What it Takes to Make Your Hotel's Emails Worth Opening

By Junvi Ola Principal, Hospitality Content Studio | April 29, 2012

Today, people live in a cluttered email box world. But despite the challenges in overcoming spam and competing with loads of other marketing messages landing in inboxes everyday, email marketing remains one of the most powerful direct-to-consumer marketing tools that hotels can employ. Through consistent email marketing, hoteliers can deepen their relationship with past guests, entice new ones and achieve a strong advantage over their comp set. Plus, the right mix of content can increase sales and convert the reader into a hotel guest now or in the future. How can this be achieved? Here are my 7 copywriting rules to follow to ensure your hotel's carefully crafted email is noticed, opened and read.

Headlines Matter

Take a hint from journalists, they're masters of getting their content read. The secret? It's all in the headline. Your customers will decide in a few seconds, or even less, if your email is worth their attention. People are quick at deleting messages. So, if your subject line doesn't instantly attract, you've missed your chance and you'll end up in the trash bin.

Keep your subject line short. The sweet spot for most email providers is 40-45 characters before they are cut off. Plus, the headline should be attention-grabbing, action-oriented, and peak enough curiosity to lure customers to find out what's inside.

When I'm writing email newsletters for clients, I put every headline through a simple four-step review. I ask myself:

  1. Is it URGENT? Will a reader feel like they need to read this email at this very moment?

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Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.