29th September 2023
Marketing Hotels: Attracting Guests and Elevating Experiences
Marketing hotels effectively is a vital skill that can make all the difference in attracting guests and ensuring their stay is unforgettable. From boutique hotels to sprawling resorts, every property can benefit from a well-crafted marketing strategy. In this article, we’ll explore the key strategies and tactics for successful hotel marketing, helping you maximize occupancy rates and guest satisfaction.
You may think with online bookings, social media, and digital marketing dominating hospitality, the humble business card might appear outdated. However, for hotels seeking to create memorable guest experiences and build lasting relationships, business cards remain a powerful and indispensable marketing tool.
A well-designed business card adds a personal touch that digital interactions often lack. When a hotel staff member presents a business card, it establishes an immediate, real-world connection with the guest. It’s a tangible reminder that behind the online booking platform is a team of dedicated professionals ready to provide exceptional service.
First Impressions Matter. A business card serves as a mini-billboard for your hotel. It’s not just a piece of paper; it’s a representation of your brand’s identity and values. A thoughtfully designed card with your hotel’s logo, thoughtfully composed images, contact information, and a touch of elegance can leave a positive and lasting impression on guests. It conveys professionalism, attention to detail, and a commitment to guest satisfaction.
Networking and Referrals. In the hotel industry, networking is essential. Business cards facilitate connections with guests, travel agents, event planners, and local businesses. For instance, a guest who enjoyed their stay may refer your hotel to friends or colleagues using the business card they received during their visit. These referrals can be a valuable source of new business.
Local Recommendations. Hotels often serve as local guides for travellers seeking recommendations for restaurants, attractions, and services. By including information about nearby points of interest on your card, you can help guests explore the area, fostering a deeper connection to the destination and increasing the likelihood of return visits.
Promotions and Loyalty Programs. Business cards can be a medium for promoting special offers, discounts, and loyalty programs. For example, you can include a QR code or a unique discount code on the card that guests can use for their next booking. This incentivizes repeat visits and encourages guest loyalty.
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Hotel Key Cards
Hotel key cards can also serve as a valuable marketing tool when used strategically. Here are several ways in which key cards can be leveraged for marketing purposes.
Branding and Image Enhancement: Customise key cards with your hotel’s logo, branding, and a visually appealing design. The key card becomes a miniature billboard, reinforcing your brand’s identity every time guests use it.
Promotions and Special Offers: Print promotional messages or discount codes on key cards. For example, you can offer discounts at the hotel restaurant, spa, or gift shop, encouraging guests to explore and spend more during their stay.
Local Recommendations: Use the back of key cards to provide recommendations for local attractions, restaurants, and activities. This adds value to your guests’ experience and encourages them to explore the area.
Upsell Services: Promote upsell opportunities, such as room upgrades, late check-out options, or special packages, directly on the key card. This can entice guests to enhance their stay.
Loyalty Programs: Highlight your hotel’s loyalty program or rewards program on the key card. Encourage guests to sign up and earn points or benefits for their future stays.
Social Media Engagement: Include your social media handles or hashtags on the key card to encourage guests to follow and engage with your hotel on social platforms. User-generated content can help promote your brand.
QR Codes: Incorporate QR codes on key cards that lead to online surveys or feedback forms. Gather valuable insights and feedback from guests to improve your services.
Unique Designs: Change key card designs seasonally or for special occasions, creating a sense of exclusivity and collectability. Guests may want to keep different key cards as souvenirs.
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Your hotel’s website is the digital face of your property. It’s often the first interaction potential guests have with your brand. Therefore, investing in a visually appealing, user-friendly, and mobile-responsive website is paramount. Ensure your website includes:
- High-quality images and videos showcasing your property.
- Clear and enticing calls-to-action for booking.
- Detailed descriptions of room types, amenities, and services.
- An easy-to-navigate booking engine.
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- Optimizing your website for search engines is essential for improving its visibility in search results. Conduct keyword research to understand what potential guests are searching for. Create quality, informative content that includes these keywords and ensure your website’s technical aspects are SEO-friendly. Regularly updating your content can help maintain high search rankings.
If you’re not using social media for your hotel you are missing out. Social media platforms are great invaluable tools for hotel marketing. Maintain an active presence on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Share engaging visual content, respond to comments and messages promptly, and use targeted advertising to reach your ideal audience. User-generated content, such as guest photos and reviews, can also be a powerful marketing tool.
Email marketing allows you to nurture relationships with past, present, and potential guests. Collect email addresses through your website and guest check-ins, and then segment your email list to send personalised messages. Email campaigns can include special offers, updates on upcoming events, and personalised recommendations based on guest preferences.
Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) and Metasearch Engines
Partnering with OTAs like Booking.com, Expedia, and TripAdvisor can expand your reach to a global audience. However, it’s crucial to manage these partnerships carefully to avoid over-reliance on third-party platforms. Consider investing in metasearch advertising to drive direct bookings and reduce dependency on OTAs.
Create informative and engaging content related to your destination. Blog posts, travel guides, and videos can attract travellers looking for insights about your area. Share this content on your website, social media, and via email to position your hotel as a local expert and a valuable resource for potential guests.
Loyalty Programs and Repeat Guests
Encourage repeat business by offering loyalty programs and perks for returning guests. Special discounts, room upgrades, or exclusive access to events can incentivise guests to choose your hotel for their next visit. A loyal customer base can become your brand ambassadors.
Collaborate with travel influencers and bloggers to showcase your property to their followers. Influencers can provide authentic and engaging content that resonates with their audience, potentially bringing new guests to your hotel.
Effective hotel marketing is about a collection of tools creating an enticing online presence, engaging with potential guests, and providing memorable experiences. By investing in a well-rounded marketing strategy that includes creative business cards, stunning website, social media presence, SEO efforts, and email marketing, you can attract more guests, boost occupancy rates, and ultimately ensure that every guest leaves your property with a lasting impression. Remember, in the world of hospitality, a satisfied guest is your most powerful marketing asset. Promocards have many years of experience in design print, photography and copy helping hotels extend their message and customer reach.
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