If you are responsible for marketing a hotel, you will understand that travel content marketing is crucial for online success.
Every word a potential guest reads about you, whether it’s on your website, on social media, in a brochure or an advert, will help them decide whether or not they would like to stay.
The advantage of content marketing for hotels is the ability to showcase your brand across a host of online touchpoints. Whether it’s through your website, social media platforms or email marketing, as a hotel content creator, you can encourage audience engagement, assess how people react to your brand and convert readers into active customers.
As you grow your hotel brand visibility and engagement, remember that it’s not simply about attracting attention. You also need to set clear goals and expectations for your engagement, to make sure you’re reaching the audience you want and standing out from the crowd.
You must persuade your audience why your brand is desirable and why they should spend money and time at your hotel.
So, what is engagement?
Engagement refers to specific actions that your audience might take with your content. Commenting, liking and sharing, or any other form of interaction, all count as types of engagement.
Measuring engagement is a key part of your content strategy, as it tells you if your content is resonating with the audience. Not only that, but you can identify the types of content that lead to the highest levels of engagement.
There are many key performance indicators that you can track. Some of the principal metrics for a website include time on page, which tells you how long a user spends on each page of your site, and bounce rate, which informs you about the proportion of people who leave your website without interacting. When it comes to social media, the number of social shares and comments, which indicates how many people directly interact with your content.
Why do you need it?
An established hotel brand online requires engagement. There is intense competition in the travel industry, with pressure on brands to stand out from the crowd and create lasting impressions. Word of mouth is a key part of your marketing strategy. When customers share positive experiences with friends and family, they create new connections for your brand.
As a travel brand, you’re selling an experience, which is why fostering a positive reputation among potential customers is so important. You don’t have a service or product to demonstrate, so your customers and their brand stories become key factors in your marketing.
You need to make audiences feel like they can be part of the experience if they buy into what you offer. Travel is ultimately a luxury item, but it can also be beneficial for health and general wellbeing. People need to believe that your brand will have a positive impact on their lives before they buy.
How to increase engagement
You might already be on the right track to improving your hotel content marketing, which means you don’t have to completely overhaul your approach. But here are a few strategic ways you can ensure you enhance your engagement.
Know your audience
You can only serve your customers by knowing who they are. Identify the people that your hotel brand wants to attract, down to demographic details like age, gender, location and occupation. This will help you determine what your customers’ values are, what they enjoy doing in their free time, and what their lifestyle is like.
To do this, you must consider the people that your brand most appeals to, through market research and assessing your brand against the competition. If you find more than one type of customer, you can break down your analysis into different profiles and market segments for greater depth.
This research will help you understand your target audience on a deeper level and create content that is appropriately aimed at them. You might even find untapped, niche markets to explore, or identify future opportunities for your business to grow into.
Establish your brand
Building on strong foundations is essential. That’s why you must ensure that you have a well-crafted and strong brand identity before focusing just on your marketing.
The research into your target audience and an introspective look into what makes your brand tick help you better understand what sets your hotel apart from the rest and the unique strengths you have. Then you can communicate your message more effectively.
Take a look at your competitors is useful, at other top hotel website content examples and really dig into your industry niche to see how you can do things better than the competition.
Consider everything from your brand tone of voice to your identity, including details such as logos, colours and fonts. Each of these needs to be working hard to communicate the experience you offer potential guests.
Creating an engaging brand story will also tap into customer emotions and offer a compelling reason for them to buy from you. A memorable brand story can help spread your brand by word of mouth promotion too.
In all aspects of your business, your mission, vision and core values will influence how you communicate with your target audience and will infuse all your communications with purpose.
Enhance your website content
For many guests, your website will be the first point of contact for your brand. This means it’s vital to create a positive first impression.
You’ll want a site that is well-designed and attractive, as well as functional. Ask yourself, can someone visiting for the first time find their way around? How many clicks do they have to make before they can book a room? This all counts as user experience (UX) and you want that experience to be positive.
