“46.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home during the 4th of July holiday travel period.” (Source) Staggering… isn’t it! With stats on your side, hoteliers across America can really use this holiday to attract more guests and build their hotels’ brand. Wondering how you can boost last minute occupancy at your hotel for the upcoming Independence Day?
We’ve got you covered. You’ve probably already begun your email marketing campaigns and promotions and all that. But what most hotels don’t cater to are those travelers that decide to step out at the last minute. How do you make yourself more visible at the last minute, so you can run at full occupancy through this holiday? We’ll tell you how. Read on to learn 4 simple strategies that will help you do just that.
1. Give guests a Package they cannot refuse
Originality is the key here. Yes, most hotels offer packages and there’s nothing innovative about them. But the trick lies in making it as magical as you can for your guests. Be sure to offer something for everyone in your Independence Day package as families travelling together can be sure to have fun.
A great way to do this would be to include something special in your hotel package for veterans. You could either give them a complimentary stay for one night, or give away massive discounts to them, offer them complimentary meals all day, whatever suits you.
It is wise to consider the season as well while designing packages. Give this summer holiday a different twist, whether it is giving your guests all-day access to the pool, customizing food & beverage options, or even the outdoor activities. The objective is to design a package that your guests are not likely to find as easily elsewhere. Especially with last minute travelers, who search for places with the notion that the best deals are already gone! Surprise them and you’ll surely reap the benefits.
2. Make the holiday as holistic as you can
To make your guests’ stay with you a holistic holiday experience, you could include aspects of this occasion throughout their time with you. (But be subtle and classy with this, lest it comes across as cheesy.) Depending on where your property is located, you can take absolute advantage and entice locals and staff to participate in the celebrations. If you have a lawn big enough, host a barbeque party- this would be a great way for people to bond over and watch the fireworks. I’m pretty sure people are more likely to appreciate the fireworks in smaller groups than being lost in a large crowd, as is mostly the case! You could throw a rooftop party too for your guests, offering them cocktails and appetizers customized to the colors of the flag!
Keep kids engaged by organizing fun activities for them centered around this theme. This will not only give the families some amazing time together but will also be a great source of learning for the younger guests. Get creative with your execution and presentation.
3. Customize a hashtag and let it do all the talking
A couple of days before the event, make sure to start floating pictures from your last year’s celebrations on all social media platforms, with a common hashtag that is specific to your hotel. And request all guests staying with you this year, to participate in this and to use the hashtag in all their social media accounts. This is a great way to start trending your hotel property allowing last minute travelers to take note and approach you before any others! Hashtags are a fabulous way to market your property on social media and considering how social media is increasingly influencing people’s buying decisions, it is a great way to bring in more guests.
4. Create an experience that seeks to be multiplied
Increasing last minute occupancy for the fourth of July is one thing, and we’ve already discussed that. But if your idea is to create customer experiences which will in turn create future customers, you need to give your guests an experience they will remember for a long, long time. Keep “freedom” as your theme for the week, and plan everything around how you can realize this theme for your guests. By really focusing on your guests and their needs, you can inspire them to talk about you on review sites and on their social media platforms which in turn will generate more revenue for you in the long run. How? Because word-of-mouth marketing is still one of the most trusted ways by which customers discover brands and even more so in the hospitality industry!
We hope this helps you attract last minute travelers this fourth of July, and before we forget- have a fabulous Independence day!
May the fourth be with you!