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Planning hotel marketing strategy

Step-by-Step Guide To Planning A Strategy With Your Hotel Marketing Agency

Communication and collaboration between a hotel’s sales team and marketing agency are at the heart of any successful marketing strategy.

Planning sales and promotional advertising is a detailed process with several parts and systems working together to achieve positive results.

Moreover, it is a lengthy assignment that takes time to show results, depending on factors like time of the year, client budget, and the expertise of your hotel marketing agency.

Since no one knows your property better than you, your sales team, and the hotel staff, it is essential to include everyone’s input when planning to market.

Equally crucial is Big Data analysis, which allows your marketing team to better understand the hotel’s strengths and weaknesses.

When planning a marketing strategy with your agency, remember to share as much information as possible before you start. This will give them a holistic picture of your hotel, helping them present the best possible options, leading to more sales, increased bookings, and a boost in your brand value.

How to plan a hotel marketing strategy

Here at Adigital, we take a specialized approach to developing a marketing plan that is easy for our clients to understand and implement.

As a result, we prefer to follow a step-by-step guide to planning a marketing strategy that covers all the bases from the very start, reducing unnecessary to-and-fro between the client and us.

Identify your target audience

One of the primary decisions you must make before starting to market is identifying your target audience.

Some of the main factors under which you can categorize customers are;

  • Long or short-term guests
  • Local or international customers
  • Couples/business travelers/families/solo tourists
  • Luxury/boutique/budget travelers

Choosing your target customer helps the marketing agency devise every aspect of the plan accordingly, from the look of the website to social media posts.

Chalk down essential dates

The good thing about working with a professional hotel marketing agency is that they know how the hospitality business works.

Still, it is important to share a list of essential annual dates and months with them.

These include months considered “high season” for the property, times when bookings are easy to come, and the agency can focus on other elements such as SEO.

Similarly, once the agency knows your “low season” dates, they can shift the marketing to attract more local customers or advertise an in-house restaurant to help with revenue intake.

Lastly, informing the agency of special festivals in the city permits them to piggyback on these events and use them as a promotional tool to entice customers.

Express your marketing goals

Communication between the hotel sales team and marketing agency throughout the year is imperative. It allows the marketing strategy to be altered based on required marketing goals.

Some of the possible outcomes and goals to think about as you go about constructing a strategy are;

  • Increase room bookings
  • Branding
  • Increase reach
  • Facility (restaurant/ballroom) marketing
  • Boost in revenue

Each of the above entails a different marketing procedure. The agency might use Google Ads for direct bookings, whereas for branding, they will work towards getting great PR for the hotel.

Similarly, social media is excellent when wanting to increase the reach of your hotel, and advertising your on-site spaces (ballroom or courtyard) for events or weddings can lead to an increase in revenue.

Agree on an overall style

Before you start planning a hotel marketing strategy, developing a general style you want to follow is worth the time.

More importantly, this style should reflect your brand and hotel’s overall theme, as the agency will incorporate it into your website and promotions. The style you pick should also work in conjunction with your target audience.

So, talk with your sales team, staff, and marketing agency to narrow down what you want.

Are you aiming for something young and colorful, edgy and boutique, business-centric, or do you want to come across as a luxury escape?

Schedule individual events

Dates matter significantly in the hotel business. No property can afford to miss out on important events that can result in increased sales.

For the agency to be most effective, giving them ample time to plan marketing for specific festivals is best.

As a result, your hotel marketing agency can put advertisements across different channels well in advance.

For example, let’s assume your city hosts a unique festival every year in April. If you provide this information to the agency, they can post special deals and packages on the website a few months beforehand.

At the same time, they can contact influencers for social media posts or hold special competitions to increase the hotel’s reach amongst probable customers.

Equally effective is email marketing, which the agency can explore to entice past customers who might have shown interest in cultural happenings previously.

Don’t forget to optimize

An often overlooked aspect of a successful marketing plan is optimization.

Search engine optimization helps boost your brand and hotel’s online presence, whether through your website, photos, or content.

Moreover, SEO is a year-round activity that includes some trial-and-error methods.

Consequently, plan a separate mini-budget in your marketing plan just for optimization, letting your marketing agency continue working on various white-hat SEO techniques as and when required.

Lockdown on marketing parameters

Giving your hotel digital agency some free hand is advisable but within certain boundaries.

When developing the marketing strategy for the hotel, decide on the time and duration of individual campaigns.

Similarly, you can designate a fixed budget for specific practices. For instance, setting aside a limited amount only for influencer marketing.

But, be flexible enough to change these plans if something is not working out.

So, if you see that influencer marketing is not helpful, the agency should be able to re-assign any remaining funds to try another marketing technique.

Track your progress

A professional hotel marketing agency will never hide from sharing its reports. Thus, establishing a monthly report system as part of your marketing strategy is vital.

There is no shame in the fact that in marketing nothing is guaranteed. Some ideas work, while others do not.

Analysis helps pinpoint the more successful campaigns so the sales team and marketing agency can change the plans accordingly.

Fix a budget

Many marketing agencies start by asking about your budget. While knowing how much money you are willing to spend is essential, it should not deter you from planning a complete hotel marketing strategy.

Your marketing plan should be holistic in nature, covering all bases. However, based on your budget, it can be implemented in parts as and when needed.

The benefit of fixing a budget is that the agency knows where to spend the money, and you don’t go overboard with expenditures.

However, if you have a comprehensive plan ready from the start, the marketing agency can allocate money within the budget to different techniques depending on your requirements and ongoing trends.

Classify the essentials

Once you have decided on all the marketing elements and have a budget, inform the agency where the plan’s focus should lie initially.

A functioning and impactful website and booking platform should undoubtedly be the primary aim of the marketing plan.

Above and beyond that, let the team know if you want more social media interaction or would prefer email marketing.

In the end, we cannot emphasize enough that a good marketing plan relies heavily on timely and continued communication between all parties involved.

Moreover, the process is slow, but with the right amount of analysis, a well-thought marketing strategy will ultimately lead to tremendous results in sales and revenue.

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