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Hotel marketing: what are its benefits?

Hotel marketing: what are its benefits?

Every commercialisation process is a marketing process, and this last word is used a lot nowadays, but few know what it is really about. Therefore, before going to the definition of hotel marketing, we must start with the definition of marketing. In this sense, marketing is often confused with sales and advertising campaigns. However, these […]

Every commercialisation process is a marketing process, and this last word is used a lot nowadays, but few know what it is really about. Therefore, before going to the definition of hotel marketing, we must start with the definition of marketing. In this sense, marketing is often confused with sales and advertising campaigns. However, these two aspects are only a small part of marketing. Nowadays, the word marketing goes beyond communicating and selling. Marketing is driven by the rationale of satisfying customer needs.

Therefore, if the marketer understands the needs of the consumer, develops products and services that provide superior value to the customer, prices, distributes and communicates these products and services effectively, he or she will sell these products.

So according to Kotler et al (2011) “marketing is the science and art of attracting, keeping and growing the number of profitable customers”. In the marketing process there are two fundamental factors to take into account: understanding the market and the needs of the customer.

Now, according to the above definition we could say, then, that hotel marketing is the science by which a hotel or tourist accommodation captures, maintains and grows the number of guests. It can also be defined as the application of a set of techniques that help to consolidate a hotel in the market.

On the other hand, hotel marketing has a profound relationship with what has been called service marketing, which “seeks the best way to satisfy needs and wants by exchanging an intangible satisfier for a generally tangible value in a mutually beneficial way”. In the case of hospitality, the intangible satisfier is the experiences the customer receives and the tangible satisfier is the money the accommodation receives.

 

Importance of hotel marketing

The tourism sector is one of the main industries in many countries. In Spain, tourism is the main economic engine, in 2019 it contributed 176,000 million euros, which represented 14.6% of the national GDP and also generated 2.8 million jobs. It is also one of the main economic activities in countries such as Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Peru, among others in Latin America.

In this sense, marketing has taken on an increasingly important role in tourism, and especially in the hospitality sector, since the latter is one of the two sectors that represent the activities we call tourism, the other sector being travel. Furthermore, according to Kotler et al (2011) referring to the restaurant sub-sector, he says that the “entry of giant companies into the hospitality market has transformed it from a paternalistic sector, where individual restaurant or hotel owners were the norm, to an industry dominated by chains. These chains operate in a highly competitive environment in which intensive marketing tools are needed to win customers”.

In this regard, in the hotel sector, large hotel chains have shown marketing prowess, which has resulted in a very competitive market environment. In response to this competitive phenomenon, independent owners must prepare themselves with marketing professionals to make their business competitive. In addition, they must keep in mind that, despite the strong competition from these large chains, an independent hotel with a good location, quality products and staff that caters to the needs of the guests, has good arguments to position itself in the market. But as we show, hotel marketing is key to this.

 

Digital marketing

Continuing with the theme of hotel marketing, it is necessary for independent hotel owners to understand that today’s technological innovation, especially in the digital realm, has changed the way marketing is done. This new reality has directly impacted traditional commerce, causing threats to those businesses that have not adapted to the changes, but it has also opened up many opportunities for new and small businesses.

According to a report by Statista in 2020, 90% of the world’s population admitted to shopping online, and it is estimated that 2021 and 2022 will be no different. Also, in 2022, smartphones accounted for 70 % of small business website visits and generated 63 % of all orders. The main reason why consumers buy a product or service over the internet is that there are no time or distance limits.

Consequently, the marketing that is now leading the way is that which is carried out via the internet, i.e. digital marketing. And this is defined as a social process by which companies satisfy people’s needs by creating, offering and freely marketing products and services on digital platforms and media. These digital media are websites, emails, social networks, search engines (Google, Yahoo and Bing), among others.

One of the main characteristics of digital marketing is its constant relationship with innovation and technological development, smartphones, the use of advertising, communication and public relations, the personalisation of information according to the user’s needs and its great capacity to reach many people.

Digital marketing is currently one of the main means for hotels to communicate directly and at the right time with users. So it is something that every owner and investor in the hotel industry should consider as a necessity.

 

The benefits of hotel digital marketing

In the current context of the hotel industry, digital marketing is a fundamental tool to understand the market, increase the visibility of the accommodation, attract users and improve their accommodation experiences. Online marketing is key, as it offers the advantage of reaching a more targeted group of users through their tastes and preferences. It also allows hotels to grow beyond local sales and reach a potential international market.

The main difference compared to traditional marketing is not only the fact that you can reach more people, but also that you can perform real-time analytics. For example, if your independent hotel runs a Google Adwords campaign, you will be able to know how many people clicked on the ad and how many got in touch as a result of the campaign. This is one of the great benefits of digital marketing, being able to measure the return on every coin invested, as well as having key information about potential users or customers.

On the other hand, hotel digital marketing is becoming increasingly important for independent hotels and for all types of accommodation because travellers are online all the time. When choosing to travel, people are influenced by posts on social media or digital platforms. They will also post photos of their experiences and comments on digital platforms, thus influencing others.

Therefore, if your hotel does not appear in Google searches, if it does not have an optimised website with attractive content and is not present on social networks with relevant publications, it will hardly be able to position itself and be competitive.

So digital marketing, no matter the size of your hotel, is fundamental for its commercialisation. That is why, in order to achieve the best results, it is advisable to count on the specialised advice of experts like IHCS.

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