HOLIDAY SEASON SPECIAL EDITION: Top 3 marketing tips for independent hotels

Marketing best practices during the holiday season

The holiday season is upon us again! While the rest of the world is going gung-ho about spending time with their loved ones and making memories, this may not be the most peaceful time for hoteliers. You know exactly what I am talking about- the pressure to stay relevant and innovate with the online marketing of your property, the struggle to increase occupancy and keep your revenue coming in, you know the drill. It happens year after year and yet each year is worse than the previous. And there’s no doubt that this time of the year is particularly hard for independent properties. To use a popular millennial slang- #thestruggleisreal.

This being the case, is there a way out for independent hoteliers to not just stay relevant but to actually make profits during the holiday season? Are there any holiday marketing ideas that can help? The answer is a resounding YES. It isn’t rocket science. There are measures you can take right away to avoid all that pressure… measures that are basically “tried-tested-and-successful” creative marketing ideas for hotels.
So, if you are the owner of an independent property of any size, sit back, relax and read on. We bring you the top three marketing tips to increase your hotel revenue this holiday season.
Now, before we get into that discussion, I assume that you already have a cloud-based Property Management System in place. The best way to take the “how do I manage my hotel operations more efficiently!” load off of your shoulders is to invest in a platform that does everything for you. (Well, almost everything that’s related to your hotel’s operations!) and a cloud PMS does exactly that. And without fear of contradiction I can tell you that Hotelogix has transformed the way thousands of hoteliers across the world manage their hotels.
So, if you haven’t already experienced the joys of a cloud-based PMS, there is no better time like now. Literally, do it now! Hotelogix presents its year-end offer where you pay for 6 months and use our award-winning PMS for free for the next 6 months! Hurry up, because the offer is only valid for the first 100 customers who claim it.

Coming back to where we left off- here are the three Christmas marketing ideas for independent hotels. When it comes to the holiday season, more and more people are opening up to the idea of traveling with family. So, create a campaign for this season and go all out on marketing it.
NOTE: A cloud-based PMS, like Hotelogix, will give you complete flexibility with building packages to your preference. Create a holiday season package which you can start promoting online. You could even create specific packages for couples, for families, for corporates, etc. The more you customize, the more appealing it is for your prospective guests!

The following three points will guide you through the three most lucrative channels to market your Christmas campaign..

1. Website

We won’t take you down the road of optimizing your website and all of that because you probably already know that part. What we want to address here is once you have strategized and chalked out your Christmas campaign, make sure you use your website to promote it unabashedly. A compelling banner or a pop-up will entice anyone who stumbles upon your website to check out the campaign and potentially make a booking. Make sure the design is aesthetically pleasing and the content hits hard. Run promotional ads. Push out blogs that capture the essence of the holiday season and promote your campaign through it.

2. Social media

In this digital age, social media has enabled us to communicate news faster than ever before. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are all weapons that can empower hoteliers immensely, when used efficiently. We all know the expression “A picture is worth a thousand words.” It has never been as relevant as it is today. Get a professional photographer to take high-quality pictures of your property and post them lavishly on Instagram. Put up images of the guests at your property having a good time. Create impressive invites for the campaign and use that to create interest in your holiday package. Send out teasers and run social media ads. Your social media strategy can really be a game changer for you in this context because the hospitality industry, unlike many others, has the luxury of using the visual element to promote business. Play it well and you will meet great success.

3. Emails

Consider this to be your ‘Hoteliers’ email marketing guide for the holiday season’. Even though this may sound cliched, emailers are one of the most effective means of communication still. While social media does have an addictive effect on people, the attention span of the consumer on social media is much lesser. Relatively, emails have more of an impact. So, pick and choose your email target audience wisely such that the most prospective ones get a “personalized” mail from you. This could be your corporate clients, guests who come to your from a travel agent, your repeat guests and perhaps guests who have left an amazing review for you. Send across an email that conveys the fact that you value them and that you would love to host them over the holiday season.

These are three ways by which any independent hotel can aspire to increase their visibility, occupancy and eventually, revenue. But the real trick is to get creative and take the roads less taken. To afford that kind of creativity, you need to have peace, calm and clarity to brainstorm and really understand your guests’ expectations and try and outdo that.

The best gift you can give yourself this holiday season is the luxury of peace of mind. Transfer all your mundane worries to Hotelogix PMS. We will handle them so seamlessly and effortlessly that you will have all the time in the world to focus on the more important aspects of the hospitality business- To be of service to your guests.

Divya Bhat

Divya Bhat is a content strategist and writer with over a decade’s experience in journalism and marketing. Apart from working with some of India’s leading media houses, she has also worked as a French language translator. An avid Customer Experience enthusiast, she is also passionate about the Travel & Hospitality industry. You can reach out to her at divya.bhat@hotelogix.com