The modern world of Marketing calls for more and more effort from Hotels, with enhancements in technology, analytics, and diversity of platforms increasing the necessity of Online Marketing for all Hotels.
Below are the key areas every Hotel should be utilising to not only keep up with the competitive standards, but to outperform them and see more traffic driven to their OTA or directly to their site.
There’s a reason Google practically own the internet – they can provide value for their customers. One of the most influential ways they do that is using their effective advertising tool Google Ads. Similar to Facebook ads only in a wider perspective, Google Ads allows you to target people via demographics, geographies, interests, search behaviour and more.
All hotels who take their online marketing seriously will be continually using Google Ads to drive traffic to their site or OTA. Just think of the potential: how many people each day will search (for example) “Hotels in London” into Google? If Google Ads ensure you rank top of this search topic, then your ROI will be recovered by the time anybody utters the word Expedia.
A less-targeted but similarly necessary way to promote your Hotel online is using advertisements in trade publications, lifestyle, business or travel magazines.
Do you have a local convention in your town every year? Pull out an advert in their magazine/emails they send to their attendees, and you’re likely to see some reservations as a result. Further, if your hotel has business facilities to sell, look no further than advertising in local business-focused publications. These advertisements often cover physical and online formats, and can often be cost-effective.
Social Media marketing for Hotels could take up an entire blog, or even book, to discuss fully. But we’ll do our best here. All Hotels looking to fully utilise the extensive benefits of social media should have an account on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. The core of successful social media is amazing content, regularly. But on top of that, social media influencers, paid campaigns, and contests should be used to give your social media an extra edge. Hotels using social media are still in relevant infancy, but it’s an upcoming space where you still have an opportunity to gain serious competitive (and lucrative) advantage.
SEO, or search engine optimisation, is the changes you can make to your site and your business to ensure it ranks higher in an online search. For example, if you search “Hotels in Manchester” into Google, there are (at the time of writing) 34,900,000 results. This means getting your website at the top, or even on the first page, requires some work. SEO experts will get your website ranked highly whenever certain keywords are used. For hotels, this is a massive advantage to overcome competition, but it requires a lot of knowledge, or a significant investment.
PPC, or pay-per-click advertising, is an effective form of online marketing due to the low-risk nature of it – with PPC, you won’t waste your money on unwanted traffic – but only relevant and useful traffic. Add a PPC campaign to your Google Ads, Online Ads, Social Media and SEO investments for the perfect online marketing campaign for hotels.
Less-essential than the others, but still important in driving keyword traffic to your site, blogs are a great way to add an extension to your brand. For example: Secret Hotel Critic. We started a blog for three main reasons; firstly, to help our SEO ranking; secondly to convey our expertise, knowledge and opinions, and thirdly to provide content for our social media and other marketing streams. Blogs don’t need to be very long, don’t need to take up much time and don’t need to cost much.
The key advantages of investing time and money into online marketing are that Hotels can choose where traffic is driven to, competitive advantage can be achieved, you can extend your brand, and simply increase reservation numbers.
With most bookings coming from online, fail to use the above methods and not only will less potential customers discover your Hotel, but those that do will be driven directly to an OTA or competitor.
At Secret Hotel Critic, we have established specialist Social Media Marketing partners in order to provide our customers with a discounted service which is essential to an effective online presence. If you’d like an introduction, please email our team here.
Secret Hotel Critic is intense mystery shopping for Hotels. We check in anonymously, critique every nook and cranny of your hotel, before reporting back with an extensive insight into your hotel from an honest guest’s opinion. We also provide extra suggestions for ways to increase revenue streams and improve guest experience. Click here to learn more or to book your Secret Hotel Critic.