When it comes to content, keep things simple and concise. Don’t write essays. Small, helpful paragraphs that help immerse your reader in the experience of the hotel are best. Each page should have a clear purpose, with nice headers to guide the reader and a clear call to action.
SEO research is also important. By finding the keywords your target audience uses to plan their holiday, you can integrate them into your content to help rank your site in search engine results.
Long-tail keywords are great for helping rank your site and also bringing the right type of customer to your site. They are longer, more specific phrases that represent a niche within your industry. It’s likely that they will have a lower search volume than short keywords, but generally they have lower competition too. So you have a chance to stand out. For example: ‘luxury hotel Madrid’ brings up a lot of competition, but if you were to use ‘five-star heritage hotel Madrid’, you have the chance to attract more specific audiences.
It can be tempting to try and be on every social media platform, but realistically, keeping up with them all in an effective way is hard. So it’s worth focusing in on just the ones that will work for you. Remember, it’s important to be where your target audience is, so research where they spend their time.
Images and video content are very influential when marketing travel, so you might want to consider showcasing the luxury and unique features of your hotel on platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube and TikTok.
A platform like LinkedIn is more focused on B2B audiences, so will be less useful for your hotel brand unless you’re looking to connect with tour operators or tourist boards. X, formerly known as Twitter, is another one that is useful, but may not be a top priority if you’re running your own social media channel.
Looking for hotel social media post ideas? One of the best ways to ensure you don’t run out of inspiration is to create a calendar with the posts mapped out in advance. Look for inspiration in the news and trade magazines, important dates throughout the year, updates you’d like to share about your hotel and special offers etc.
Then, intersperse them with nice imagery and a focus on the experience, so people can really get a sense of what you offer. And don’t forget to repost user-generated content, that’s a great one to ensure engagement and to work as social proof, showing audiences that other people are enjoying your hotel. A clear social media strategy also needs defined goals. So set yourself some key performance indicators (KPIs) as well as a roadmap to reach them. It’s not enough to dream up a number of likes or shares you’d like to see. Set small goals and work towards theme through regular posting and interactions.
Create useful content
A large part of establishing your brand’s value in hotel content marketing is to create content that is genuinely useful, imparting great local tips and new information to customers.
This helps your hotel become an authority in the areas where you operate. People looking for travel guides or top tips as they research their trip will come across your content and may consider booking with you too.
Blogs are an inexpensive way to produce fresh content regularly, give guests an insight into your hotel, direct users to other aspects of your business and apply keywords to help improve your search engine rankings.
With a constant rate of renewal, blogs keep the flow of content moving, which search engines love, and you can always re-use and repackage your most successful pieces of content in different formats. Consider using top tips in your marketing emails. Tease the posts on social media. There are so many options.
The longevity of content you produce in blogs can vary greatly, from evergreen content that lasts for a long time, to time-sensitive news, brand updates, seasonal offers, and promotions. This makes blogs a particularly adaptable format and a way for you to talk directly to your guests.
Create connections, boost bookings
Generating high engagement through useful hotel content writing, a strong social media presence, an engaging and memorable website, and a strong brand identity backed by a good understanding of your audience will help you convert potential leads into paying customers.
After a customer has stayed at the hotel and their first transaction with your brand is complete, you can follow up to get feedback and add the friendly touch of a personalised thank you via email or social media.
Their feedback is essential to keep things moving, as reviews and testimonials are so important in establishing a brand’s reputation. In travel, prospective customers value the recommendations of their peers highly.
You can harness that by aligning your hotel brand with positive feedback. You might even create a lasting impression on the customer for a second stay at your property, expanding that loyal customer base even further.
At Contese Agency, we specialise in content marketing for hotels. From travel content writing services to SEO research, social media to website design and development, we’ll help you grow your hotel brand. Our services are refined by years of experience and expertise collaborating with some of the world’s most prominent and successful travel brands like IKOs resorts.