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13 Hotel Email Marketing Ideas & Strategies

Social media advertising can sometimes be unpredictable, and the costs of running paid keyword search campaigns can be too high for smaller hotels, especially during peak seasons. However, email marketing is an affordable and effective way to promote your hotel and fill your rooms.

But there is a catch. Approximately 48.63% of all emails sent are identified as spam. Do you use the correct tools and email marketing strategy to ensure that you reach your audience?

By using a professional email marketing platform, you can deliver your targeted messages to the right client at the right time.

Email marketing campaigns for hotels are highly customizable. They allow you to promote your hotel, upsell and cross-sell rooms, and stay in touch with past guests. To help you make the most of your email marketing efforts, we’ve compiled thirteen winning ideas to increase your hotel’s revenue, promote your brand, and boost your occupancy rate all year round.

13 Winning Email Marketing Ideas for Hotels

email-marketing

Email marketing is far more exciting and flexible than just hitting ‘send’ on the occasional special offer and calling it a marketing email. You can drive income growth through promotional emails and relevant email marketing campaigns by getting to grips with two important concepts: segmentation and personalization.

Segmentation 

Segmentation means categorizing the people on your email database according to their shared characteristics. It’s the basis of isolating your appropriate target audience for successful hotel email marketing campaigns. For example, you can create a category for leisure travelers and then define them further by the type of room they booked, requests for services such as car hire and excursions, and even get down to the total amount spent during each visit.

Personalization 

As your booking system and newsletter signup list expand, you’ll get better access to more data. That will allow you to make each message more personal and meaningful to increase the chances of returning business.

Keeping these two concepts in mind, here’s our list of thirteen golden email marketing opportunities you should capitalize on this year.

1. Welcome New Subscribers

To increase the click-through rate, you can incorporate an introductory offer and more information about your location in the welcome email to new subscribers. This example is from The Venice V Hotel, a popular destination for sun-drenched beach holidays, cocktails, and fun parties.

  • A stunning aerial photograph emphasizes the location. Prospective visitors will instantly grasp that this hotel is at the heart of life and entertainment on the iconic Venice beachfront boardwalk and pier.  
  • Always tell recipients what their next steps should be. In this example, they clearly state that they are accepting reservations for their June opening and make it easy to do so with a “Book Now” button. 
  • They’ve added tantalizing references to adjacent world-famous landmarks, such as the Boardwalk, skate park, and pier, to encourage click-throughs to more exciting content. 

2. Exclusive Offers

Big hotel chains can afford to lower their rates, making it hard for smaller properties in the hotel industry to compete. Hotel email marketing is the perfect tool for smaller luxury hotels. Find an angle to address a small segment of your customers, then craft a winning exclusive offer to convince them to visit your small luxury hotel rather than the giant competitors.  

  • In this example, Maison Delano’s special offer leverages its luxury brand image to introduce newly restored suites. The classic elegance speaks for itself: it’s French, it offers cocooned luxury in Paris, and it’s exclusive. 
  • It’s better to run more intimate, focused promotions based on your hotel’s strengths. Maison Delano emphasizes its 18th-century historic architecture, which has been reimagined as modern luxury. 
  • Stunning photography speaks louder than words: in this example, Maison Delano used fewer than 60 words to specify the discount, room types, booking deadline, and discount code and also provided a click-to-book link.  

3. Abandoned Booking Reminders

When travelers abandon booking transactions, you can borrow this great tactic from TripAdvisor. This direct approach can remind them that forthcoming events may influence availability. 

  • In this example, the wording is calculated to make them feel like they’ll miss out if they don’t book instantly.  
  • Consider offering a free meal or a small discount to entice potential guests. In this example, Tripadvisor offers a cash-back deal on bookings via its Tripadvisor Plus loyalty program.   
  • This email also states the specific dates the guest viewed. This is an excellent opportunity to remind prospective guests that seasonal offers are time-sensitive. 

