Digital media is quickly becoming the only viable way for hotels to sell their rooms. Physical advertising, in almost every market, is losing its ability to make a meaningful impact on customers such is the emphasis on digital connection today.
The entire customer lifecycle has been transformed by the digital world.
Digital media has many segments that are great for hotel marketing and property managers looking to utilise as many as possible within an guest-centric strategy.
It’s very important to first know who you’re targeting before any type of advertising will be effective but once you know this, here’s how digital media can significantly boost your bookings.
The digital world is where your guests are spending their time
The modern traveller is someone who is accustomed to being connected to technology in one way or another everywhere they go. Not only do they believe in the benefits of digital technology but they know how to use it in a number of sophisticated ways. Even those who have been slower on the uptake, baby boomers for instance, are more or less being forced in the same direction. It was reported last year that 57% of hotel bookings are now occurring online.
It’s an overwhelming number which indicates the risk hotels run if they aren’t employing a digital marketing strategy to attract guests.
Hotels must adapt to the technical demands of their customers – including going mobile.
More than 50% of travellers who book digitally now do so from a mobile device, so it’s imperative to ensure your content is optimised for mobile and smartphones.
Digital media makes things easier for both guest and hotel
Well, at least it’s supposed to. One of the reasons people embrace technology and any online resource is because it clarifies and accelerates their task or experience. These virtues should be front of mind for your hotel when creating a website or an advertisement on the internet.
Don’t think beyond what the guest wants to find out, and make sure you display this information as attractively and simply as possible.
An example here is to limit the depth of your website. People want to quickly access information on your homepage instead of clicking down through numerous links.
Another issue is that of social media widgets. While you absolutely want people to visit you on social media and become a follower you don’t necessarily want them to do it in the middle of browsing your website. They may get sidetracked and never return to make a booking. Be careful of where you place your social links.
Digital media expands your advertising potential
The great thing about being online is that there are so many different ways you can engage with travellers. Statistics will tell you a strong social media presence is essential, as is a strategy around video marketing. Last year, social network ad spending reached $36 billion, representing 16% of all digital ad spend globally.
In addition, if people are going to consume written content these days they’re more likely to do it digitally, which is why it’s a great idea to publish a hotel blog.
Beyond this is what you can do with search engine optimisation and search engine marketing, both of which can be effective in putting your hotel in front of many more potential guests.
Digital media better allows you create a unique brand
Because of the different platforms within digital media the potential for hotel marketers to be creative is much greater and enables them to connect with a lot more customers. Some travellers engage with beautiful images, some prefer videos, others are content to take a deep dive into written information. Digital media allows your hotel to create this, on brand, all at the same time too.
Think about what your unique selling points are and the best way to communicate these to your audience. So if you’re located in a destination that lends itself to stunning photography, put this on your website and social media. Conversely, your appeal might be more historic so make sure you have interesting stories on your blog.