A Complete Guide to Marketing Strategy Plan For A Hotel

4 years ago

Hotel marketing encompasses a huge array of topics, skills, and strategies that hoteliers like you need to be aware of – and also master – if you want to succeed in optimising the success of your hotel business and attracting as many travellers as possible.

Effective hotel marketing means potential guests and customers alike will be impacted by your brand wherever and however they choose to research, plan, and book their trip.

Now, you could certainly and understandably choose to only write content relevant to your hotelier audience. However, we’d recommend seeking to inform and inspire hoteliers across the board as well if you expect to build up quality, long-term hotelier and hotel reader relationships (on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and so on).

At the end of the day, every hotel business has to compete for the same hotel guest dollar, so it pays for you to try and grab as much of a share of that dollar as you can.

So, let’s now take a look at the power of hotel marketing.

Top 10 Hotel Marketing Strategies

Customers Trust Reviews

Your customers trust reviews.

Your customers care about reviews.

They trust hotel forums and travel blogs. And they trust them to provide honest, unbiased advice on your hotel.

As such, you can use hotel reviews to influence your hotel guests to book at your hotel.

So, let’s dig into the power of hotel reviews and how you can create hotel reviews on your hotel.

Your Hotel Guests Need to Communicate with Each Other

Customers at your hotel will always be connected online to their travel partners – and what you want is for your hotel guests to communicate with your guests so you can sell more rooms, exclusive hotel club access, and more.

To really take advantage of this, you need to be a successful social traveller yourself.

To do this, you should get your own identity on FB and Twitter. Then, you should engage with others socially, as in:

  • Create an account.
  • Follow others.
  • Follow them again.
  • Post to share travel tips and destination recommendations.
  • Post to promote your hotel.
  • Post to comment on others’ posts. (The hotelier’s angle on destination recommendations look for and provide value)
  • Comment on others’ photos.
  • Post location, date and time, and a photo of a venue. (Know that guests are seeing the same posts as you use an in-house dashboard and analytics)
  • Invite others to tag along on a trip – with your hotel featured as the place to stay.
  • In addition to building your social media profile from scratch, you should also get your social presence sponsored by a hotel marketing agency.

Social media strategies work miracles for any hotelier. With a well planned and executed social media strategy, you can achieve great results such as:

  • Develop and increase trust with pre-booking.
  • Drive traffic to online campaigns or events.
  • Reach out to new customers through social networks.

Your Hotel Customers Are Influencers

Customers of your hotel are the most common of influencers.

When you want your guests to communicate with each other, and for pre-booking to increase, you need to get all the right people talking about your hotel.

This means you need to be a pre-booking influencer, who are active on every social media platform that

your target market frequents.

It also means you get your own branded content out there, share relevant photos, and generate lots of active locals or forum threads (for the hotel bookings to be read).

Also, you don’t necessarily want to be the most influential hotel. You want to be the second most influential hotel (followed by the first-place hotel. And so on).

What’s the difference between a first place hotel and a second place hotel?

Simple. The first place is the one that has the best marketing. It has the most relevant social media profiles, content, and high-quality reviews.

You want social media to be relevant to your guests (and also your competitors), not just your hotel.

But also, you want to be the best at your best goal (more room bookings). This means getting on the first page of Google for relevant search terms.

Because visitors are searching based on these terms, you can use them to get “pre-booked” guests to get to your hotel.

As an influencer, your contact page should be your website. And if you do pre-booking right, you could have your hotel’s information in places all over the world that your customers are looking for it.

However, you must remember that your site will not rank well on Google if you’re sending people to a site that doesn’t trust your hotel or your brand.

But also, Use the tools that digital marketing agencies have at their disposal:

  • SEO
  • SEM
  • Outreach

Social Media Management.

ust be sure that everyone knows your website domain (don’t use Google place for the hotel).

Your hotel marketing agency can also help you get more hotel brand awareness on the web by promoting it via:

  • Content marketing
  • SEO
  • Social Media Management

And even via ads on all of your competitors’ websites so you can get your hotel out there, draw visitors in, re-invigorate them, and then get them to stay with you.

But also, don’t get too caught up in thinking your hotel is where all your online marketing activity is going to be focused. Remember that online marketing is just one part of what you need to do as an effective hotelier.

