By Margaret Mastrogiacomo, EVP of Strategy
With Cyber Monday and 2021 around the corner, it’s important to keep a pulse on the evolving digital landscape to elevate your digital strategy and maximize revenue.
This month, Microsoft Ads makes promotion extensions available in time for the holidays, leverage CRM to drive ancillary revenue, and Facebook adds new shopping audiences. From Search to Social Media and Design, here are the top 5 things you need to know now in hotel digital marketing.
1. Search: Microsoft Advertising rolls out promotion extensions.
Promotion extensions are now available for Microsoft Advertising accounts in the U.S. These are similar to Google Ads promotion extensions, including the ability to select from a list of events or occasions such as Christmas, Black Friday, or Cyber Monday. The promotion details and dates will also show in Microsoft Advertising text ads. You can set up promotion extensions at the account, campaign, or ad group level, and the landing page for your ads must include the promotion details, so be sure that’s in place before your promotion begins.
Hotel marketers should utilize the Cyber Monday promotion extensions on campaign ads to drive more traffic and conversions.
2. CRM: Leverage CRM to drive ancillary revenue and get personal.
With COVID-19 continuing to impact revenue, CRM is a great way to drive upsells through pre-arrival or in-stay emails to promote spa, dining, services, and upgrades not included in the original booking. RFM segmentation and personalization are critical to driving conversions. For example, if a hotel knows an upcoming guest is a high value RFM segment, the hotel can promote an upgrade to a suite in the pre-arrival email. If the hotel knows the guest previously engaged with spa campaigns, they can upsell spa as the main call-to-action. Overall, pre-arrival and in-stay emails should serve as a digital concierge providing guests critical information for their stay and personalized offers and recommendations to enhance the guest experience while driving incremental revenue.
3. Social Media: Facebook and Instagram launch new shopping audiences.
To further enhance Facebook and Instagram’s eCommerce capabilities, Facebook has rolled out new shopping audiences just in time for the holiday shopping season.
Shopping engagement custom audiences: This new type of audience targeting is aimed at helping marketers “reach people who’ve already shown interest in their product or brand by doing things like saving a product, viewing a shop, or initiating a purchase.”
Shopping lookalike audiences: As the name suggests, advertisers can expand their reach by targeting “shoppers” with similar interests as their existing customers on Facebook and Instagram.
This new feature is relevant for hotels that are merchandising hotel products on Instagram such as candles, bathrobes, or gift cards.
4. Display: Make every impression count with display imagery.
With travel demand continuing to ramp up, every impression counts when standing out against competitors. The right targeting with the wrong creative will make campaign performance fall flat. When strategizing Q4 display campaigns, hotels should ensure that campaign creative features lifestyle imagery with people that reflect the target segment, highlight USPs of the property (beachfront, pool, stunning views, etc), and include room photography where applicable. In HTML5 display, your final frame is the most critical as it will stay static after the rotation ends. Be sure to include the hotel logo, a clear offer, and strong call-to-action on the final frame with a compelling image that inspires. Keep animations subtle and let your imagery do the talking.
5. Design: Shadows, layers, & floating elements.
To add depth to your design, consider shadows, layers, and floating elements to visually engage website visitors. The key to experimenting with these design strategies is to play within your brand guidelines and see how you can push boundaries to create something emotive. For instance, overlapping images with a simple shadow may work well for a luxury brand, while exploring floating design touches may work well for an edgier brand.
Employee Spotlight: Sarah Sheppard, Senior Account Manager
NextGuest Announces the Release of the New Dorint Member Portal
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