Email Reigns as King of Marketing Tactics

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Email Reigns as King of Marketing Tactics

By Sam Trotter, Corporate Brand Strategist, Charlestowne Hotels - 08/09/2017
Sam Trotter
Sam Trotter

When it comes to hotel marketing strategies, email remains an effective tool and a fairly inexpensive one at that! Charlestowne Hotels (www.CharlestowneHotels.com) sees a healthy open rate of about 20 percent, with 6 percent visiting the website. Those percentages translate to impactful revenues, and that success is the result of some best practices outlined here. 

1. Invest in a quality CRM

A great CRM (customer relationship management) system is an asset, especially one that will connect directly to the PMS (property management systems) and can be fully integrated into the website. A good CRM can customize automated emails with the brand’s colors and photography, which then become an opportunity to communicate further with guests to  market products or services. Use this opportunity to mention the hotel’s restaurant or spa and invite guests to book these services at the point of confirmation. 

Prior to the stay, a welcome email can offer an upgrade opportunity. Look at hotel data to determine upsell opportunities. If Sunday check-ins are usually quiet, sell late check-outs on an automated basis. The CRM can also manage audiences. For email marketing to be effective, campaigns must be sent to the appropriate customers. A parking package offer should only be sent to guests in drive-markets as they’re the most likely to appreciate and use this offer.  

2. Stay on message & reflect branding

Keep emails simple and to the point while staying on message to reflect the  brand. Tell guests what you are trying to communicate by providing photos that back up the experience — and provide a clear call to action. An effective call to action will immediately direct visitors to a landing page, which is housed on the website and specific to the email campaign at hand. Use the landing page for other campaigns you might be pushing. Advertise the same offer on your Convention & Visitors Bureau’s  website by directing visitors to the landing page for more information. 

3. Subject lines matter

Data will be your best friend for subject lines, as it will help you figure out what does and doesn’t work. Look at the data to determine key open drivers: Do you use the guest’s first name? Do you mention the percentage discount in the subject line? Marketing companies are constantly conducting research on subject lines that receive the most opens. Likewise, your marketing partners will often send out surveys to clients to gauge success or failure of subject lines.

4. Don’t forget mobile

A majority of email opens happen via handheld device. If emails aren’t designed for mobile, you could be losing out on up to 60 percent of opens. It’s equally important to offer click-to-call technology. Many people don’t like to enter credit card information on mobile, so having an easy way to call will help to capture direct bookings.

Who inspires you?
Alphabet (FKA Google) and SpaceX. These two organizations work towards goals beyond improving year over year percentages; they are looking to reshape humanity in a
way that will impact generations to come.

What are your hobbies?
If you can paddle on it, I love it.

What technologies excite you?
Machine learning. This has an incredible potential to eliminate millions of white collar jobs, yet improve the efficiency of the economy. The prospect is both terrifying and exciting.

Sage Advice:
Dedicating adequate thought and leadership to the marketing of your asset is pivotal to its success; otherwise, you risk the demise of your multi-million dollar asset.

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