Having a detailed plan is essential for the success of any marketing campaign, especially in the highly competitive hotel industry. While putting one together can be tedious, it will help your organization stay on track and achieve goals. Creating a sample hotel marketing plan can help you make a plan tailored to your hotel’s needs.
Start with Your Vision, Mission and Market
Your long-term vision and short-term mission should guide everything you do. If you don’t already have mission and vision statements, take some time to develop them, and then let them guide your marketing plan. Any marketing plan for hotel examples should start with compiling and analyzing a lot of data around your hotel. To target that marketing plan, you can start by understanding the main variables affecting your hotel through the five C’s of marketing:
The five C’s give you a broad overview of your market, so once that’s done, you can look internally with a SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for:
Once both analyses are complete, you will have a firm understanding of your position in the hotel market, both quantitatively and qualitatively. You can use this position to inform the direction you should go to meet your mission and vision.
Compile Data, Analyze Pricing, Target Your Market
Now it’s time to get into hard numbers. Bring in your accounting team and heads of departments. Start with historical data for at least the last two years. Analyze such factors as average room rate, occupancy, rooms available to rooms sold, and RevPAR. You want to get a clear picture of bookings, how those relate to revenue, and missed opportunities. Now that you have this data, you can analyze your pricing in the past and begin to develop an effective pricing strategy. Pricing is intricately tied to market segmentation.
Market segmentation involves catering your offerings to a particular segment of the consumer base. Knowing what kind of hotel you are and who you’re trying to attract helps direct the rest of your marketing plan. Some examples of market segments include:
· High-end customers seeking luxury
· Hosting meetings and conference attendees
· Vacationing families
· Long-term guests
Identifying and catering to your target market is vital when creating an effective marketing plan. As you understand your market segment, you can develop a guest profile. Who stays at your hotel, and what are their wants and needs? How do you meet those, and how can you improve? Are you missing opportunities?
Set Clear Marketing Objectives and SMART Goals
It may seem like it took a long time to get to the actual marketing plan, but analyzing all of the elements will effectively guide your decisions. With that data, your next step is to identify your marketing objectives. These are the big-picture end goals you want your marketing plan to achieve. Some examples might include:
· Booking more events, like conferences and weddings
· Increasing loyalty and repeat customers
· Improving your service and reputation
With those clear objectives in mind, you can set SMART goals for smaller parts of your plan that are more easily achievable. By forming SMART goals, you can take more incremental steps in your marketing plan. SMART goals are:
Identify Marketing Channels and Set a Budget
You should do both of these things at the same time. It may seem counter-intuitive to wait until now to set a budget, but you want to be sure that it can accommodate your capabilities, needs, and goals. As you work on a budget, decide which marketing channels you’ll need and develop specific plans (using SMART goals) for each. If your hotel doesn’t have an internal marketing team, you may need to consider hiring a firm to help with these steps. The most common marketing channels include:
· Social media
· Email marketing
· Print advertisements
· Public relations
Now that your plan has been established, you should compile the details into a sample hotel marketing plan and work toward implementing your marketing tactics and developing methods for monitoring their efficacy. After all, it doesn’t make sense to do all this work without seeing if it pays off.
Want more advice on travel and travel marketing? Check out these FREE resources: