With a recovering economic climate, people are becoming more willing to invest their savings and income in starting their businesses. A few popular business ideas that the business sector has seen growth in the past few years have been restaurants, home-based businesses, and boutique hotels.
Boutique hotels are small, yet luxurious, privately owned businesses, many of which compete with local, large brand-name hotel and resort chains. It may seem futile to compete with national hotel chains, but in reality, guests are more open to the idea of personal experience. That is best accomplished with a boutique hotel. All you need is a good marketing plan to generate interest.
Are you looking to open a boutique hotel? Do you already own one and have yet to reap the benefits of an effective marketing plan? Here are a few tips that can help you promote your hotel brand and generate interest in your hotel.
One of the easiest ways to garner attention is through press opportunities. If you have yet to create a PR department in your hotel, it may be beneficial to create one. Most hotels have PR departments to pitch stories and attract the attention of media organizations.
Most media organizations are hospitality-industry friendly, so be sure to send a well-crafted and appealing press release. Consider it a win if you get at least one news outlet to feature a story about your hotel in the first two months using PR as a marketing strategy. The more exposure your hotel gets, the more bookings you can generate.
If someone is looking for hotels in your general area, they’re probably going to refer to their preferred search engine to research prices and amenities. If you’ve just opened your hotel, it’s possible that your hotel won’t show up in the immediate search results. SEO, or search engine optimization, is a form of internet marketing that integrates specific keywords/topics with content, allowing your website to climb the Google search ranks. By using SEO strategies, your hotel website will become more visible to the general public, which, in the end, will help you draw in guests.
All businesses, especially hotels, have to keep up to date with all the relevant social media accounts. Don’t just create accounts for the sake of it, upload and post fresh, engaging content to generate followers, likes, and extend your hotel’s reach to new consumer bases. One of the best social media accounts you can have is a Yelp account. Yelp will help businesses have a direct presence in their consumer base. Be sure always to have updated business information and great pictures that appeal to Yelp users. Typically, you’re looking to generate positive reviews on sites like these. If you get negative feedback, remember always to respond and acknowledge the dissatisfied customer’s feelings.
It always helps to offer customers discounts that are within your hotel’s means. Make sure you’re still making money even though you’re slashing prices. One way to both promote your hotel discounts and generate exposure for your boutique hotel is to use websites for advertising the discounts for you.
Public Relations isn’t just about managing the press. It’s about representing your business with other key stakeholders and outside organizations. One of the functions of a PR professional is to network with other organizations within your industry, and in this case, it would be the hospitality and tourism industry. The job description of your hotel’s PR professional should be to handle communication with your local tourism board, convention bureau, and business associations. This is to maximize promotional opportunities. Usually, organizations like these will also help you expand your reach.
To run and manage a successful, boutique hotel that can compete with larger, name-brand chains, you have to have a good marketing plan. By following these simple marketing strategies, you’ll be able to increase reach and sales, promote your business, and generate press.