Budget planning season is upon us. Instead of viewing it with dread, SkyTouch Technology, a cloud hotel PMS provider, has compiled tips to help hoteliers approach their budgeting as an opportunity to further ROI. That is, as long as next year’s budget addresses the following three critical areas of digital marketing, which we consider “must-have” line items to help hoteliers raise the profile of their respective brands in 2015:
Responsive website design (aka, easy access to your hotel brand). A user’s experience with your website will strongly dictate how positively or negatively they view your hotel brand. Is your site easy to navigate? Is the content up-to-date? Most importantly, can content be easily accessed across any platform or device? Today’s mobile customer researches and books on-the-go and they demand a seamless experience. Ensure you can deliver this by making responsive, mobile-optimized website design part of your 2015 budget. In addition, recognize that your customers are being bombarded with messages from competing brands. Allocate dollars toward optimized content and a searchable web presence that includes Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Search Engine Marketing (SEM), and Pay Per Click (PPC). These tools will help ensure that you are “heard” in a noisy online marketplace.
Online reputation management. Are you “listening” to what others are saying online about your brand? How often are you monitoring review sites such as TripAdvisor, Booking.com, and others? Are you promptly responding to comments posted about your hotel on review sites and social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter? A strong online presence featuring quick response time is vital to maintaining your brand’s reputation… and preventing any issues “aired” online from quickly going viral or escalating into full-blown crises. Every hotelier’s 2015 budget should include increased resources toward online reputation management with the ability to actively listen and respond quickly to customer inquiries, issues, and feedback.
Integrated digital approach. We operate in a fast-paced marketplace with device-toting customers who expect instant access to our brand. Meeting their “real time” expectations is a must for survival within the highly competitive hospitality marketplace. Therefore, hoteliers must realize that digital marketing should work in concert with other business strategies, particularly real-time availability and pricing. By taking an integrated marketing/management approach, hotels can meet traveler’s demands for up-to-the-minute information and immediately respond to changing market conditions. As such, every hotel manager’s budget should allocate dollars toward a full-featured, cloud hotel PMS. The SkyTouch Technology Hotel OS®, for example, gives hotel managers easy access to dynamic price marketing, reports, and other centralized tools that enable them to manage “on-the-go” from anywhere with an internet connection.
By budgeting and addressing these key digital spending areas, hoteliers will equip themselves with a strong online presence that will enhance the vitality of their brand in 2015 and beyond.by