If you want to market your hotel successfully, tell your guests how it is.
“Nobody is perfect,” and admitting small flaws makes you instantly “human” and lovable.
And that’s a marketing professional speaking. Crazy. I know.
Of course you should present your hotel in the best light.
But marketing a hotel with embellished hotel descriptions and photos is only successful at first glance.
Sure, this might initially attract more guests and get them to book, but once they get to the hotel, you’re in for trouble.
Namely when your guests enter the hotel and realize things are a little different than they are presented.
How do I know that?
During my time as a hotel manager, I’ve witnessed first-hand how disappointed guests react:
Business travelers complained about the size of their hotel room: the photos made it look much larger than it really was due to clever angle shots.
Vacationers were lured to the hotel’s website with the promise of six on-site restaurants. But only three were open each day.
Or the disruptions caused by renovations that were either kept secret or downplayed.
Guests felt cheated and – understandably – there was inconvenience. Complaints, discussions, annoyance and if it got really bad, these guests also actively spoke about their displeasure with other visitors to the hotel. Or went online and shared their reviews with the rest of the world…
Not to mention the effort and additional work necessary to soothe these guests – sometimes it worked and sometimes didn’t.
How much easier and much more pleasant! is it to make people happy.
To have a good product and to honestly talk about it. And when guests are at the hotel, to exceed their expectations. Not with costly gifts, but small gestures and with attention.
Then something similar happens – your guests speak about their experience. Only this time, it’s about their wonderful time at your hotel.
You now have a positive outcome.
Today’s customers and guests are well informed and possess fine “B.S.” antennas“. They pick up very quickly what’s going on, and won’t let themselves be fooled. Honesty is important.
Marketing and selling is a matter of trust, not strategy.
Successful marketing for hotels follows the same principle : people prefer to buy where they feel comfortable and understood. In short, they prefer to do business with someone they trust and like.
Be honest and say it bluntly:
“Our rooms may not be the most spacious, but when it comes to warmth and the well-being of our guests, we are the best!”
“Don’t expect designer furniture or dress codes from us, but an enchanted hotel park to relax in and hosts who anticipate your every wish.”
Most guests are looking for a pleasant Hotel experience, not for the perfect room to overnight.
And you can create this hotel experience, because once your guests are in house, you have countless opportunities to surprise them.
“Small gestures – big impact.”
It’s that easy: A service employee hears a random comment.
Perhaps Mr B. is telling a guest at the neighbor table how much he likes mousse au chocolat. And although it’s not an item on the menu (and even though he doesn’t ask for it), it’s served to him for dessert, together with a huge smile.
Or a handwritten congratulatory card from the hotel manager to the young couple, who enthusiastically told him about the forthcoming purchase of their first house during the cocktail party.
Small things that show your guests that you really care about people.
Live hospitality instead of just pretending to.
Of course, there are also guests who find fault with everything and don’t appreciate anything. Here, you can only do one thing. Use your hotel marketing to deter these type of guests and instead, attract more and more of your dream guests.
These are the guests that will understand when problems arise and know that you will do everything possible to fix them.
Hotel products are interchangeable – honest and warm hospitality is not.
This is your strength, and it is your key selling point.
That’s how you successfully market your hotel.
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