With the summer season fast approaching, many people are gearing up to make their yearly summer vacations to far away places. This post is aimed at helping your hotel capitalize on the influx of travel during the summer months. (Note: the strategies outlined below can be useful for any business, they were just written with hotels in mind.)
As any working person will tell you, the two major barriers to travel are expense and time. Your email campaigns should be geared at eliminating these barriers so that your hotel is the one chosen when a potential customer decides to get away. If you master the art of building and maintaining relationships with your subscriber base, email marketing is a cost effective tool and will help drive revenue. Here are several quick tips for managing and benefiting from the relationship you can build with subscribers:
Build your list – We have written before about building your list, and to reiterate its importance: the first step in carrying out any campaign is to have a quality email list. Ask people for their email address when they make a reservation or at the front desk. During this stage, it’s important to set expectations so that they realize what you are sending and how often to expect the emails.
When to send- Put a lot of thought into how often you want to send. Most people aren’t constantly traveling all year round. As a result, they do not need or want a weekly email from your hotel with a deal, discount or news. Oversending can result in subscribers being pushed away and undervaluing your content. Send sparingly but make the campaigns count.
Promotional deals and discounts- This takes aim at the expense barrier mentioned above. Send offers and special promotional deals to your subscribers. These deals don’t have to be limited to X percent off a one night stay at your hotel. Get creative. Think about how you can make their complete travel experience easier and more fun. Maybe partnering with local restaurants or entertainment will give your prospects a reason to choose you. Don’t just limit your efforts to time spent inside of your hotel.
Guest Feedback- This may be one of the more overlooked possibilities that email marketing provides. The direct and convenient line of communication that email opens up for you can be used to gather feedback from customers. Make sure you understand your customer’s wants and needs and address them accordingly. Making changes your customers suggest through feedback also demonstrates your dedication to them and can create a more loyal customer base. Email communication makes this convenient and inexpensive to do.
These are just several examples of how to use email marketing. The possibilities are limitless. Email is such a cost effective tool that it’s easy to experiment and get creative with your solutions. Use the tracking that ESPs provide to measure the results of your campaigns so that you know what works for your hotel.