Tip 2: The Message
Last week we discussed how to collate and manage a database and the need to keep it secure. Having good data is only any good if you are going to use it for good reasons. So decide on what you want to do with this information. Ideally you should use it generate revenue but you may want to use it purely to inform or educate.
Time and again, we see marketing for marketing’s sake. It’s almost like someone in the 10 o’clock meeting has suggested a marketing message and therefore something, anything has to go out. To quote a recent PM, no post is better than a bad post.
Marketing messages mostly have two fundamental reasons. First and foremost, they are designed to generate sales. Yes business. Marketing is for business generation. Not to get likes, not to go viral, not to show how wacky, quirky, woke, down-with-the-kids you are. It’s about making sales.
However the second fundamental reason is for engagement because without this you will lose your audience over time. Engagement is designed to keep people interested. It can simply be a great picture of a child messily eating ice cream or it can be something significant to the business such as an anniversary, new product or a bit of history. Something that gives your audience a reason to stay tuned.
Whatever the message, be confident and proud to tell your story with a great image. If it’s honest and interesting, people will enjoy it and keep coming back.
Business generation messaging should be something designed to give you incremental revenue. It may be a winter promotion, a special friends and family offer or simply reason to come and stay with you, eat with you or get a cheap back rub from you.
Note that it doesn’t always need to be discounted and focusing on your trough periods is always a good place to start. Keep your audience engaged. They already like you and they want to hear from you.
As mentioned, avoid running a special offer promotion all the time. Often business can be generated by simply reminding your clients that you’re there and that you’re thinking of them. Link the communication to BAR, a lead-in price. and keep it simple.
Unless you’re really focusing on TREVPAR try to avoid complicated packages. True you can hide the prices of the component parts but you also reduce the buyable audience. Note that your potential buying audience will always shrink with every add-on. Not everyone wants an open bus tour with a three course meal and a foot rub, but most people want a bedroom.
So just keep packaging dilution in mind and it will help you fine- tune any offer. If your motivation is to sell rooms in the low season then focus on selling rooms. If it’s increasing F&B spend in the high season then dynamic packaging (and REVMGNT restrictions) can be a better a way of achieving this.
Whatever you do though, try to add extra emphasis on your low seasons. Your high seasons don’t generally need help, you’re full anyway but your low seasons are where you make your money. As we say in London, have a good Q1 and the rest of the year takes care of itself.
When crafting good content try and keep your tone of voice consistent throughout the public domain. If you want to communicate informally with a light hearted tone – think Virgin Airlines – then apply this throughout. If you want a more formal tone then again make sure all of your public communication follows suit.
We’ll come onto how to write great content a little later but just be conscious of the importance of your written text. Get someone to double check it, then check it again. At Casa we have three copywrite filters and have someone whose main purpose is to write content, such is the value we place on this skill. And even we still make the occasional misteak!
The best times to send a marketing message are open to debate but have a play and you’ll note some trends on your engagement. Always put yourself in the shoes of the customer and think – when do I react to these emails or posts?
Friday payday is always a good time for people to think of spending money on pleasurable pursuits. A week before Mother’s day is great for those who have forgotten their nearest and dearest. Take note of your general lead-in times and what you want to achieve from the communication.
Next week we’ll be looking at the different media available. We’ll also be taking a look at content in a little more detail.