15 New Year’s resolutions hotels should make for 2015, by Rupesh Patel
What are the great opportunities awaiting you and your business in 2015? It feels like it was just yesterday when 2014 came rolling in and now, we’re a few days away from welcoming 2015!
For fellow hoteliers, as we look back on the year that was, it’s also the perfect time to look forward and plan the things we want to do and achieve in 2015. In short, it’s time to create our New Year’s Resolutions for 2015.
Here are 15 New Year’s resolutions that I believe every hotel should make for 2015.
1. Be more social
Do an audit of your social media assets and review how active you were engaging travelers on your social media accounts. Make it a point to post at least once a day this 2015.
2. Respond to reviews
Don’t let a single review about your hotel online remain unanswered. Be timely in your responses and make sure your responses are appropriate and well thought out.
3. Be more hardworking to get more positive reviews
Positive online reviews won’t be handed to you on a silver platter. Well, at least not all the time. You have to be more proactive when it comes to asking your guests for positive reviews by training your staff and using review marketing tools.
4. Blog, blog, blog!
If you still don’t have a blog on your website, you are missing a big opportunity to provide potential guests with valuable content.
5. Get more personal
Generic marketing and customer service tactics no longer work. The more customize and personalize your marketing tactics and strategies, the more effective they’re going to be.
6. Improve your website
Here’s a tip. Ask a friend or anyone who has not seen your website. Show him or her your hotel’s website and ask them to give you their unfiltered, no holds barred feedback – what they like and what they don’t like. From here, you already have a few ideas on how to improve your website’s user experience.
7. Strengthen your local marketing
While you’re improving your far-reaching online marketing strategies, you also have to improve your hotel’s local marketing initiatives. To start, research a local event that you can sponsor, set a meeting with the organizers, and explore what mileage you can get for your hotel.
8. Provide more training for your staff
Your hotel staff is one of your most important assets. It’s extremely crucial for your hotel that you provide training for your staff to ensure that their skills are at par with the gold standards in the hotel industry.
9. Be more creative
The competition among hotels is tough and you need to do something out of the ordinary to get noticed.
10. Build your list
Have you ever heard of the marketing mantra “The Money Is In the List”? If you’re not collecting the emails of your guests and potential guests, they you’re missing a great deal of opportunity to build a long-term relationship with them. Create an opt-in form on your website and make sure that you get your guests’ email address when they book a room in your hotel.
11. Give your guests free access to a high speed Wi-Fi connection
If you’re still charging your guests for internet access, then 2015 is the year you give this service to them for free. Even small coffee shops give their customer fee Internet access, there’s no reason for you to still charge for it.
12. Reward your loyal hotel guests
It’s common knowledge in marketing and sales that it is more difficult and expensive to acquire new customers than to retain existing ones. This 2015, make it your resolution to treat your loyal guests better and reward them for their loyalty.
13. Explore affordable advertising options
I know for a fact that boutique and small hotels don’t have the same marketing budget as big hotels. However, there are relatively affordable advertising options that you can explore such as Facebook advertising and Google AdWords Express.
14. Mind your metrics
This year, do you know for a fact which marketing tactics worked for your hotel and which did not? If yes, do you have statistical and irrefutable proof? This coming 2015, make sure that you educate yourself about marketing success measurements tools such as Google Analytics. It may get overwhelming, but if you want to make informed marketing decisions this 2015, this is absolutely necessary.
15. Strengthen your ties with OTAs
I know that you would rather have guests book with you directly than them going through an OTA. However, you cannot deny the number of bookings that online travel agencies get and the reach they have. So, instead of treating these OTAs as your competitors, treat them as your partners and collaborate with them on how you can improve your hotel’s presence on their websites.
A new year, a fresh start. I wish you and your hotel success this 2015! Happy New Year in advance and good luck!
About the author
About Rupesh Rupesh Patel, hotelier and founder at SmartGuests.com, a U.S.-based hospitality marketing website that is dedicated to helping hotels make connections with their guests, using tools that result in positive reviews and increases in customer service scores. He regularly shares his passionate for customer engagement and marketing on numerous social sites and blogs.Source: SmartGuests.com