Introduction to Affiliate Marketing

By Jennifer Nagy President, jlnpr | August 11, 2013

Affiliate marketing is a marketing tactic that many hotels overlook, either because they aren't aware of it as an option or because they don't see the value in it. Well, I'm here today to tell you all about why affiliate marketing is a great tactic to increase online traffic and bookings – and the best part is, you don't pay a dime until you see results.

What is affiliate marketing?

Just like your property's relationship with an OTA, affiliate marketing is a partnership between two companies, where the partner markets your property through a link or banner ad on their website. The partner (a.k.a. affiliate marketer) receives a predetermined commission based on the number of sales or clicks that originate from their site.

Sounds pretty simple right? It is.

Affiliate marketing is a great way for hotels to generate additional web traffic (and hopefully direct bookings!) with very little time or effort. And because there is no cost unless results are achieved, the ROI on this marketing channel will be high (if executed correctly).

How do I determine the specifics of my affiliate marketing program?

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Coming up in June 2019...

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.