We live in a tech savvy world so why not use people’s love of videos and live feed to get them excited about a stay at your hotel? Give visitors to your website and social media sites sneak peaks into special events that you hold at your hotel and the types of amenities you offer.
11. Add Virtual Reality Technology to Your Website
Virtual reality technology is the perfect way to give prospective guests an interactive tour of your hotel rooms and amenities. Hotel guests feel more comfortable trying out a new place when they get a good idea of what to expect beforehand.
All of these hotel marketing tips can help you boost the bookings at your hotel. For more strategies, consider hiring a hotel management consulting company like MBB Management. Call them today or visit their website.