For example, you should be aiming to have the following activities on Facebook:

  • Live blogs
  • Bumpers
  • Photos
  • Sharing and commenting.

Simply put, bringing your hotel to life on social media platforms is an important component of your hotel marketing strategy, and one that you should strive to have at the heart of everything you do on social media.

Monitor and Analyse your Social Media

Monitor and analyse your social media marketing activities carefully.

Track the numbers.

Know which channels are bringing people to your site.

And how engagement is going on each one.

Then, determine what you can do to maximise the amount of engagement on each of the marketing channels.

Monitor the following:

  • All of the above tactics
  • Reach – where are they landing?
  • Time on site – how long have they stayed?
  • Questions asked – did they ask about the availability of your hotel? Did they ask about weekly rates? Did they ask about special offers?
  • Reactions – enjoy the chat. Did they become obsessed with booking your hotel after one day?

Engagement – use tools such as Squarespace or Hootsuite to track conversation on each social media channel.

Responses – ask about response on Facebook itself. Ask about online reviews on TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Google.

Those are the different things you can do to monitor the success of your hotel marketing strategy. There are multiple metrics and techniques.

Now, your social media monitoring should mirror gaps and improvements in your hotel’s marketing.

This is great, of course, but it also means you need to be quick to react to changes on the web.

For example, let’s say that a major hotel chain deleted all of their content from social media.

It would be a big deal for you, obviously. Even if you don’t have any social booking in your hotel, you used to know about them.

If you don’t know about the change – then maybe you need to check out what other hotels are doing and see if you can follow their lead.

Also, you need to consider the fact that people will still notice your hotel even if you don’t have all of your content there.

And, they will still use social media to find your hotel. So, you just want to be there too.

But you can’t get there all of a sudden – you need to have your hotel information out there for a while. Start by getting your hotel brand out there right now, just in case you need to react quickly later on when social changes.

Your Hotel Needs a Website

Let’s face it.

Your hotel website needs to be simple, easy to navigate, full of content, and focussed on the hotel bookings, which is at the heart of your marketing strategy.

That’s why your website needs to be tested and approved by your team before you launch. It also needs to have an email capture form on it so you can start connecting with those who book with your hotel.

This is a really good time to use analytics to see how people interact with your site.

And, the best way to get people to your site is to get them to sign up with their email addresses. So, the first thing you should do after starting to use social media for your hotel is to get more people to your website.

Get as many people as possible signed up and talking to your brand.

Use marketing automation to make sure that these people are getting the correct content.

Be sure to get in touch with these people via email and follow up with them on what they’re interested in – this too will keep you in their minds and on their minds.

When you leave a comment to these people, thank them and ask them to book with your hotel. Then, contact them again to keep them on the mailing list.

But also, you should include a link to your email capture form so that guests can opt-in to get the latest news and updates straight to their inbox.

Once they opt-in, write them thank you messages for booking with you. (If you’re not doing this, it means that you haven’t realised that people are starting to talk about you online through social media, and have just forgotten to thank them.)

Don’t forget, you should make it easy for people to booking with your hotel.

do’s and donts’ of Marketing Strategy Plan For A Hotel

1.The beginning of your hotel marketing strategy needs to be focused on building trust and credibility.

This is what should happen during your hotel marketing research. Don’t just start thinking about marketing when you’ve come up with your ideas.

Start with the research you’ve done.

Start with your existing customer base to see what they expect. They should also have a say when your marketing materials are created and used.

2.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be developed around a clear goal.

If you don’t have one, then you’ll never get to the end of it. Give yourself a goal and stick with it.

3.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on the basics.

You can’t mix forms of marketing and then expect to get the best results.

You have one type of marketing – and one type of marketing.

Don’t use a marketing strategy that uses all of these tactics. Remember, if you want to be successful, you have to focus on one form of marketing.

4.Your hotel marketing strategy needs videos to be part of it.

It always helps to show what your hotel is like and how it can serve different groups of people. This gives a chance for your marketing material to become more personal.

5.You need to make content for all of your marketing channels part of your hotel marketing strategy.

No marketing channel is more important than any other to get your hotel noticed on the web.

It’s the digital marketer in you that likes everything to be equal.

But remember, every marketing channel is different.

You try to do this by combining which channel and what content you have.

6.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on bringing the hotel to life.

Always. People are searching for hotel content and not just content for your hotel. It’s important to incorporate this into the strategy.

