Multichannel campaigns are one of the most effective ways to boost direct bookings, build one-to-one relationships with current and future guests, and ultimately, encourage repeat guests throughout the customer lifecycle.
According to Google, the travel planning journey is influenced by over 19 different touchpoints. While we have big-picture insight and data points that reveal the extensiveness of the travel planning journey, the path to a booking and the micro-moments along the way vary and key customer segments need to be reached through multichannel marketing campaign efforts.
Why are multichannel campaigns so powerful? By effectively reaching potential guests in intent-rich micro-moments across channels and devices with one cohesive brand message, multichannel campaigns are a great strategy to shift distribution from the OTAs, drive ADR, increase length of stay, capture a new segment, and achieve returns as high as 2,500%.
If you are ready to get started and increase direct bookings, you can begin building your multichannel campaign by answering the 5 W’s of any great narrative and any successful multichannel campaign: Who, What, When, Where, and Why.
Who: Use customer data, campaign insights, website analytics, and customer research to build a customer persona of your campaign’s target audience. It’s important to uncover both the emotional benefit and the functional benefit the target audience associates with your hotel brand and make sure this resonates in your marketing message.
What: Based on customer insights, craft the campaign message and brand narrative to reach the target segment with one cohesive message across channels and devices in key micro-moments.
When: Determine the best timing and campaign flight to effectively reach your target segment in the appropriate booking window.
Where: Map the path to purchase and determine the right marketing mix to reach the target segment throughout every touch point of the travel planning journey.
Why: Clearly determine the goals the campaign is trying to achieve in both performance metrics and positioning in the mind of the consumer.
Now that we’ve covered the basic infrastructure of multichannel campaigns, read on to learn the top 10 best practices to jumpstart direct bookings through multichannel campaigns.
Ensure you have an adequate, flexible budget to launch multichannel campaigns
Every year hotel marketers face a number of business needs such as seasonality and occupancy needs, revenue management needs such as increasing length of stay and driving ADR, as well as general business objectives such as increasing group business, targeting a new customer segment, and lessening the dependency on the OTAs.
In order to successfully accomplish these goals and answer key business needs, it is important to reserve 15-25% of the overall digital marketing budget for multichannel campaigns. This portion of the budget should remain dynamic and flexible as the year progresses.
Be sure to properly allocate your budget to each campaign, mapping out seasonality, business needs, top target segments, and any other big-picture business goals that a multichannel campaign can achieve. When allocating budget across campaigns, we recommend a budget of at least $10,000 dollars with a two month minimum flight to ensure success.