As a modern hotel competing for business in the 21st century, you’ll no doubt have some kind of digital marketing strategy in place to ensure your brand name stands out.But with this area of promotion proving to be ever-changing, how can you know if what you have in place is going to be suitable for your business? Alongside the obvious techniques like content creation, what else can you do to promote your hotel digitally?
Here are a few of the top trends you’re likely to see in 2017 that you could mine for ideas over the next few months.
1. Video marketing According to the Cisco VNI forecast, nearly a million minutes of video content will cross the network every second by 2020, while IP video traffic is set to represent 82 per cent of all consumer internet traffic globally in three years’ time.Meanwhile, Google/Ipsos Connect recently found that three in four adults watch YouTube at home on their mobile devices and they are twice as likely to pay close attention compared to TV viewers.Video is huge and only going to get bigger, so it’s time to create a strategy for marketing in this format. Make up a calendar just as you would for written content and then keep coming up with different ideas and topics that are relevant for the seasons. Finally, don’t forget to share the finished videos on as many platforms as you can for maximum exposure.
2. Influencer marketing has really been booming lately. According to Chute, more than 60 per cent of brands implemented this technique in their marketing strategy last year and this figure is expected to jump to 75 per cent in 2017.Inviting bloggers, vloggers and Instagram celebrities with huge numbers of followers to review and recommend your hotel could really pay off, as people like to engage with companies they know their peers already use. However, do make sure you don’t end up paying over the odds for this exposure – perhaps your influencer might take a free stay rather than payment in exchange for their content to protect your ROI.
3. Social media advertising Social media continues to be massive as we go into 2017 and its potential for reaching would-be guests cannot be stressed enough. You can implement a paid campaign if you have something short-term to promote and really narrow down your parameters (e.g. graduates, couples, etc) in order to really target your desired audience.However, it’s worth noting that you might want to consider which channels you go for, as recent research suggests Facebook and Twitter are declining and Snapchat and Instagram are on the up
4. Big data analytics Never have hotel owners had access to so much guest data, but it doesn’t amount to anything if you aren’t analysing it and making use of the results in your hotel digital marketing strategy. You can look at social media engagement, competitor performance, behaviour of different demographics and much more. This should help you to boost personalisation and hopefully increase conversions.
5. Virtual reality This is something that keeps making it onto lists of trends yet never coming to fruition, but there are still suggestions that virtual reality is going to be big news in the hospitality industry – eventually. The Cisco VNI forecast states that VR traffic will increase 61-fold between 2015 and 2020 with technology such as tools that allow guests to take mock tours before making a booking particularly highlighted. If you get in on the action now, you might have a headstart on your competitors once VR finally does achieve its potential.What other trends do you think will be big by the end of this year?