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The four reasons your hotel marketing isn’t working

Dec

2012

WIHP_The four reasons your hotel marketing isn’t working

A hotel, any hotel, working to improve their online marketing sometimes encounters problems and their hotel marketing strategy fails. When we say it fails we mean that they aren’t making enough direct bookings through their site. After hundreds of case studies it turns our there are only four main reasons for the marketing strategy not to work. They are:
1. Hotel lacks brand awareness
2. An unprotected brand
3. Incomplete or inadequate website and offer
4. Bad service
There are no other reasons for bad results in hotel marketing, again we’re talking about direct bookings. Here are a few tips that can help you improve your marketing efforts following the above points.

Hotel lacks brand awareness

Your hotel’s brand isn’t measured in direct bookings, but in all bookings generated from internet channels. This includes OTAs, because the billboard effect they will bring to your hotel’s website. What share does the internet represent for your hotel? More than 60%, less than 60%? only 30%?
Proper distribution of hotel’s segmentsA hotel which has a sufficient brand awareness should look like this:
-Direct 10%.
-Return Guests 10%.
-Internet 60%.
-Other 20%.

An unprotected brand

When searching for your hotel, does one always find your hotel’s website site? There are dozens of sites where travelers search for your hotel: Google, Yahoo, TripAdvisor, Trivago, Kayak etc.
Do a search for your hotel using all the rate comparison sites you know, the review sites etc and check who is first when the client wants to book. Even if it costs you money to be there, it’s essential in protecting your brand.

Incomplete or inadequate website and offer

Is your hotel’s website and offer interesting enough to get your user’s attention and convert them into a guest? The way you can find out is again to look at your internet bookings and see where they come from.
If you have 15% direct bookings or less, then you must review your offers, your website and the booking path to make it much more compelling for guests.

Bad service

Of course that’s obvious: Are you well located on TripAdvisor? Well that’s not the right question. Because there are plenty of factors that could influence your position on TripAdvisor. The real question is, is my ranking improving on TripAdvisor (and other review sites)? Are the same negative points being mentioned or do they get fixed regularly? In other words is the situation getting better or worse.
If you’re constantly improving, fixing the problems from customer feedback that’s what your guests will notice and your best indicator of good service is how much business you are getting due to word of mouth. We see hotels getting plenty of bookings from TripAdvisor despite not being on the top of the ranking list.

In summary

It’s completely possible to dramatically increase your profit margins by having a great website and marketing campaign for your hotel. What you should do it isolate which of the four above factors need most work and correct them.

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Author

Tony Loeb

VP Technology

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