A strong marketing focus is at the heart of every business, and those in the hospitality industry are no exception. Making your brand stand out and appeal to various demographics is key for success in todays unprecedented economic climate.
From attracting new guests from all over the country – or even the world – to encouraging repeat customers, developing your brand and footfall through marketing is the key to achieving success.
Today…Brand awareness is crucial for any business – if they don’t know who you are, where you are, and importantly that you’ve even re-opened, the chance of turning potential customers into actual ones is extremely low! The level of awareness and how to attract customers will depend on what kind of business you are.
Hospitality businesses that cater for their local geographic target audience will find more success with print. Flyers and leaflets are a great way of spreading the word about your business locally and it’s also an extremely cost-effective method. For businesses aiming to attract customers globally, online marketing is a fantastic route and utilising your online presence means you’ll be able to reach out to many more people.
Promotional activity should be a key part of your marketing, promotions are a great way of boosting sales and awareness – especially during these “just reopening” times, where discount vouchers and coupons make great promotional materials. For destination businesses, think about printing your vouchers out on postcards to play on the travel theme. For restaurants and cafés, a menu of offers is a fun idea. For event caterers, print them on invites – there are lots of possibilities!
There’s a lot to be said for customer loyalty. As well as being a lot cheaper to sell to existing customers rather than new ones, current customers are also 67% more likely to spend more than a newbie. You can keep your customers coming back with a loyalty or rewards scheme. By rewarding customers who choose your business, they’re more likely to come back and refer a friend (which you could also incentivise as part of a promotion). For restaurants, cafés, and certain tourist spots like museums, loyalty cards are a great option. Hotels and theme parks would benefit better from an online points system or email flow.
Types of Marketing for Hospitality and Tourism
Here are a few of our top marketing tips for the hospitality industry.
1. Direct Mail Marketing
Sending something in the post is more tangible than, for example, sending an email. That’s why catalogues and folded leaflets perform better than many attempts at email marketing. In fact, the average open rate for direct mail in the UK is 57.1%, which is double that of email marketing which averages at 25%.
2. Mobile Marketing
Up to last year mobile travel and hospitality bookings saw an increase of 1700%. To make the most of this marketing trend, make sure your website is as mobile friendly as possible and consider making hotel and restaurant bookings available through market apps.
3. Dynamic and Personalised Email Marketing
Personalisation is a huge trend in marketing – because it works. You know your customers better than anyone and have probably already segmented your target market into specific groups. For many hospitality businesses these groups might be couples, families, over 25s
etc. Once you know what certain groups of customers like, you can send marketing content and offers you know will appeal to them. For families, a restaurant might offer a ‘children eat free’ deal that wouldn’t appeal to couples. Whereas a two-for-one deal would appeal to couples.
4. Booking Retargeting
How many times have you noticed a customer reach your booking funnel before changing their mind at the last minute? According to net affinity, hoteliers report up to 81% of booking abandonment.
This potential customer has already shown interest in your services. So, if you had a second chance at landing a sale, wouldn’t you go for it? Booking retargeting allows you to use other online marketing platforms to draw attention back to your booking funnel.
5. Social Media Marketing
Another popular option for hospitality businesses is social media. A more visual platform, you can use videos to show off how amazing your service is – and according to a Render forest survey, 78% of businesses got more traffic after using videos.. From tours around your attraction and videos of your facilities to food being made, video is king for promoting your business.
We hope that the article made it easier to understand why marketing must be the focus of your business today. To learn more about how we can help you, visit our stand at the show or simply contact us on: email@example.com or Tel: 01438 500 073