7.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on attracting people to your brand.

If you don’t do this, then your hotel isn’t going to have a lot of influence in people’s lives. This needs to be part of your decisions.

For example, if you have a Facebook page about your hotel, then join the Facebook groups.

If you join in and start talking to other people in the groups, then you may be able to increase your awareness on the platform.

If you’re really interested in getting your hotel in front from the biggest marketplace now, then you need to join the Facebook Groups. Connect with the people that are your customers.

8.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to focus on building a brand.

Think about how the hotel will go from being a concept – to a reality.

9.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to involve different forms of marketing.

Make sure that the hotel is linked to all of the websites that serve your target market.

10.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to incorporate multiple form of social media.

Similar to the different forms of marketing, the hotels needs to be integrated with social media.

Don’t think that this forms and marketing are separate, they are meant to fit together.

11.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be part of the hotels’ overall marketing strategy.

Don’t just think about how the hotel affects the marketing strategy. It’s part of a whole.

12.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on the strengths of the hotel.

The key to building trust is to develop the strengths of the hotel so that it can use them in marketing.

13.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be part of the hotels’ overall marketing strategy.

Don’t just think about how the hotel affects the marketing strategy. It’s part of a whole.

14.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on the strengths of the hotel.

The key to building trust is to develop the strengths of the hotel so that it can use them in marketing.

15.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to focus on a unique touch.

If you are going to stand out on the world wide web, you need to do something different.

The need to be unique and well known in your market is paramount.

16.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to use your buzz words.

For example, you can use youtube.com/channels/hotelgossip as well as hotelgossip – just be creative.

17.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to reflect the location of the hotel.

You should make sure that your location is reflected.

If you’re from the US you shouldn’t talk about how to travel to Europe when you’re not in Europe. You should emphasise how you can travel to Europe.

But no matter if you’re in the US or in the UK, you need to be using the same language.

18.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to understand who your target market is.

If you don’t do this, then your hotel is not going to do well.

19.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on promotion.

20.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on promotion.

21.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on artificial intelligence.

Your hotel needs to have a strategy to acquire and interact with people.

22.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on real-time messaging.

You shouldn’t be hung up over rich media.

For example, if you have only one channel to send out a message and it’s a landing page, then you should make sure that your hotel is sending as many messages as it can when it’s likely that someone will be looking at it.

For example, if it’s 20 minutes before someone is going to check in at your hotel, then it’s the perfect time to tell people about exciting things that are going on at the hotel.

Such as, a new eatery has opened, the hotel has just been nominated for a prestigious award that it won – you name it.

You could also send out messages to all of the people who checked in from different countries. By sending out this type of messages, you get people’s attention who may not have read all of the content that your hotel has put out.

23.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on language.

Language is a description of how people speak.

Perhaps a phrase like – each guest that stays at the hotel gets free hotel Wi-Fi on request.

24.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on personalisation& choice.

We like to provide choice and the fact that we can tailor a message to the specific needs of our customers.

25.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on the different time zones.

If you are living in the UK, then you shouldn’t be promoting your hotel in the USA. Why?

Because you want people to travel to your hotel, not London, England.

But if your hotel is in Manhattan, New York, then you can send messages to people that are in New York, but it wouldn’t be detrimental to your hotel to start doing it.

26.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on data.

If you’re not using data then you need to.

Some examples of things you can do with data:

  • Why some people select a certain date to visit a hotel
  • How to use different channels to talk to more customers
  • How to sign people up to emails by using a creative way
  • How to ask someone for their email address in order to increase the likelihood of getting them to sign up for e-mails
  • What can we do to improve retention after someone signs up to our website
  • What can we do to make the first room someone stays in the hotel into a better room?

27.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on hotel marketing research.

You need to research your market in order to know how to get the best results. The best way is to consult with experts and other hotels.

28.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on industry papers and journals.

The best way to understand how to market your hotel is for you to be involved in marketing research, readings and industry journals.

29.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on personality.

You need to know the person that is the chief marketing officer at the hotel.

30.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on content.

You need to create good content so that you can get the traffic coming into, and getting people to sign up for the emails, and would you keep doing it.

31.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to be based on SEO.

You need to get your hotel in the SERPs in order to bring more customers to your hotel.

32.Your hotel marketing strategy needs to compare CTAs.

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