Let’s say you have a special offer that will make a difference for your target audience. Then why not promote it to get more bookings and build customer loyalty?
The way you get special offers noticed is a factor of how effective they are in reaching the audience. In order to make the most out of the special offers, use the ideas below:
- Widget on your website;
- Email marketing;
- Social media;
- Google My Business;
- Google Ads;
- SMS marketing;
- Phone calls.
Whatever you implement, make sure that you clearly describe offer details: a promotion period, who qualifies or what they need to do to qualify. Provide a link that will redirect clients to booking a room at a corresponding rate.
Widgets serve as an additional advertising tool for business. Most widgets appear in a form of a pop-up window or a dialogue box. They are always in the users’ field of view, which makes them perfect for posting notifications and other important information.
Discount widgets drive more direct bookings, maintaining price parity. Clients compare rates and prefer your website offer over the ones on OTAs.
Creating widgets in TravelLine Booking Engine, you set a promotional message, widget’s look-and-feel and choose certain website pages where you want it to be displayed. You can create just one and alter it when you start another campaign or create several: one for a website page.
82% of consumers open emails from business. 76% of email subscribers have made purchases from an email marketing message. The return on investment (ROI) rate of email marketing campaign is 4000%, which makes it a powerful way to spread the word about your special offer and your accommodation itself. Here are the steps to follow to launch an email marketing campaign:
Pull customer database
Do it from the tape chart, your CRM system or TravelLine account. To do this in TravelLine account, go to "Reports" > "Bookings". Choose the period of time, within which stayed the guests that you want to send emails to. In "Source" choose website and mobile version of site. Click "View" button and tick the "Guests receiving email newsletters" box. The emails will be sorted by filters you set. Download the Excel file list when you are done.
Do not send promotional emails to guests that already booked rooms for the offer’s timeframe. They might cancel the reservations to book again at a lower price. To avoid this, create another report: set a filter by arrival date within your promotional period. When you get a list, remove the emails of coming guests from the list that you have already downloaded.
Put the email together
- In "from" field write either your hotel name or your/teammate’s name to add a more personal touch.
- Introduce promotion in the subject line: be catchy and compelling. Avoid using the word "free", it triggers spam detectors.
- Do not forget about the preheader — the text that goes right after the subject. It is just few words (40-130 characters), that clarify the email’s purpose and, thus, affect the open rate.
- Add visuals: try using your own photos rather than stock ones or create graphics to emphasise the discount rate/ promotion period with free platforms like Canva.
Include a call to action
Effective promotional emails should have a flow that leads to the desired action. It does not matter if it is at the end of your email as long as it is clear and easy to spot. Although it is better if customers do not have to scroll to find it. Link the CTA button with the booking page on your website, so that by clicking on it, guests are redirected to booking at a discount rate.
Use either your CRM system or an email marketing service to launch the campaign. If you have not done it before, consider email marketing platforms with free trial periods. Preview these services before investing in any of them.
Describe offer details
Be as precise as possible: give more facts and less positive adjectives. Long roundabout advertisements do not make sense to clients, so they are likely to leave them unread.
- Who qualifies
- Promotion period
- What to do to qualify
Use hashtags to make your post seen by more people.
Hurry up! There is not much time left! Book a room at the lowest price imaginable. Our luxurious hotel will exceed your greatest expectations. Our friendly staff will take care of you. We are situated right in the city center, this is the best location you could find. Do not miss a chance to book now!
Book a room until May 1 and get breakfasts for free:
Go to bio and click on the link to book :)
Add an image or a video
Images are critical on social media. Users are more likely to scroll down without reading a post, which does not have a visual. Avoid posting stock photos, put the most important offer details in the picture, to make it unique and valuable at the same time.
If you are listed on Google My Business, your hotel is displayed in Google search results and in Google Maps. Run a promotion on your Google business listing to attract more guests.
To do this, find the "Posts" tab in your GMB dashboard. From there you can create an "Offer" or a "What’s new" post.
When creating "Offer" posts, you can set a timeframe. "What’s new" posts expire every seven days. If your special offer lasts longer than that, regularly repost it.
If it is tricky to qualify, you might even post some FAQs on your special offer in the Q&A section of your GMB account.
If you set up Google Ads, Google displays your offer when people search for an accommodation in your area. We already described how you can benefit from contextual ads on our blog.
There are two ways to highlight your promotion on Google Ads:
In both cases, ads are mobile-friendly, and you are charged for clicks. Promotion extensions are more adjusted for special offers: you can run campaigns for certain occasions and add all the necessary offer details.
Global SMS open rate is 73%, which makes SMS campaigns reach great number of clients.
The length of one SMS in English is 140-160 characters. Make your message shorter, and use URL Shorteners to fit the booking link.
SMS marketing is typically more expensive than email marketing. Instead, you may use instant messengers. The most popular instant messaging channels are Viber, WhatsApp, Telegram. Choose the one that your target audience uses the most.
Call repeat customers. They are likely to be interested in booking a room in the hotel they already frequent at a lower price. It is best to make calls right from the CRM system of your choice.
Call those, who booked indirectly. Tell them about special offers on the phone to build the relationship. Even if they do not book after your call, this will increase customer loyalty, and these guests will be likely to book directly on your website next time.
- Give clear offer details: who qualifies, what to do to qualify, promotion period, discount rate or another customer benefit.
- Provide your clients with the booking link on every marketing channel mentioned above.