Knowing how to market a hotel is all about determining its customer base. The setting of the hotel defines its usage. Amid the hospitality industry, there exists three types of hotel use—transit, commercial, and tourist. A hotel’s location establishes whether its guests will be travelers, business clients, or vacationers. Locale of lodging will be the factor that defines a market. To reach guests that visit the location of a particular hotel is marketing. How to attract potential guests towards a particular hotel is where the market and marketing come into play.
To market a hotel, you will need:
- Property—marketable standards
- Accommodations—adequate to outstanding
- Services—basic to full
- Photographs—strategically staged
- Affiliations—hospitality-based (optional)
- Technical supports—available, accessible or outsource
- Media options—web, print, cable, audio, and direct
- Advertising budget
- Consider affiliation verses independent. While franchises and associations represent recognizable standards within the hospitality industry, an independent status places the hotel on its own merit for representation. Costs, fees, qualifying standards, and regulations do apply upon affiliating with a franchise or the majority of association. In lieu of financial participation, a hotel that has affiliation realizes the benefit of continuous and regular market promotion. Should a hotel’s site be geographically positioned to where need of lodging outweighs supply, the property may sustain well on individual methods of market. Yet, in a variety of instances, a hotel can benefit from a combination of affiliation and independent marketing.
- Produce a brochure. Create and develop a brochure that will represent, as well as to promote, the hotel. A brochure’s content should be developed to presentably market, through select photography and creative text, the hotel’s setting, any affiliation, accommodations, amenities, services and features, along with contact information.
- Post appropriate and adequate signage. Identify the hotel’s presence with notable signs. Distinct lettering, with text that is direct and simplistic, serves as effective approaches amid sign designs. As for color treatment, an application of from two to four compatible and contrasting shades will provide a most sufficient visual impact. Though a considerable measure, the supplementation of roadside signage can further enhance hotel marketing.
- Establish an online presence. Design, construct and post a Website that will represent, advertise and promote the hotel. Amid all forms of media, the Internet should be a marketing prerequisite for the hotel. Evolutions within hospitality markets deem a property’s necessity to be on the Web for optimum viability. Focus the Website content to be congruent with the hotel setting and its intended customer market base.
- Entertain print methods. Business cards, stationary, newspapers and magazine advertisements, catalogs, coupons, and vouchers are among the more common modes of print marketing for a hotel. Print advertising necessitates strategic variations of design and layout.
- Examine broadcast Media. Television, network or cable, offers broad-range exposure. Another market to contemplate is radio, which reaches a considerable audience. Spot or saturation advertising campaigns are available with either media. As such media marketing has its exclusivity; productions on visual or audio levels come with an attached level of expense. If the scope of a hotel warrants, and its advertising budget can allocate, broadcast media is a viable marketing tool.
- Directly market the customer base. Dependent upon hotel setting and guest room availability, the base to market may be business clients or a group tour. Such direct marketing employs a customized approach. Devise, create and develop one of two plans—by mail, or in-person. Either method will deem a hard copy informative proposal. Direct marketing campaigns, particularly, when targeted to a designated potential market, can be unlimited, in distribution, and exclusively effective. Always gauge accommodation with availability, or, in other words, be equipped to support the offer—if accepted.
- Support marketing options. Whatever modes of market are chosen to act upon, be aware that such marketing serves as the hotel’s proverbial face. For sake of appearance and presentation, it is strongly advisable to secure the appropriate support or advice for specific marketing modes.