Every hotelier is looking for ways to maximize their occupancy and stand out from the competition. While there are countless hotel marketing tips to help accomplish these goals, they’re all grounded in one reality: to effectively engage your audience online, you must understand who they are and what they value.
Why is it important to understand your audience? Imagine you’ve just upgraded your pool area to include top-quality cabanas, and you want to spread the word online. You could talk about the VIP experience and trendy new spaces for special events – but if your guests are generally more family-oriented, your campaign will miss the mark.
Understanding the 6 Main Vacation Traveler Categories
For just a moment, forget about all the hotel marketing tips you may be considering. Think about your guests and see which of the following categories describes them best.
The Value Seeker – For the travelers who want to get the most out of their trip, “Value Seekers” often put experiences above accommodations. They tend to be younger (in the Millennial Generation), have a mid-range income, and may be bringing their young children along for the trip. They’re heavily reliant on review sites to make sure they’re choosing a property and destination that addresses their needs, and they’re most likely doing that research on their mobile device. This group responds well to value-add messaging.
The Luxury Traveler – For the travelers who want their vacation to be both effortless and exquisite, “Luxury Travelers” are willing to spend more for a top-quality stay. This group tends to be in the 35-54 age range and often travel as a couple (although not always, of course). They’re enjoyment focused, and they’re willing to pay for it – especially in warm and/or coastal urban destinations where culture, nightlife, and relaxation are all at their fingertips. Focus on quality-focused messaging to connect with this group, like a VIP cabana rental for an indulgent day by the pool.
The Social Butterfly – For the travelers who are focused on sharing their experiences and engaging others, “Social Butterflies” often travel with groups of friends and family. If they’re traveling as an individual or couple, they’re more drawn to properties and destinations that offer group activities – such as tours and cruises. While this category is harder to identify by demographics (especially by age), they generally have mid to high-range income. Social Butterflies put a lot of faith in word-of-mouth recommendations, and they’re most likely to become repeat guests when they find a property that addresses everyone’s needs. These guests are likely to appreciate messaging that simplifies group logistics, highlights entertainment, and makes them look good to their friends.
The Independent Adventurer – For the travelers who want complete control over their trip, “Independent Adventurers” are most likely to travel alone or in pairs. These guests are drawn to unique experiences and exposure to new cultures, so they’re more likely to visit properties that are ‘off the beaten path’ and to avoid peak tourist season. Interestingly, this category is generally made up of low-income earners and high-income earners, but they’re most often a younger demographic (under 35). To engage this group, leverage social media and digital marketing to share your property’s distinctive story.
The Researcher – For travelers who want to know exactly what to expect, “Researchers” put a great deal of work into weighing the options when it comes to destinations, properties, dining, and activities. This is the group that will book dinner reservations, cabana rentals, tours, spa treatments, etc., long before they arrive on-site. Because of the effort they put into planning and the countless hours on travel review sites, Researchers are the most likely to be disappointed if your property’s digital presentation doesn’t align with the real experience.
The Habitual Visitor – For travelers who want simplicity and convenience, “Habitual Visitors” are the most loyal kind of guest. When they find a place they like, they have no problem returning again and again. Often in the 35 to 64 age group, these guests value relaxation above activities. To really entice this category of traveler back again, consider using post-trip emails to offer loyalty perks, such as a free cabana rental, during their next visit.
From all the hotel marketing tips we’ve explored while helping our clients maximize their businesses, we know that understanding your audience is the most important. To learn about targeting corporate clientele, read our post: How to Attract Business Travelers.
Keep Exploring Valuable Hotel Marketing Tips with Resort Cabanas
At Resort Cabanas (a division of Eide Industries, Inc.), we specialize in designing, manufacturing, and engineering custom commercial cabanas and pre-engineered options. With almost 80 years of extensive design, construction, metal fabrication, industrial sewing, and installation experience, we are proud to offer the highest quality products possible, made right here in the U.S.