Saturday, August 24, 2019

Hotel Content Ideas That Turn Browsers Into Bookers

When you’re up against big brands and even bigger OTAs, it can be hard for your hotel website to stand out. For a potential guest, compelling content can mean the difference between “just browsing” and booking. So how do you come up with great hotel content ideas?

Consider whether your hotel website is knocking down the most common barriers to booking. Do your hotel room descriptions offer a compelling value proposition? How about a visitors’ guide to your destination? To help you attract (and ultimately, convert) your ideal guests, we rounded up lots of hotel content ideas along with the best examples below.


Highlight Your Destination & Local Experiences

Culinary travel, pop culture, and off-the-beaten-path recommendations are shaping experiential travel in 2019, according to the travel experts at Skift. When it comes to destination-focused hotel content ideas, think about curating the local experiences your guests would love if they booked your property.

CITYWIDE EVENTS

One of the best places to get hotel content ideas is your city’s annual event calendar. A “citywide” can be a professional conference, sporting event, cultural festival, music concert… anything that attracts a group of visitors, really!

If you know that people will be traveling to your destination to attend a citywide event, create a blog post or dedicated landing page for it. Think about what information would be most helpful to someone attending for the first time, like the Aqua Soleil Hotel’s Ultimate Coachella Survival Guide. Hotels can also consider providing context to major spiritual or cultural events, like Holiday Inn Resort Phuket does with their guide to Songkran Do’s and Don’ts.

Pay close attention to recurring citywides and plan to update your content periodically. This will ensure your page ranks well on Google and keeps working for you long after this year’s event has ended.

MAKE A LIST

One of the easiest ways to get started creating content for your hotel is to utilize this simple, popular format. Coming up with creative content ideas for your hotel can feel overwhelming, which is why we (and pretty much everyone else) love a good list. Lists are easy to read, understand, and share.

This content format works especially well when you want to position your property as a go-to resource for lots of local, reliable insights. Do you know where to find the best bagels in New York? Or how about ten unusual places in your town that tourists have never heard of? Where are the top bookshops, secret swimming spots, or craziest street eats? Think about what will be of the most interest to your guests and reach out to your hotel team for their input.


Content Ideas For Your Hotel’s Low Season

Many hotels and resorts struggle with marketing ideas for the off-season. How do you sell a beachfront property when the temperature drops? Or how about when the locals leave for vacation and the city feels completely empty? The content ideas below can help you get started marketing your hotel property during its low season.

SEASONAL PACKING GUIDE

Knowing that your hotel content needs to add value to prospective guests, a seasonal packing guide might be some of the most helpful information your hotel can provide! If weather or other seasonal factors are making potential bookers hesitate, address it head-on by showing them exactly what they need to prepare.

TELL THEM WHAT TO DO

We’ve already noted how local lists and travel itineraries are great ways to showcase your destination, but what about the off-season? Framing your content around specific need periods and times of low occupancy is a highly effective marketing tactic.

As the local expert on all things Your Destination, you can actually use content marketing to change the narrative when it comes to traditionally slow travel periods. For example, you’d think that no one wants to visit Bali during the rainy season, right? Well, the Colony Hotel lays out a number of great reasons why you might want to reconsider! Likewise, Marriott makes a compelling case for why many of their beach destinations are even better to visit in the off-season.


Useful Content Ideas For Guests Before They Arrive

Does your hotel website answer all of your guests’ burning questions? Stop them from opening yet another browser tab to Google your destination! Make sure you’re providing the necessary info they need to understand local transportation, cultural quirks, and more.

LANGUAGE CHEAT SHEET

Understanding a little bit of the local language can completely change a traveler’s experience. When you provide genuinely helpful content like a language guide, potential guests browsing your site can’t help but feel a sense of trust. Start with translating some of the following suggested phrases/greetings: “Hello!” “Thank you!” “Good morning/Good afternoon/good evening!” “How much does this cost?” and “Where is the nearest (train station/market/bathroom/etc.)”

PHOTOGRAPHY GUIDE

We know that people are using Instagram as a pocket travel guide. Google searches for “Instagram guide to (X Destination)” are also on the rise. You don’t need to be pro to enjoy sharing photos from your travels, so help guide guests to the most Insta-worthy local spots with a curated photography guide.

For inspiration, check out Ovolo Hotels’ Sydney For Social Media Lovers and find out Where to Snap the Hottest ‘Grams in Miami with Springhill Suites.


Content Ideas That Encourage Hotel Loyalty

Boosting your hotel’s online presence is not limited to merely attracting potential guests but must include continued engagement beyond check-out. Loyalty programs are an important component of any overall hotel marketing strategy. Try incorporating these easy content ideas to help nurture that loyalty and encourage guests to rave about your property.

SHOW OFF RECENT REVIEWS

Research shows that guest reviews do have an impact on hotel bookings. Encourage your guests to share their (hopefully glowing!) feedback on sites like TripAdvisor by mentioning it at check-out or during positive service interactions. Reviews from other guests are often the tipping point for other travelers in the decision-making phase of booking.

Using reviews in your content marketing can be done in many ways. Incorporate relevant testimonials about your wedding services on your Weddings & Events landing page, or try rotating recent 5-star reviews into your monthly email newsletter. Keep a close eye on recurring trends in your guest reviews as you could also find inspiration for future content ideas!

USE USER-GENERATED CONTENT

UGC (User-Generated Content) can be a little tricky to navigate sometimes but is still worth exploring. Your guests are actively sharing their experiences on social media — simply search your hotel’s geo-tag or official hashtag to find tons of user-generated content.

As a general best practice, if you’ve been tagged it’s perfectly OK (even encouraged) to engage! If their image and/or story is particularly compelling, reach out to the guest and ask their permission to share. If you have a hotel blog, consider making “guest stories” one of your ongoing content pillars.


Our final takeaway? Know your guest. Understand why they may be traveling to your destination and use these hotel content ideas to create a compelling case for them to book your property.

Jennifer Zajachttps://fivestarcontent.co
Five Star Content is a boutique hotel marketing agency serving lodging and tourism clients around the globe. We can help your business get more direct bookings through strategic copywriting and engaging story-driven content. Founder Jennifer Zajac is an expert hotel copywriter and hotel content marketing specialist with a decade of experience, both on-property and as an independent consultant.

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