Today’s internet-driven business landscape is unique, exciting, and fast-paced, which means that it has essential requirements for success. Back in the day, newspaper ad space was utilized, flyers were displayed around town, and companies looking to boost profits put special promotions into effect. There is one thing that hasn’t changed. Businesses have always relied heavily upon clear-cut marketing strategies to succeed and drum up customer interest. In addition to attracting customers in the short term, carefully executed marketing strategies can increase brand recognition and awareness in the long run. This allows companies to benefit from sustained business (and profits) and continually expand their customer base.
Marketing plans have been around for a while, but because of the way technology is used today, their implementation has drastically evolved. For example, newspaper ads and flyers can be helpful, but they won’t suffice as any company’s sole marketing measure in today’s marketing landscape! This is because not everyone reads the newspaper as they used to. Some marketing strategies have changed, but their importance and necessity have not. This is especially true for hotel owners and operators, who must use every avenue at their disposal to compete in a harsher business climate.
Let’s take a look at one of the most crucial types of marketing strategies for hotels available today: building backlinks.
What is a Backlink?
In the purest sense, a backlink is an incoming hyperlink from one web page to another website. The heading for this section has a backlink to the domain www.shoutmeloud.com. More specifically, it is a backlink to a page on that domain that tells you what a backlink is. Other websites can use this type of link to show additional information, add context, and cite a source, among other things. Relevant backlinks to your site are imperative for top SEO ranking. If another website is sending a backlink to your website, then this must mean that you are fulfilling this aspect for the user.
Websites can do (almost) everything correctly and still underperform. You can optimize for mobile, images, content, and keyword text & still not rank very well on search engines if you lack backlinks. This is why acquiring backlinks should be an immediate consideration in your marketing strategy. Their importance cannot be understated.
To further illustrate just what a backlink is, consider the following example. A local business—say, a performance theater—directs its website visitors to a “fantastic, well-reviewed hotel just five minutes down the road.” When their website visitors think of watching a show at the performance theater, they might see this recommendation. If this aligns with what they are looking for, they will probably click the highlighted text, which automatically directs over the hotel’s website. The benefit is twofold. They are helping their patrons find accommodations, and the hotel gets a prequalified visitor over to their site.
That is a backlink.
Many of you are probably wondering how to get quality backlinks at this point. Let’s dive right in!
Create Evergreen Website Content
Evergreen website content is text that won’t expire or become less relevant soon after publishing (i.e., a hotel’s proximity to attractions, room types, features, and amenities, etc.). This type of content is a must for backlink support because it can accumulate many links over time. Since it can stand the test of time, it will gain more and more importance, and more people link to it. Other website owners will want to connect to content that is likely to be useful indefinitely. As if increased backlink support and inherent quality weren’t impressive enough benefits, evergreen content is also cost-effective because it serves its purpose for such a long period.
Develop an Online Business Directory Presence
Online business directories like Yelp and TripAdvisor are integral components of a local (and overall SEO) hotel marketing strategy. Finding niche directories that are focused on your business can send necessary signals to the search engines.
Another benefit is that countless potential customers utilize these directories. Individuals who have visited a company can voice their experience on said business’s official page. Those thinking of attending an establishment use these opinions, directory recommendations, and other listed information (features, amenities, and pricing) as they finalize their plans to select an establishment to patronize.
Frankly, online business directories today are what the Yellowpages was many years ago.
Connect with Local Businesses
Perhaps the most logical (and fastest-working) step towards building a strong backlink game is connecting with other local businesses. This should be a no-brainer for hotel owners. Nearby restaurants, local attractions, and everything in between should be considered. If it brings overnight guests around your area, you should consider it. Hotel guests like to explore and enjoy the area around their accommodations, and plenty of businesses are interested in obliging. Figure out the market that can serve your customers the best, and reach out to them to see if synergies exist. The perfect, mutually beneficial relationship is just waiting to be developed between hotel owners and other local businesses.
Develop a Social Media Presence
Social media is an invaluable business tool on its own, as it allows companies to appeal directly to customers in real-time. It also allows customers to voice their opinions and ask business-related questions (and when direct, accurate answers are provided, overall brand confidence is amplified)—for the ultra-affordable cost of free.
The benefits of developing a social media presence can be advantageous when establishing backlinks. They are especially good at raising awareness of promotions, announcements, and other news. If the event strikes a chord with users, then they will share it and could potentially get many links pointing to your site at once. Think of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
Furthermore, a company that’s active on social media is likely a company that’s followed by customers on social media, meaning that what you post should resonate with customers.
Developing fundamentally sound and effective marketing strategies for hotels today means, among many other things, assuring that ample backlinks are sent to a company or brand’s website. These backlinks need to be taken full advantage of (and further developed) through the adoption of top-quality SEO measures. Again, this might seem like a lot, but the truth is that it could be the difference between a business succeeding and failing.
Thanks for reading, and remember that it’s never too late to begin improving your marketing strategy— including backlinks, website text, SEO, social media presence, and other elements!