Hotel Marketing Podcast: Episode 185 – How To Differentiate Your Hotel & Get A Leg Up On The Competition

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It’s not easy for a hotel to stand out against their competition. At the end of the day, you are providing a place to stay just like your competitor. While we know price is very important to guests, sometimes the perceived value (or actual added value) of the experience can be a deciding factor. This is why you need to offer something a little extra that will make a potential guest pick your hotel over the hotel next door. While many of these options will have some upfront cost associated with them, the additional stays you will get as a result of these offerings will almost always outweigh the cost. 

Be sure to share your suggestions for future episodes of the Hotel Marketing Podcast at FuelTravel.com/podcastsurvey.


Ideas To Differentiate Your Hotel

Arcade

  • Buy or rent gaming machines
  • Create an offer that gives free credits
    • This keeps guests in the arcade spending money. Could end up paying for itself

 

Rooftop

  • Do you have a rooftop you can transform and utilize?
  • We have had clients turn their hotel’s rooftop into a bar area
  • Typically offers spectacular views and a very unique atmosphere

 

Breakfast

  • An inexpensive food option
  • “Hotels in [city name] with free breakfast” often has a decent amount of search volume
  • Because we know guests are seeking this they will be more likely to choose your hotel over a hotel that doesn’t offer free breakfast.

 

Pet-Friendly

  • The entire hotel does not need to be pet-friendly. You could make a select few rooms pet friendly and still label yourself as a pet-friendly hotel. (1st floor. Right, Melissa?)
  • Fencing a small portion of unused outdoor space as a dog run is an option
  • Include a trash can and dog waste bags to keep the area clean
  • Partner with local groomers and specialty pet shops

 

Transform Under Utilized Space

  • Turn outdoor space into a fun space with outdoor games.
  • Service guests using these areas with F&B for incremental revenue
  • Create new indoor spaces like small offices & conference rooms.
  • You can even charge to use these spaces (hourly/daily) and also serve these guests F&B

 

Valet Parking

  • This is particularly important for hotels in cities with limited parking or paid parking

 

Upgraded Fitness Equipment & Experiences

  • Upgrade your hotel’s fitness room or include specialized equipment
  • We have clients that offer rooms with Peloton bikes & yoga mats and we know that guests have said they chose their hotel based on that
  • Others have brought in Influencer yoga instructors
  • This helps with social media exposure as well

 

Occasion Based Package Options

  • We have had clients create various packages that draw guests to their hotel for special occasions
  • Honeymoon packages can include a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries in the room
  • Bachelor/Bachelorette packages can include champagne/cigar & free shuttle service
  • Arena/Stadium packages can include shuttle service and inexpensive licensed team items (flags, foam footballs, coolers), free appetizer at hotel bar

 

Partnerships With Local Experiences/Attractions

  • Local hiking guides/bike rental companies/kayak & paddleboards/surf lessons
  • We even had a client use their pool for beginner SCUBA lessons
  • Also consider spas/golf courses/museums/etc.

 

Featuring The Property/Area’s History

  • Guests like to learn about an area when they visit
  • Offer a tour of the area that covers its history
  • If the property is older you can talk about famous guests/events/improvements that have happened over the lifetime of the property

Promoting Your Differentiator

Photography/Videography

  • Step 1 is getting great photography of your new offering to be used both on your website and throughout other channels

 

On Your Website

  • Depending on the differentiator it may deserve its own page
  • Homepage promo panel
  • List on amenities page

 

Social Media

  • Share your new offering with your followers
  • Facebook and Instagram tend to be the best platforms

 

Paid Advertising

  • List in your paid search ad copy
  • Include in your amenities Structured Snippet extension
    • If the new differentiator has its own page, you may also want to try a Sitelink extension
  • Display ads
    • Test different audiences (remarketing/interest based/in market)

 

OTA Listings/Google My Business/Local Listing Sites

  • Be sure your new offering is included in your property description and within the amenities sections
  • Include your photography of your new offering

 

Email Your Past Guests

  • Let previous guests know that you’ve upgraded your property
  • This should only increase the likelihood of a return stay

 

Let us hear what sets your hotel apart from the competition! If you utilize one of these tactics already, or have something else that drives guests to your property rather than your competitor’s property, we’d love to hear all about it. Send us an email at [email protected].

 

 

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In The Newsaroos:     

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Stat Of The Week:     

  • No stat this week, stay tuned for plenty of hotel marketing stats next week.

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Submit your questions and topic ideas on Twitter to @_travelboom or [email protected]

IN ADDITION TO THE PODCAST WE HAVE A BUNCH OF WHITEPAPERS AND STUDIES YOU CAN DOWNLOAD HERE

 

 

 

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