How To Tailor Your Hotel Marketing Strategy To The New Customer Journey

There is a completely new path from vacation want to actually booking
Gone are the days where prospective travelers view a few booking websites or go straight to a hotel’s website to plan a vacation. Now, a path to the vacation is segmented into many online mico-moments. Today, we talk about a hotel marketing strategy that capitalize on this new buying behavior.
It’s about the journey

Whoever coined the phrase, “It’s not about the destination it’s about the journey” was right. Let’s dive into the customer journey towards booking a vacation to understand the hotel marketing strategy.

Leisure travelers look at hundreds of pieces of online information prior to booking a trip. This information includes everything from review sites to videos and social networks. Therefore, it is important to be visible to influence and have a shot at winning.

During each phase of the journey, the customer is looking for different information. Those phases are as follows:
  • I Want to Get Away (ie. Best Caribbean Vacations)
  • Make a Plan (ie. Hotels Near the French Quarter)
  • Time to Book (ie. Hotel Deals in Japan)
  • Venture About (ie. Napa Valley Wine Tour)
Millions of Options But Where to Go

According to Google, one in 3 travelers say they haven’t decided on a destination when they first start thinking about a trip.

This is excellent news. A portion of hotel marketing strategies may focus on providing information to help nudge them towards you.

Where are the travelers?

Your topic is hiding in these questions:

  • What does the prospect need to know/learn/understand about your products & services BEFORE they can convert into a paying customer?
  • What barriers/objections do they have to convert into a paying customer? Think about consumer perceptions about your industry.
  • What are they thinking about/worrying about/researching/talking about before they decide to buy your products & services?
  • What is the primary pain point your prospect is experiencing? What problems are they facing?

For your hotel marketing strategy to work, you must be visible. A hotel can accomplish that by using both paid and organic methods. Take five minutes to answer the questions below and see if you are missing any opportunities to improve your hotel’s marketing strategy.

Organic Examples:
  • Youtube – What does your YouTube presence look like? Do you have lots of content or only a few videos?
  • Facebook – Is your Facebook listing complete? Do you respond to comments or questions? Are you providing information visitors want?
  • Content Strategy – What information does your potential customer want and do you have a place to provide that information?
  • Other social platforms – Are you available on other widely used social platforms?
Key Takeaways:
  • Keep social media properties up to date and rich with content. Don’t skimp on photo and video quality.
  • Make sure your website is user friendly, SEO friendly, and optimized for mobile. 60% of searches come from mobile devices (Google).
  • If you haven’t already, claim your property on Tripadvisor.
Paid Examples:
  • Are you advertising to people who have already visited your website?
  • Do your Facebook and AdWords ad target specific groups of travelers?
  • Are you using review site’s paid options to boost your hotel’s listing?
  • How are you currently keeping track of your digital strategy?
Key Takeaways:
  • There are many ways to reach your customers at different phases of their travel planning journey. It is important to use the right message on the right platform.
  • Keep track of what is working and what is not working for your hotel.

Setting up a winning strategy requires a well thought-out plan. We’d love to help! Contact us.

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