Making the Most of Creative Hotel Promotions & Social Media (Part 1)

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Renee Radia
Renee Radia
February 13, 2013
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With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, hotels have been sure to ramp up their marketing efforts these last few weeks. Travel marketers are quick to take advantage of holidays because of the ample opportunities for creative promotions and partnerships. I recently read an article on HotelNewsNow about how some boutique hotels are taking unique approaches by not offering discounts on rooms, but instead offering exclusive packages that add extra value to the guests’ stays. This is a great approach to bring in more guests and increase bookings, and coupling these creative promotions with specific social media strategies will work twofold to draw guests in to both your actual property as well as your social media channels.

Creating the promotionThink about your guests. What are they interested in? What sort of activities would they want to do while staying at your hotel? Consider their demographics and psychographics. If your hotel is not necessarily in a big tourist area, consider creating a package with ties to amenities within your hotel, such as a discounted spa day or complimentary breakfasts. However, if your guests come to you and explore the city, this is a great opportunity to partner with other local spots to benefit you both. The hotel referenced in the above article enticed guests to book by offering 2-for-1 admissions to local museums and a free glass of wine at a nearby cultural arts center. There is so much potential for creativity with your packages and promotions that it can be a really fun process to create them! Don’t forget to use wit or humor, if appropriate. Think outside the box. Be original!

A quick non-hospitality themed example to get your creative juices flowing is when I was in college I had an internship where I was promoting certain movies in theaters to college student organizations. I organized a “Fairy Tale Date Night” to promote one of the new Shrek movies and it was given away on a radio contest. I partnered with relevant local businesses to donate themed prizes – “make-ogres” for the couple at a salon, flowers, dinner at a royalty-themed restaurant, and a round of mini golf (putting on the “green”). There are lots of possibilities for tying in events or holidays with creative promotions at your hotel and all without losing any money on rooms!

To see what to do after your promotion is live, stay tuned for Part 2 in this series, in which I will discuss how to leverage your social media channels to get the most out of your hotel’s promotions and packages. The best part is that with any budget, large or small, social media can play a big part in crowdsourcing your promotion and your property will get new business, both new and old.

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