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Digital Marketing

The millennial market offers plenty of opportunities for hotels to attract new customers with a passion for visiting an array of destinations. The younger generation is keen to spend disposable income on experiences rather than material goods and travel is a top priority.

With the right marketing strategy and customer service in place, hotels can improve how they’re viewed by millennial travellers.

Millennials aren’t only an important customer segment due to their size – they’re the biggest generation since the baby boomers – but due to their views, priorities and spending habits. For any hotel, taking steps to boost your millennial profile can have a significant impact on direct bookings and occupancy rates, given this is a section of the population that values travel.

While millennial income might be under pressure, how they choose to spend it is vastly different to previous generations. A study has shown that 72% of millennials prefer to spend money on experiences, whether it’s going out for a meal or heading to an undiscovered holiday spot, over products. Research from Mintel in 2016 also found that 23% of millennials spent more on travelling than they had in previous years, demonstrating a growing appetite for seeing more of the world. Being aware of this as you create your marketing hotel strategies for the year ahead could be the key to driving up direct bookings in the next 12 months.

If you haven’t already shifted your hotel offering to reflect millennial travellers, revaluating could prove a wise business move. But what are millennial travellers looking for when booking a hotel? Understanding what drives this customer group to make a booking could transform your business.

hotel-room

Getting social

More than eight in ten millennials check social media on a daily basis and they want to share their updates too. Instagram-worthy shots could be exactly what you need to encourage more bookings. That means going for bold design and standing out from the sea of other hotel rooms. It’s a move that can tie in with marketing hotel strategies too as potential guests increasingly turn to social media for holiday research and travel inspiration.

Give a local experience

Authentic experiences that reflect the local area are a core part of what millennials want from their travels. It’s a vital area to focus on to improve customer satisfaction, reviews, and repeat bookings. Having local guides to hand and staff that are encouraged to share their local knowledge with guests keen to discover hidden gems is a step in the right direction.

Create communal spaces

Linking with the demand for experiences, creating open, sociable spaces within your hotel can attract more bookings from millennials. Having an informal place where your guests can relax together  for example adds to the overall holiday style that millennial travellers seek. Hotel lobbies are the perfect place to start. Offer comfy seating, artwork, local books, and other activities for your guests to try their hand at during their stay. It’s also the perfect opportunity for staff to speak informally to guests gathering information to inform marketing hotel strategies and other business areas.

Utilise technology

Technology has transformed the hotel industry in the last decade but are using it to its full potential? In-room technology can be used to make stays more personalised and comfortable. Dedicated apps give you a chance to communicate and understand your travellers and tech can speed up processes. Putting technology in place appeals to the millennial generation, who has fully embraced the digital revolution.

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Digital Marketing

An effective online presence has never been more important to businesses in the travel sector. Today’s average traveller will extensively research and book their travel and accommodation with just a few taps of a screen. A few years ago, investing in a streamlined website that considered the user journey would have been enough. But in the fast-paced digital world where mobile devices rule, forward thinking hotels with an eye on growing reservations need their strategy to encompass much, much more.

For businesses to thrive, marketing hotel strategies need to place on the go online activity at the heart of their offering. Travellers today don’t only research destinations when they’re on the move, they book flights, read hotel reviews, and plan their holiday activities. To tap into the market of modern travellers, you need to match their enthusiasm for smartphones and tablets.

In 2016, UK adults spent more time on their mobiles than desktops for the first time ever, according to research from eMarketer. The average adult used their phone for 2 hours and 29 minutes each day, a rise of 11.8% on the previous year. With smartphones becoming more powerful, it’s a figure that’s set to continue rising.

It’s an area of growth that hotel marketing solutions need to consider from the outset to increase direct bookings. Results from a Google survey show that 31% of consumers who used a mobile for travel-related activities in the past month use their devices to search for travel information on a daily basis, demonstrating the opportunity you have to reach potential customers. What’s more, customers are willing to spend via mobile devices, with survey participants spending on average $299.50 in the previous 90 days.

But to entice travellers, marketing hotel strategies need to make the process simple, quick, and attractive. Did you know that 90% of travellers using mobile devices will switch to another site or app if it fails to meet their needs? You only have a small window to make a positive impression and convert users. Over half of mobile visitors will abandon a site if it takes longer than three second to load but the average travel website takes over ten seconds, losing a substantial amount of traffic.

With the shift towards mobile connectivity in mind, hotel websites need to be optimised and engaging for those customers. For some businesses, it could mean a change in the design and data used throughout their digital profile is necessary. There are some core areas that you should be utilising to improve your customer experience from mobile devices.

web-designing

Responsive design

Website that have responsive design will automatically configure to meet the requirements of the devices travellers are using. It’s a technical feature that means your customers are guaranteed the same experience and level of service whether they access your website via a laptop or smartphone.

SPAs

Single page applications (SPAs) can enhance the user experience without them having to pass through multiple pages, ideal for mobile use. These single HTML pages dynamically update as the user interacts with it, creating a fluid journey and eliminating the need to constantly reload pages.

Personalisation

With access to more information, you’re in a position to uniquely tailor the user journey, improving your conversion rate. Personalised experiences are a trend that travellers are coming to expect. When done right it can have a direct, positive impact on reservations, satisfaction, and repeat bookings.

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