Major Shifts in Hotel Marketing
This week, we’re delving deep into the reasons behind the digital marketing revolution for hotels. There has been a fundamental change in recent years in the way hotels do the majority of their marketing – why?
Barry Goldstein, chief digital and distribution office for the Wyndham Hotel Group, says the shift “reflects where people spend their time.” What does that shift look like? Why does it make sense for hotels to shift their major efforts to digital? Finally, how can hotels get the most out of digital?
The articles we’re looking at today will give you insight into digital to help you make those necessary budget decisions.
Firstly, we’re looking at some of the top marketing experts explaining why exactly digital has come into focus, the advanced data analysis it offers, and the opportunity for vertical audience segmentation. After that, we’re getting a little less technical. There were a few big pieces of news in the travel space this week, and we’re also looking at startups that may be a harbinger of what is to come for the hotel marketing world.
That’s a lot to get a handle on – better get started!
As hotel brands prepare their marketing campaigns for the year ahead, sources said the focus will shift to digital media, as opposed to television ads or more traditional media.
What has changed is how customers consume media, said Dorothy Dowling, Best Western’s SVP and chief marketing officer. She said there are a lot of media trends, including cord cutting—or the elimination of cable subscriptions and other packaged platforms—and drops in cable viewership.
Hotel marketing clearly is the space that’s changed the most – it’s been upended actually – and it’s hard to keep up with the news alone, let alone acquire the skills and change thinking to cope with this new, crazy environment.
This week alone came two pieces of news that should make hoteliers sit up for what they signify. CRM-for-hotels ALICE has won $9.5 million in a Series A round led by Expedia, and SiteMinder has partnered with Priceline to offer independent hotels an advanced way of distributing their inventory online.
Marketers: it might be time to not only push your product but the ease of doing business with you. You’ve seen all the statistics about how many websites travelers visit before they book: 5, 10, 15, etc.
That’s because, as the technology has improved, consumers have taken control of the decision making from travel agents. They’re in charge now. However, as more and more sites have popped up – OTAs, Metasearch and a larger number of branded sites – the search has gotten more complicated.
In response, startups are emerging to take the complication out of trip planning. Check out the details below.
Consumers, both B2C and B2B, have become sophisticated buyers. They have the tools to make smart, fully informed buying decisions every time. They are demanding, digitally savvy and unforgiving of brands that do not serve them well, especially on social media.
At the same time, competition is brewing even in the sleepiest of verticals. Companies are realizing that if they don’t superserve their consumers, one of their competitors will or already is.
Whether it’s monitoring the performance of airline engines, enabling keyless entry to hotel rooms or helping tourists find their way around Disney World, the internet of things (IoT) is creating exciting opportunities for the travel and hospitality industry.
At the same time, data from these connections is helping marketers deliver more personalized campaigns and enhanced traveler experiences.