Eight Keys To Successfully Market Your Hospitality Business

Marketing in hospitality is different from other industries. More than ever, brands must wisely allocate their marketing dollars to secure a slice of the booming hospitality pie. Leaders in the hospitality industry should be aware of the principles that guide the most successful businesses and keep them booked out year after year.

1. Understand your customer’s journey.

A hyper-focus on booking can be blinding. It is more enlightening to understand how your customer got to that point. The hospitality customer’s journey is more emotional, complex and generally longer than other industries. Customers in this space are buying a memorable experience, not just a product. As such, there are more touchpoints along the way. Most customers won’t convert through the first piece of digital media they see—and if they do, you’ve likely missed some offline touchpoints. By understanding each point at which your customer paused, you’ll know exactly where to pull the right levers.

2. Pinpoint your place in the industry.

The hospitality industry isn’t just hotels. Restaurants, cruise liners and tour guides all fit into this space, but the customer journey for each is different. Restaurants have a far shorter customer journey than cruise liners. The emotional buy-in for a meal is nowhere near as invested as the property at which a family will spend ten days of their valuable time. Destinations higher on the customer investment ladder will naturally have more touchpoints in the journey to booking. Understanding your place in the hospitality industry is vital to ensuring you are marketing and tracking correctly.

3. Identify your audience bucket.

Every hospitality business will have a different customer base depending on where on the spectrum they operate. Some will attract more business travelers while others service families and honeymooners. The customer journey and touchpoints in marketing mediums will differ according to your audience. There is far more emotion involved in a family trip than one for business, so the former will be a longer decision-making process. To ensure that you aren’t wasting your marketing budget, you need to know which audience bucket you’re marketing to and how each bucket makes decisions based on the data you glean from holistic attribution strategies.

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