How Hotels Can Integrate Online and Offline Marketing Techniques
As the world becomes more digital-dependent, a hotel needs to be able to create a marketing plan that incorporates both on and offline techniques to attract the largest amount of customers as possible. As a hotel owner, you need to advertise your business using marketing strategies that appeal to guests of various backgrounds, but if your hotel is unique and catered to a particular, crowd, advertising can help you reach the type of people your establishment was built for.
Online vs. Offline: What’s the Big Difference?
If you’d have asked this question 20 years ago, the answer wouldn’t have needed to be stressed, but in 2015, striking a balance between successful online and offline marketing is integral to attracting new customers and achieving business goals. Online advertising, better known today as digital marketing, is an invaluable tool for the modern business owner.
The web connects millions upon millions of people, many of whom are searching for exactly what you have to offer. You just have to find a way to reach them. Digital marketing campaigns will help you do just that.
Offline marketing includes things like a fence sign, outdoor metal signs, and billboards; anything that establishes your presence and is recognizable to locals or tourists passing through. You’d be surprised how many people wind up in need of a hotel while on vacation, and having a sign and advertisements offline that catch their eye when they least expect are great ways to become known.
Online Hotel Marketing Strategies Examples
First and foremost, hiring a professional graphic designer and web developer to create a site for your hotel is key. A good hotel website is optimized for accessibility, features plenty of true-to-life and updated images present all of your hotel’s amenities and features in an enticing but easy-to-follow way, and provides a means for potential guests to get in contact with you or even reserve a room right from the web page.
A good web team will help you unitize top marketing techniques like search engine optimization (SEO) to generate as much traffic as possible for your site.
You can also pay for advertisements on the web results pages most relevant to the ones potential guests would search, for example, “Affordable Hotels in Austin” or “Good Hotels in San Diego”. This technique is known as PPC or pay-per-click marketing.
Online travel booking sites are also heavily used, so getting your hotel listed on one of the most well-trusted online booking sites like booking.com, TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Airbnb will help boost your recognition and ability to be found immensely.
Offline Hotel Marketing Strategies Examples
Traditional marketing still plays a large role in today’s society, though because people have become desensitized to fliers and typical signs, it’s important to make sure you work with a company that can help create a hotel advertising campaign that is noticeable and memorable.
People remember strong images and short but catchy slogans. Many businesses still have their number something people can easily recall off the top of their head, such as 1-800-Rent-a-Car. Doing this type of practice only with your hotel’s name or a form of it will put you at the forefront of customers’ minds the next time they need a place to stay or have friends coming into town.
Make sure your building is also easily identifiable from the exterior. Door plates, outdoor metal signs, and fence signs matter but landscaping and upkeep are also vital. The external appearance of your hotel is the first guests will notice whether it’s in person or via Google Maps, which means your building’s appearance is an offline marketing tool in and of itself.
The Hotel Marketing Mix
The marketing mix between online and offline hotel advertising is a recipe that requires several ingredients to be successful.
- Understanding of the Market
- Realistic and Achievable Business Goals
- Recognizable Brand
Understanding the market means you know who your top competitors are, whether you’re part of a chain or running your Bed & Breakfast. Learning the typical figures of your competitors and what guests in your area seem to value the most will help you adjust your own business to fit those needs and stand out.
Business goals must be easily identifiable and realistic to work. There’s a difference between business dreams and business goals. The former are what motivate you to get up in the morning and remind you why you got involved in this industry in the first place. The latter is what you refer to on a day-to-day basis and use as a compass to keep your hotel running and generate a good profit.
Last but not least, marketing is all about branding. For hotels, this means having a name that’s easy to remember, an environment that guests feel drawn to and comfortable in from the second they walk through the door and connections with a branding and advertising company that can see your hotel through the eyes that you do and help create a public image people will love.
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