As a marketing professional in the hotel industry, the primary objective is to ensure predictable occupancy rates. This article outlines various methods to achieve this goal through effective digital marketing strategies.
Promote periods of low occupancy
Every business experiences periods of both high and low turnover. Therefore, it is crucial to be aware of these fluctuations and take advantage of them. Understanding your target markets and their booking patterns is essential for effective hotel marketing. By segmenting newsletters and targeting guests at the ideal time, hotels can secure their place in potential guests' travel plans. On various social media platforms, using Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences are effective marketing strategies. These targeted groups closely resemble existing target groups and are more likely to become new customers through advertising efforts.
Attract more repeat customers with a targeted approach
Analysis shows that converting a satisfied guest into a returning one is easier and more cost-effective. There are several ways of doing this:
- Ongoing newsletter marketing
Sending ongoing newsletters to former guests can help keep your hotel top-of-mind when they are planning their next trip. By staying in touch with previous guests, your hotel will be more likely to be considered for their future travels, particularly if they had a positive experience with your hotel.
- Ongoing social media communication
Social media has become a primary source of information for travelers when making travel bookings. When a guest has had a positive experience with a hotel, they are likely to follow the hotel's social media accounts. Regular communication through these channels with enticing tips, interesting insights, and contributions from team members can help keep the hotel and their previous stay top-of-mind. This strategy increases the likelihood that the guest will return to the hotel for their next trip.
- Ongoing social media ads
Targeted and continuous advertising on social media can effectively reinforce a hotel's image to former guests. This strategy complements free social media communication and ensures that guests see the advantages of the hotel and the surrounding region in a targeted way. By continuously advertising to former guests through social media, hotels can promote their brand and attract repeat customers.
- Voucher marketing
Providing vouchers, such as for a second stay, can motivate guests to book again. Guests who have had a positive experience at a hotel are more likely to choose the same place for their next stay. Additionally, a voucher can also incentivize guests to extend their initial stay, perhaps to take advantage of an up-selling booking offer or to receive a discount on a future booking. Overall, generous distribution of vouchers can be an effective strategy to encourage repeat bookings and maintain guest loyalty.
- Loyalty programmes
Offering a loyalty program where guests can earn points and rewards can be a powerful tool for encouraging repeat bookings. It is essential to set up an attractive loyalty program and transparently explain to guests how they can benefit from it. This strategy can significantly increase the number of guests who return to the hotel for their next trip, as they are motivated by the prospect of earning loyalty points and rewards.
Longer booking lead times for greater occupancy certainty
Trough encouraging guests to book further in advance, hotels can better manage their capacity and reduce the risk of rooms being left unsold. This can help to increase occupancy rates and reduce the need for last-minute offers to fill empty rooms.
- Early booking newsletter
Targeted marketing at the right time can encourage early bookings, especially when early bookers are rewarded with favorable prices.
- Ongoing social media communication
Ongoing communication across social media channels encourages guests to book earlier. It creates a desire to travel and even provides a solution.
- Early occupancy drives dynamic pricing
Encouraging early bookings can be beneficial for hotels, as it is much easier to implement dynamic price increases when occupancy is high.
Last Minute Offers
Selling last-minute rooms can be a challenge for hotels, and it is important to communicate short-term availability and market it effectively to potential repeat guests as well as new customers. Newsletters and social media channels are both great ways to do this. By using targeted social media advertising and ongoing communication through the hotel's own channels, hotels can reach potential guests and offer them significantly lower prices as an attractive incentive to book. With the right marketing strategies in place, hotels can successfully sell their remaining rooms.
Upselling to increase turnover
Upselling is an effective sales strategy that can significantly boost revenue for hotels. There are two key times when upselling can be particularly beneficial:
- Upselling before the stay
Once the guest has already chosen the hotel, the goal is to increase the value of their booking. This can be achieved, for example, by emailing an offer for a paid (but perhaps discounted) upgrade to a higher room category or treatments in the spa area to enhance the guest's experience. This not only increases the guest's anticipation but also the hotel's revenue, and it improves the predictability of occupancy in this area.
- Upselling on site
As soon as guests arrive at the hotel, they get into the holiday mood and are often in the mood to spend money. Hotel staff should take advantage of this and promote the hotel's spa services or events. By doing so, they contribute directly to the guest's leisure activities and create an even more positive experience for the guest.
Hotel marketing automation software like ADDITIVE+ MARKETING AUTOMATION provides hotels to automate their marketing activities. It enables hotel marketers to target past and future guests with personalized messages at the right time, through the right channels.