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Advertising Your Lodging Property in 2023

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Advertising your lodging property in 2023

Competing against large hotel chains and OTAs with extensive marketing budgets can be intimidating for independent lodging businesses. To stand out online and attract travelers, you must develop creative and compelling ad campaigns and use them strategically. With demand expected to reach new heights in 2023 and travelers focusing on experiences, advertising can be a very effective way for hotels to reach their target audience and drive direct bookings.

Five benefits of hotel advertising

Advertising is a key component of a hotel’s marketing strategy, and a good campaign can benefit you in several ways, including:

1) Brand awareness

Advertising helps increase your visibility and brand awareness across different channels online. The more travelers consistently see your brand across the websites they visit, the more likely they’ll book with you when the need arises. Brand building takes time, and ‘always-on’ brand advertisements are crucial to developing a strong reputation.

2) Reach your target audience

Depending on your advertising channel of choice, you can target very niche audiences to develop better messaging that resonates with your ideal guest profile. The right message will increase engagement with your target audience and the likelihood of a booking.

3) Boost your reservations

By combining the right audience with the right message and strong brand recognition, your advertising efforts will build trust and relevancy to drive more reservations. To be most effective, your advertising campaigns should direct back to your website and booking engine.

4) Stand out from competitors

With many new hotel businesses opening and increased traveler demand, competition is fierce. Advertising is one of the best ways to communicate your property’s value and differentiating features. Ensure that your ads have a clear point of view so that travelers understand what’s different about staying with you versus properties in your compset.

5) Climbing to the top of search results

Organic marketing through search engine optimization (SEO) is important, but it requires a good deal of expertise, and it can take weeks, months, or even years to reach the top rankings. Paid advertising can help boost you to the top fast and rank for relevant keywords that drive bookings. Lodging operators should combine organic and paid search methods for a comprehensive marketing strategy.

Top channels to advertise on

Digital channels have become a key driver of sales in the hospitality industry, so much so that in 2022 over 68% of all sales in travel and tourism were made online.

These are the key channels to focus your advertising efforts on this year.

Google Ads

Google Ads and Google Hotel Ads are key advertising platforms for hoteliers. Over the past few years, Google has made considerable strides in its travel offerings, making it easy for hotels to list rooms directly through the platform to drive more direct bookings.

To create a Google Ad, you must create a Google Ad Manager account and build campaigns around specific keywords. Ensure you manage your budget effectively and craft compelling ad content that entices travelers to click. Start with long-tail keywords, which are specific, have less competition, and have more intent. An example of a long-tail keyword would be, ‘cool hostel with coworking space in Bangkok.’

Video ads

Video advertising can be intimidating for lodging operators, but you don’t need an extensive marketing budget to do it well! Relatable, low-production videos are in, so you can easily film clips showcasing your property’s amenities and rooms. In addition, you can utilize user-generated content filmed by guests, which viewers highly trust.

Advertisements featuring videos result in higher conversion than those without, making it a critical channel to focus on this year. Remember to film what makes your property unique and ensure that your brand voice is consistent.

Social media ads

If you’re not advertising on social media, it’s time to get on it. Social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok have extremely valuable targeting options based on location, gender, interests, behavior, and more to help you reach your ideal audience. Deciding who you want to target will help you narrow down the social media channels to advertise on.

Test different approaches, from what channel you’re on to the types of content you post (videos vs. static images). For travel enthusiasts, try Instagram, where many users find inspiration for their next trip. If you’re targeting Gen-Z, see if TikTok advertising might be a good fit for your property. Social media is always changing and requires advertisers to constantly test new strategies to see what works.

Retargeting ads

Retargeting ads use cookies from your hotel website to show ads to visitors who leave your site without taking action. They have a higher click-through rate than regular ads since the audience is at least somewhat familiar with your brand. Retargeting ads are crucial to stay top of mind and increase the likelihood that a traveler will return to your website to complete their booking.

When crafting your retargeting ads, ensure they have relevant and eye-catching imagery, calls to action that compel users to click, and headlines that communicate your value. Like all other ads, conduct tests and measure the results to see what is most effective.

How to create hotel advertisements that work

1. Identify your target audience

To create hotel advertisements that work, ensure you have clearly defined customer personas, as that will affect your messaging, channel, and creative design.

2. Figure out your advertising channels and budget

Once you know your audience, determine the online channels where you’ll find it, your budget, and your messaging. Consistently iterate on your advertisements until you find a method that works.

3. Maintain rate parity

Ensure rate parity across your online distribution channels, as these rates may be pulled into metasearch platforms, and travelers will most likely choose the cheapest option.

4. Monitor your performance and ROI

Keep a close eye on ad spend, clicks, and conversion rates to ensure you get the best ROI. Make sure you test different ad variations and constantly optimize them.

Final thoughts

Advertising can be an effective way to reach today’s digital travelers and drive more direct revenue. Trying different channels and analyzing what works best for you should be integral to your marketing strategy.

Rosalia Arias

Rosie is on the Product Marketing team at Cloudbeds. She is based in San Jose, Costa Rica, and has five years of experience in the hospitality ad-tech industry. When she isn’t working, Rosie can be found hiking, Latin dancing, and traveling to new places.

About CloudBeds

Cloudbeds is an award-winning, cloud-based hospitality management software seamlessly combines solutions for front desk, revenue management, distribution, guest acquisition, and guest engagement in a single unified system, enhanced by a marketplace of third-party integrations. The SaaS company creates modern, all-in-one hotel management software for hoteliers and hosts worldwide.

Posted by on February 27, 2023.

Categories: Sales and Marketing

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