Visitors to the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Associations International Webinar were informed to capture business they needed refocus their efforts on using all channels to sell to capture the property and then engage them by telling a captivating story.
Senior marketing manager at Google, Jaclyn Loo, told hoteliers that consumers use all channels, especially the Internet, to research and gather information about travel decisions.
Business and leisure travelers are more digitally savvy, rely on the Internet when researching and booking accommodations and generally like to see rich and engaging content such as online videos to make decisions.
This year, 56% of business travelers planned on shopping around more than they did in the year prior, 64% use search engines as sources for travel information and 52% expect hotels to have a consistent digital presence. Hotels should have a mobile website, strong engagement on social media and videos to reference to attract travelers, she said.
“Having a great website is not enough these days,” Loo said. “You need to be proactive and have an evolving presence to stay top of mind.”
“Brands that have consistent proactive presence across all visible channels and bring the property experience to life online will be the most successful,” she said.
Additionally, with unmanaged travelers, hoteliers need to brainstorm new ideas to get their business, said Lisa Barham, president of sales and marketing company Hotel Resources.
Barham suggested researching companies through Wikipedia and using LinkedIn to make connections with employees. “Connect with them and tell them you’d like to help with their travel needs,” she said. “Make it personal and people will respond.”
If hoteliers “find new people to connect with every day for 15 minutes,” they could get three to four new clients a week,” she said.
Read full report, including how a hotel in Portland, Oregon captalised on it’s Fifty Shades of Grey fame, here: www.hotelnewsnow.com