You’re running a hotel, motel, or some other type of hospitality business. And you’re interested in learning more about the best marketing tools to help grow your business and make more money, right? You’ve come to the right place! Here you’ll discover the best marketing strategies and tactics for today’s hospitality business owner.

The Internet provides many opportunities to reach consumers. However, not all are created equal. If you are looking to reach consumers online, Hospitality Business brings you the best marketing tools for a hospitality business. Each of our top 5 picks is useful in its own right, but each also serves distinct purposes for your business. Each can help you better reach customers, whether by promoting your products or services or by making it easier to take online reservations.

Be Easily Searchable Online!

Let’s face it, technology has taken over. Long gone are the days of travel agents. Today’s travelers are empowered to do their own comparative research without even leaving their beds. So if your hotel isn’t easy to find online, no wonder your bookings are few and far between. You need to be EVERYWHERE relevant online for potential bookings so people can find you in the window when they need to book a place to stay.

Most travelers (75%!) start by using a search engine to find places to stay, so stay on top of your SEO. Use popular hotel keywords in your site copy, and make sure your site loads super fast.

Google Ads Mobile Benchmarks Average CPC

Travel companies have high CTR’s and low costs on mobile in particular

But don’t rely on organic optimization alone! The SERP (search engine results page) for hotel-related searches is heavily monetized, meaning people will see ads first. In the example screenshot below, the whole screen is taken up by ads. You need to be bidding aggressively on Google’s Search and Display Networks (don’t forget hotel ads!), Bing, social platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and websites like Trip Advisor and Kayak.

seo for hotels

Don’t limit yourself to just one social platform, search engine, or travel website. While it might not be necessary to have a strong presence on every website imaginable, you should dig into your website analytics, find out where people are typically booking from, and create an engaging and competitive presence on those platforms.

Remarket, Remarket, Remarket

Did you know that the abandonment rate for booking hotels online is 75%?! That’s right, a whopping three out of four people start the booking process, get distracted, and abandon their experience. Who knows whether it was the pizza man interrupting their purchase, or a suspicion that they might be able to find a better deal elsewhere. Whatever the reason may be, this does not mean you should give up as a hotel marketer.

Remarketing is a critical component for hotel marketing due to the fact that travelers are distracted not only by everyday distractions (like pop-up phone notifications and crying babies), but to the fact that there are hundreds of other options they can choose from.

expedia last minute ad

With remarketing, you can lower your abandonment rate and close more bookings by showing enticing display ads to people who recently visited your site, in order to remind them you’re there and lead them through the process. Try showing them a deal for a little extra incentive to book with you instead of your competitors, and make the booking process as easy as possible.

Configure remarketing campaigns through Google Ads and social platforms including Facebook ASAP!

Ensure You’re Targeting the Right Audience

What type of hotel are you marketing, and who is your typical guest? There needs to be a different strategy for marketers of a Super 8 Motel off Route 9 compared to the Ritz Carlton on the sandy beaches of the Caribbean shores. These people book differently, travel differently, and have different budgets. That’s why tools like income targeting will come in handy. While this might seem obvious, there are even further ways to break down your audiences when it comes to marketing your hotel.

Many hotels have a variety of customers of different income levels, since they may offer rooms on the more extravagant side (like the presidential suites) and other rooms that are often sold at discount prices. These two audiences need to be broken down and targeted separately. There is even a difference for the same hotel chain in different locations. All of these things are critical to consider when crafting your marketing campaigns.

If necessary, you may need to split your audiences into two, three, or even four separate campaigns to ensure you’re sending the right message to the right prospect. And of course with tools like Facebook’s targeting options this is not as complex as it once was. Just ensure you spend the time to define your audiences so you can craft the right message to the right person at the right time!

Take a look at this Facebook ad, for example – probably targeted at a savvy business traveler with a relatively high travel budget.

targeting strategies for hotel advertising

But if you work at a hip hotel in LA’s Koreatown, you might want to target a younger demographic of single people, for example.

 Social Listening Tools:

On social media in today’s world, everyone has a voice. So what are people saying about your brand on social media? Wouldn’t it be great to know when your audience mentions your hotel brand? Good news is, you can listen to those conversations with the help of social media listening tools. These tools allow you to monitor conversations through flagging certain keywords, hashtags, or brand mentions online.

What you do with these mentions are totally up to you. Ideally, if someone mentions your brand in a positive way (for example, through an Instagram post, commending your property on a fun stay), you could express your gratitude through a reply. Similarly, if someone had a negative experience and wrote a less than stellar review on their blog and tweeted the post to their followers, you can reach out via the comments or on social to offer to fix the issue. Social media listening tools will help you identify these conversations happening in the sea of content online. Some of our favorites tools are MentionHootsuite, and Tweetreach.

Analytical Tools: 

One tool in your marketing toolbox is your hotel website. To figure out how well this marketing tool is performing for you and your property, you can use Google Analytics. This free tool from our friends at Google empowers you with the digital analytics tools you need in order to figure out all the touchpoints your customers receives during their customer journey. Knowing how customers interact with your website can tell a qualitative story of how customers come and go into your ecosystem. If you’re creating content on your hotel website (for example, with a blog), Google Analytics also tells you how much traffic your posts are generating.

Google Analytics is an especially powerful tool when it comes to direct bookings. It tells you from which sites your visitors found your site, how long they stayed on your website, and even where they are located geographically. This is especially useful information to know if you’re using paid advertising. By knowing where your biggest audience is, you’ll know which geographic location you want to target your ads.

And since we’re on the topic of Google, a bonus tool to use (that is also free!) is Google Alerts. Set an alert for the frequency you’d like to be notified and on a keyword that you want (your hotel’s name is a great first step) and start getting notifications of when you’re mentioned on the web.

Survey Tools: 

Surveys are a great way to get honest and quick customer feedback and conduct market research. While you may not think of a survey tool as a hotel marketing tool, it can inform you as to what people want to see more of from your brand. What kind of hotel promotions do your customers want to see more of? What do they love about staying at your property? Figuring out these nuggets of information can inform what you show off more often in your hotel marketing.

Now that we’ve convinced you to give survey tools a test drive (hopefully!), we have some suggestions on tools to try. Companies such as TypeformGoogle Forms, or Survey Monkey are great tools to test out and see which ones you like the best.

Task Management Tools: 

Managing your upcoming marketing campaigns and work load is an important aspect of running any business. Good thing there are task management tools can make this a whole easier. Being able to organize, track, and prioritize your day to day, for yourself and your team, can be made easier with a few these tools. It’s especially handy when you’re planning out a new marketing campaign (for example, a seasonal hotel email marketing campaign or a user-generated content campaign).You can track each project milestone, add comments, attach important files, and see what other work is still left to be done in the project.

There’s a whole host of hotel marketing tools out there to help you stay on task and focused when it comes to marketing your property. And with so little time and so many marketing projects to take on, these tools are here to help you be smarter about how you market your hotel and best of all, save time in the process. TrelloAsana, and Flow are just a few of the options out there to help organize your working day.

Conclusion

Hospitality marketing is always changing and you need to make sure you are using the best marketing tools available.

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