Promotion is the key to success in the hospitality industry. Whether you're the manager of a 20-bedroom boutique hotel located in the countryside that's perfect for those much-needed getaways or a 100-plus room place in the middle of a busy city, you need to rely on promotion to succeed. So, here are seven ways to promote a hotel on a budget.
The methods you should consider include:
Social media is free. Millions of people use different forms of social media each day so it's a huge opportunity for you to make your mark and reach a wide audience. After all, promotion is what gets customers making reservations and coming through your doors. But make sure you’re only jumping on the relevant trends and topics in order to avoid any negative backlash that can damage your brand.
You can offer rewards for users who are reacting to your social media posts. For example, offer a small discount code for anyone who retweets your tweet on Twitter. Something as simple as this could gain some traction during the summer months when families are looking to get away.
Another trick to promoting on a budget is to utilise user-generated content and post them onto your official accounts. For example, guests often take photos of their rooms, views and food and post them onto Instagram. Not only are they promoting your hotel to their followers, they’re also creating content that you can then repost onto your own channels.
Encourage your guests to tag you in their posts and repay the favour by tagging them back when you’re reposting. Ensure you have a style guide for posts to keep the feed consistent with your brand or have one trusted team member to look after the channels.
Writing blogs and articles about hotels and the hospitality industry in general is an excellent promotion technique and helps to build credibility. Well-written content can provide free advertising and aid positive word-of-mouth.
Some examples of blogs you can write are:
- Weekend food recipes.
- Event reviews and upcoming events.
- Customer involvement posts.
- Lists such as “the best family-friendly hotels” or “the best restaurants in…”
Also, look to have your work published on other blogs or websites. Target websites that have high traffic, are relevant to your industry and have a great chance of being visited by your prospective customers or other hotel managers who are looking to pick up some of your useful tips.
Your whole website is one big promotion tool. In this digital age, you won't find that people are calling your hotel to make a reservation. Now, they ask questions through social media and emails, and book online. Ensure that you have an attractive, user-friendly website that visitors can easily navigate and engage with.
Customers love a good deal, and they'll be more prone to staying at your hotel if you give them an incentive or deals that they can't get anywhere else. It’s a good way to show your guests that you don't have a 'one size fits all' approach and that you take their needs into consideration.
- Offer freebies or samples for guests.
- Cross-promote with other businesses.
- Offer packages for popular events at your hotel e.g. if your hotel is regularly booked for weddings and honeymoons, offer discounted rates or deals.
- Have a rewards scheme.
This is a good way to create ties, get your name recognised in your local area and possibly sign up for apprenticeship programmes for caterers and receptionists. As well as helping your hotel gain more promotion without breaking the bank, it also encourages the younger generation get involved and makes it more likely for them to post their experiences on social media.
From local produce to artwork and furniture, supporting local businesses helps get your brand name out there in a more positive light. Plus, it helps you forge strong relationships with other businesses who may be able to repay the favour for you in some way.
How You Can Help Keep Your Hotel Staff Safe
It's easy to get lost in all of the excitement surrounding the promotion of your hotel. But it's equally as important that you take into account the safety of your hotel staff at all times. As they'll be on their feet throughout their day, it's important you provide them with slip-resistant footwear to keep them safe and comfortable.
But don't just take our word for it. We've tested our shoes and found that many of our styles offer two to three times more slip-resistance than is required by ISO standards. Download our FREE test results to read more.