Best Practices in Email Marketing

By Steve Morse General Manager, Travel & Hospitality, ClickSquared | January 27, 2012

One of the things that hospitality marketers got "right" before many other industries is the practice of maintaining wonderfully detailed customer records and databases. The problem, however, is many hospitality marketers still haven't learned to use email marketing to its full capacity and they continue to rely primarily on ad hoc email campaigns and direct mail to reach their audiences. By doing so, they completely fail to use the great data they have while it's still fresh, leading to disappointing results. To succeed in today's environment, hospitality companies must do a better job of putting their data to work in real-time, delivering messages that are timely and personally relevant to the recipient. The good news is these programs are far easier to achieve than most people think due to advances in technology and online communicability.

With the growth of the online channel, email has become the central nervous system for driving interactive customer relationship marketing. It enables a current and relevant flow of information between a company and its customers, with an ability to react quickly to changes in customer data and behavior, and spur parties to action when appropriate. Effective email marketing relies on a constant data feed for successful communication and outcome. But how can marketers best leverage this channel? And more importantly, how can they do it in a way that is efficient and cost-effective?

Driving Costs Down and Customer Engagement Up

Fortunately, communicating effectively with customers doesn't mean breaking the bank. As most marketers have come to realize, email marketing is a great way to keep costs down, while still allowing you to communicate with your customers on a regular basis. While the cost of traditional direct mail continues to increase, email provides a low-cost alternative with near infinite scaling capabilities.

In addition to the cost savings, email serves as the timeliest way to reach the majority of consumers and allows for instant results. Instead of marketers waiting for a response from a mailer, email provides immediate feedback on the effectiveness of your messages. This makes it easy for hospitality marketers to send compelling, personalized messages that engage guests and prospects and allows them to immediately access and act upon the email before the window of opportunity has closed.

Email marketing also provides hospitality marketers a way to easily segment and test communications in real-time based on inbound response rates. Marketers can easily analyze how people respond and quickly create small test programs that develop into larger campaigns based on the success of those initial trial communications. Minor tweaks and/or adjustments to the existing campaigns allow you to continually narrow your focus and help you communicate to the right people, at the right time.

Choose a Social Network!

The social network you are looking for is not available.

Close

Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Gino Engels
David Chitlik
Simon Hudson
Ryan Day
Arturo Garcia Rosa
Brenda Fields
Laurence Bernstein
Scott Acton
Paul van Meerendonk
Ryan Day
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.