What if you’ve spent the first half of the year being so busy with all that is required to operate a hotel that you simply haven’t planned your summer hotel marketing activities?
Although working during the searing summer heat is pretty difficult in an industry as energetic as hospitality, this time of the year is perfect for increasing occupancy levels with some simple and effect hotel marketing tactics.
Don’t worry – in the fast-paced digital economy, last-minute hotel marketing is not only a common practice, but also a brilliant way to address unexpectedly quiet periods.
If your forecast report is a bit desolate, then here are five of our favorite summer hotel marketing tips:
- Staycations are all the rage
More than 50% of Americans are expected to shun vacations this year, but not because they can’t afford them.
More and more people are turning to “staycations” to take a break with the entire family, and your hotel could be the perfect destination.
Rather than thinking further afield, try marketing to potential guests in your neighborhood. Targeted Facebook campaigns and a focus on local SEO (speak to your marketing agency for help) might just put your hotel on the shortlist for many family staycations.
- Guest arrival enhancements
It’s hot, so think about what a weary traveler might appreciate upon arrival at your hotel.
An ice-cold welcome drink, wet towel or an exterior pop-up ice cream stall are little touches you can arrange at short notice and which might just create a bit of a stir on social media as guests do the legwork for you and tell the world their arrival was unexpectedly lovely.
- Customize your menu for the summer
If your restaurant’s menu hasn’t changed this year, then now is the time to make some summery tweaks.
Speak to your chef and ask him or her to create some light dishes (salads, soups, tapas – those kind of items), and increase your orders of fresh fruit and juices. You can do the same at the bar, by asking the bartender or manager in charge of the drinks menu to create some super-cool and refreshing cocktails.
- Make more of your grounds
If your hotel is blessed with decent-sized grounds, then make use of the space by adding games and activities in which your guests can indulge and make the most of the sun.
Schedule a weekly Cornhole Tourney and use social media to promote it. Have an unused grass area around the pool? Consider adding a Badminton or Bocce Ball court. These are a couple of super-trendy, fun, colorful and yet inexpensive ways to add some summer flare to your pool area. These are great additions you can mention online to tempt people to book directly with you this summer.
Likewise, if your hotel is situated near a national park or popular hiking route, then contact their management or the local tourist office to co-promote hotel packages that include guided tours of the surrounding beauty.
- Host some theme nights
It might be a little cliched, but guests still love to participate in a Hawaiian theme night, pool party or BBQ contest (invite a few local BBQ experts to compete for the best cook in town).
Theme nights of this kind work brilliantly during the summer, and with the hot weather encouraging a collective, happy mood all round, you’re guaranteed plenty of attendees.
Host a night or two that won’t be forgotten this summer – the effort will be worth it.
A final note
The summer is a magical time of the year, but you should never panic if you’ve waited until the last minute to capitalize on the warmer weather. Hotel marketing, sometimes, must be a little spontaneous – to be more successful!