Hospitality marketing is like selling tea from a fine boutique; every customer has different tastes and styles. Buzz words like “content marketing” and “marketing qualified leads” become the obsession of too many hotel marketers, and this generally leads to overthinking when it comes to marketing strategies and budgets. The best luxury hospitality marketing experts step away from this and put the focus back on what’s important–your guests. Here are three hospitality marketing tactics that can’t be missed in 2018 that cater to the bodies that fill your beds.
Hospitality Marketing, Chatbots, and Delighted Guests
The best AI-powered chatbots are created from the demand to offer a better customer experience and to increase management efficiency. When focusing on the luxury hospitality industry the best boutique hotels, upscale resorts, and private island getaways are scrambling in a very competitive space to offer the latest technology in customer service. Chatbots can play a vital role in creating a striking first appearance with your brand. They can also promote trust, and make internal operations more efficient.
Conversation marketing is a focal point to chatbot strategies. With the right strategy programmed to correspond with user queries, your guests can get humanized responses to detailed questions. From a potential guest asking about bedding alternatives to accommodate allergies, to wheelchair accessibility by the pool, and even to inquiries about local restaurants and activities in the area, chatbots can give helpful information to guests and even offer to book extras along with the room while giving a personalized sense of urgency all in the cadence of your brand.
If you have concerns that chatbots may cause your brand to look “inhuman”, put your fears to rest. The best chatbots can fool even the most intuitive humans into thinking they are talking to another person!
The Booking Experience and Your Homepage
Your website’s homepage is a prime part of the online booking experience. There are hundreds of surveys confirming that a significant number of guests found hotel homepages to be confusing and difficult to navigate. Luxury hotels need to employ a web design that has that trendy minimalist look and feel that is still hot shit, but it also needs to have a clear map for navigating to “accommodations”, “amenities” and a quick booking form. Being able to easily scroll is key, not just for millennials who want the quick and easy route, but to accommodate the more than 2 billion smartphone users in the world who expect nothing but the best mobile user experience. The home page should motivate people to book their room by showing them what they want to see–options and what the various room types look like.
As for placing social media buttons on your homepage, be careful. The last thing you want is for social media to distract guests and interrupt the booking process. Once they venture onto your Facebook page they may find a reason to do further research based on comments. You should also be mindful that competitor social targeting ads can populate and cause people to lose interest in booking your room.
Not Your Ordinary SEO
Look for an SEO agency that specializes in hospitality marketing. Again, all content must be personalized and designed to rank for personalized search queries. Rather than going for the basic keyword wins like “Hawaiian resorts”, rank for the search queries that people are actually making–detailed requests for solutions to unique needs. If you have a hotel on Maui right on the beach, then incorporate features and benefits your customers ask for into the keywords and your overall ranking strategy. These could include:
- Luxury modern hotel in Maui
- Luxury Maui hotel with spa
- Maui hotel resort with scuba diving
- Private luxury Maui hotel for singles
Rank for longtail keywords that reflect the experience your guests seek; optimize landing pages on your site that speak to these buyer personas and have a CTA that encourages them to book while the getting’s good.
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