We have talked to a number of hotel owners and not surprisingly at this time of year some are already giving their establishments a makeover in preparation for next season.
So far I have been told about redecorating of bedrooms and dining rooms, new kitchen installations, renewing of laundry equipment, replacement of beds and complete renovation of eight bedrooms with addition of ensuite bathrooms. All of these makeovers are important to keep the quality levels up and to give the visitors to the hotels a better experience.
I asked the question of one of these renovations which was costing in excess of £50,000 ‘what is the plan to tell the guests about the changes and timeframe to get a return’?
I was surprised that the owner said he hadn’t planned to spend any money on marketing this as he had spent his limit on the refurbishment.
It is very important when you are spending such sums to keep a budget aside to ‘shout about it from the rooftops’ and spread the word over the Internet. Does the hotel owner think it’s good to sit and look at an empty reservation book and have nice clean rooms than spend part of the budget on marketing. I mentioned I thought it best he keep one room unchanged and spend that money on the marketing to fill the rooms and then he can finish the last room later.
Within a very short period we could set up an email marketing campaign to all the previous guests to tell them about the refurbishment and give them offers to be first to stay in the new rooms. This is one simple area we could extend it by 20 other activities all equally important.
The Internet is not going away and all hotel establishments should set an annual budget to push the boundaries and get the audience they need to sell to. We have been working with many hotels over the years to help them achieve as high an occupancy level as possible with set targets and growth plans year on year.
Invest in the marketing of your hotel, no point in sitting in a nicely decorated hotel with no visitors.