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How to avoid marketing errors in the hotel industry.
Running a hotel is not easy and "with your nose in your handlebars", you can let things go by and not notice the mistakes you've made.
Taking advantage of this complicated beginning of the year, let's take stock and think about the errors in marketing strategy and especially how to correct them in order to adopt an optimal marketing strategy.
Don't consider that you yourself are the customers of your establishment... This could be the first marketing mistake.
In other words, travel professionals who know all the right tricks to book at the best price and under the best conditions.
Take the time to analyse the typology of your customers, the way they book (direct, indirect, booking window, duration, ...) and try to identify typical profiles, with typical behaviours.
Votre « CRM » ( Customer Relationship Management ) si vous en avez un, les données issues de votre PMS ( Property Management System), ou encore l’analyse des données Google Aalytics peuvent être riches d’enseignement pour ce faire.
If necessary, call on agencies specialized in the hotel industry such as Optimize 360 to help you decipher the typical profile of your customers, which will allow you to adjust the priority languages of your site, the packaged offers, and the points of differentiation to differentiate you from your OTA partners' standardized "files" (Booking, Expedia ...).
Most hotels put their efforts into this. And they're right.
Indeed, just as OTAs will invest millions in "mass" advertising campaigns, just as much as they will attack your hotel brand, they cannot afford to be on sale at a loss.
By defending your brand against them and ensuring that the acquisition cost remains lower than their own commission, it is very relevant to defend your brand.
This tactic has to be very finely tuned, as the difference in tariff vs. OTA must be taken into account in order to already try to be more attractively priced than they are.
Therefore, as long as the equation ( Advertising Cost + Tariff Drop-Out remains true, you earn money vs.
During the search for destination ideas, content marketing is an interesting opportunity to capture the attention and inspire travellers who are not yet ready to book.
This is one of the services offered by Optimize 360.
Unfortunately, many hoteliers do not take care of this, leaving the field open to the OTAs who invest in this area.
Just look at the regular updates of Booking for example, where hotels can indicate on their page which restaurants, cafes/ bars, grocery stores/supermarkets and "places of interest" are close to your hotel.
Expedia is not to be outdone either by offering establishments to set up 10 "points of interest" arguing that you know what your customers want. In addition, you can add photos (which you will not forget to tag with your establishment's name).
Why not use this material to feed the pages of your website?
And to do it, moreover, in a clever way...
Example: Doing an article on Fashion Week will have almost no chance of coming up against online magazines or press articles from "big doers".
On the other hand, "finding a hotel for Fashion Week", as a long tail item will potentially correspond to real internet user requests and will be less in direct competition vs. strong competitive positions
Over the years you have built up a substantial e-mail address book of one-off or regular customers, French or foreign.
Don't spoil this unique material by sending your entire notebook indiscriminately a promotional offer for periods you need to fill in.
Future messages could get caught in spam and your correspondents could end up eliminating your establishment from their own address book.
Not all your clients have the same reasons for staying or the same availability.
It is not enough to have an email address, you must also qualify each one of them precisely in order to address each one of them in the most personalized way possible.
In other words, at the right time and with the right proposal.
Regularly provide your customer base with recent, accurate information: date of birth, nationality, of course, because your customers all present their ID on arrival, date of marriage, children or not, as a couple, traveling with friends, visiting a trade show, etc...
From this information, you will be able to send targeted and personalized messages that can have an impact on their recipient who will feel concerned, without annoying others.
Use and be helped by CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software such as Experience Hotel for example to automate some of the tasks on the basis of an already pre-sorted and qualified database as soon as you receive your information from the OTAs or directly via your Booking engine and PMS (Property Management System).
Analyze your marketing strategy, and analyze possible past marketing mistakes
If your only marketing action is to work on your rates by offering discounts on a regular basis, you will always find someone to be cheaper than you.
You thus degrade your average price at the risk of devaluing your product and damaging your image in the long term.
Instead, think about enriched and original offers that intrigue Internet users and make them want to book.
In this way, you offer a more "fun", different image and make your customers want to come back to you.
Marketing strategies must be medium to long term and not evolve every 4 mornings (or exceptional economic phenomena).
Marketing actions that are too often corrected, amended or even abandoned produce nothing.
Of course, they will have to be if the return on investment is not convincing, but we must allow ourselves time to measure the inflection.
A marketing strategy must be the object of constant and regular work throughout the year.
Too many hoteliers only worry about their marketing from time to time.
Once 2 or 3 marketing operations have been set up, they stop and do not continue their efforts.
However, the hotels' website and communication have to be constantly adjusted and tested in order to make the most of the actions launched. But with sufficient time and hindsight.
This is exactly why OTA and AirBnB are still growing and evolving over the long term. It's up to you to do the same at your level and with your means.
Indeed, a well thought-out and regularly adjusted marketing strategy can have a considerable impact on your hotel's results.
If you make sure you follow these 5 recommendations and regularly analyse the results of your actions, you will see an increase in traffic on your website and direct bookings.
At Optimize 360, we are here to listen to you if you need advice and to validate your action plan.