Off the Beaten Path – How to market your destination when no one has heard of it (yet).
Some hotels are outside famous locations such as London, Paris, or Bali. Although these well-known destinations attract visitors with little effort, other places can also be a great way to get bookings. Sustainable tourism is a growing concern for guests. (You know that over-tourism is terrible when you see articles referring to “tourists per capita“) As a result, 41 % of travelers choose smaller and lesser-known locations. You can still market your property if it needs to be added to everyone’s bucket list.
Identify Your Audience
If you target the right people, your marketing will succeed. This is also true for Parisian hotels. There are different types of people and destinations off the beaten track. The guest experience in a hostel in Kyrgyzstan differs significantly from that of a bed and Breakfast in the Old Town in Riga, Latvia. Who is visiting your property, and why?
Create offers and messages that appeal to your guests using the guest data you collected from your property management software. What are their preferred booking channels? Your distribution blend should meet your guests wherever they are. You don’t need to please everyone. You need only to please those looking for you or property similar to yours.
Find Your Unique Selling Proposition
Find out what makes the location and property unique for your target audience. The Eiffel Tower may not be nearby, but the river is stunning, and the café down the street makes lemon meringue-filled eclairs. What will guests discover at your destination they won’t find anywhere else?
Slow travel is rising, with a 10 percent compound annual growth rate. The slow travel trend is growing at 10% per year. This type of travel focuses on education, emotional impact, and those essential local connections.
Consider how your actions can benefit the local community. Do you hire and buy from locals? Slow tourists are concerned about their visit’s impact on your property.
It would help to build partnerships with other companies to be a part of the fabric. Partnerships are beneficial to the local economy as well as each other. Partnering with local businesses can help you offer travelers an experience that will give them a deeper look into your area’s culture while highlighting your unique selling point. You can include tours and activities in stay-and-play packages. Services like photography and catering can elevate event packages. Products such as locally-branded coffee and handmade furnishings can enhance your on-property experiences.
Partnering with other companies can help you to increase your SEO and co-market. Searches for hotel accommodations are just some things that potential guests do. They also search for nearby activities.
With the economy giving off ominous rumbles, 63% of travelers are looking for bargains this year. Another 53% will take longer routes to save money or travel during the off-season. Why not choose a cheaper destination?
London might be far away, but Petworth is not. The lavender fields are a great way to experience Olde England. The crown jewels, in any case, are overrated.
Tell your guests that you are willing to offer them the most bang for their money. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a discount, but it can be in the form of added value. What amenities can you provide? Offering discounts, loyalty offers, and programs can be a great way to do so without alarming guests. For example, Why Is It So Cheap? These programs are also the most effective way to gain guest data and get repeat business.
Use revenue-management software as a guide to your pricing decisions. This software integrates into your property management system to automatically calculate optimal rates. It considers booking data, seasonality, competitor pricing, and more. This software helps you ensure that even if you offer a great deal, there is no money left on the table.
Profit from Exclusivity
“You’ll only be one …” is a song that will entice anyone who enjoys selfies. People risk their lives singing their national anthem at the top of Mount Everest. You can market that your guests are becoming trendsetters just by staying at your hotel. Make them feel special. Not everyone visits the Eiffel Tower, but they all enjoy a Narbonne wine tasting.
They found it. They’ll also want to share with the world their unique experience via all social media networks. They are not just tourists…they’re brand ambassadors.
Use Social Media to Flaunt Your Product…
It’s essential to use social networking as a way to attract visitors. Choose the most relevant networks for you (nobody has time to update Myspace anymore) and post regularly. Facebook and Instagram make sharing images and videos from your destination easy. Facebook is the most popular social network, although it has existed for almost 20 years (or 80 if you use social media terms).
Take advantage of content created by users. It’s social proof of your authenticity. Create a hashtag and run a contest to encourage guests to post about your destination or property. The best photo will win! Ask permission to share guest content and credit the original creator.
Tag your partners and promote local restaurants, attractions, and activities. You’ll get the same in return.