4. Pre-arrival Emails

A confirmation email should contain basic details like check-in and check-out dates, room type, and rate. However, the period between travelers making their booking and their arrival is a golden opportunity to upsell. Pre-arrival emails can showcase more expensive rooms, offer a special upgrade rate, or introduce your facilities. 

  • In this example, the Tradewinds Hotel promotes their restaurant by photographing the beautiful setting to boost income from ancillary income revenues. 
  • They demonstrate flexibility by mentioning various activities, from Game of Thrones trivia nights to business conference facilities.  
  • They present services crucial to high-level business and conference travelers via simple, compelling graphics in their pre-arrival emails.   

5. Post-stay Emails

Post-stay emails could unlock secrets about your hotel that you might never have learned if you hadn’t stayed in touch with guests after departure. In this example, the Warwick Denver Hotel solicits feedback and makes it easy to share a review via their app.  

  • Their email is short and to the point but encourages app downloads. 
  • Their message includes “thumbs-up” and “thumbs-down” icons, which makes sharing your views appear quick and easy. The easier it is for guests to share their views, the more likely they will give you feedback. 
  • The app can be used to solicit further bookings, offer discounts, or act as a feedback channel where guests can give kudos or raise concerns. 

6. Re-Engage Campaign 

Every mailing list contains people who inquire or sign up for a newsletter but never interact. Re-engagement is when you focus your email marketing efforts on reaching out to those slumbering leads to rekindle the relationship. 

  • In this example, Animoto asks whether you still want to hear from them. They don’t push too far or insist on a reason. Sometimes, people just lose interest. If you can’t pique their interest, it may be time to say goodbye and focus your efforts elsewhere.  
  • This message allows people to change their preferences. It’s an excellent way to identify dead-end contacts or past guests who have vanished and are cluttering your lists. 
  • Animoto used email marketing software to provide a no-nonsense unsubscribe or preference update experience. 

7. Event and Special Occasion Emails 

Are you hosting a prestigious conference or special event? In this example, Surety Hotel Des Moines has included seasonal details in its email marketing campaigns. This tactic creates brand awareness and is a fantastic opportunity to sell rooms and ancillary services to increase hotel revenue. 

  • They’re showcasing their calendar of events. If you can’t offer sufficient entertainment or activities yourself, you can partner with local businesses to keep guests busy and active. Examples include outings to local attractions, spa experiences, child-minding services, or even music and theater shows. 
  • Each activity on the calendar has a corresponding link. 
  • However, they’ve also used a “Plan your stay” button rather than the usual “Book Now” CTA. This button invites people to click and explore all the options.  

8. Location Newsletters

All hotels can use location newsletters as a marketing strategy. However, targeted messages can be a lifeline for smaller establishments in more remote areas. No matter how wonderful your establishment is, its charms may not be enough to lure visitors off the beaten track. 

  • In this example, Vacasa has some stellar ideas for using location newsletters as a hotel email marketing strategy. Vacasa is planning ahead to use some properties’ unique locations at a specific time in the annual stargazer calendar to lure a particular target group: stargazing enthusiasts. 
  • By mentioning the narrow eclipse viewing path and reminding guests to bring their eclipse viewing glasses, Vacasa is positioning itself as an authority in the field. 
  • The “Scout Out Your Stay” button entices the reader to learn more. 

9. Loyalty and Rewards Programs

Most hotel email marketing campaigns launch direct appeals to people’s purses with discounts, but smaller establishments may be disadvantaged. They have to be more resourceful. It is better to focus on building a guest loyalty program around your key strengths.  

  • Hotel Tonight uses a series of graphics and photos to highlight different aspects of its loyalty program. For example, there’s an indicator of how long the guest has been a member. This simple graphic illustration reminds the guest that you’re aware of their valued participation. It allows you to reward them for sticking around, using a discount offer for members who have been active for a certain period.  
  • They’re also using the opportunity to remind members that their next booking could push them to a more exclusive bracket. 
  • They’ve provided a quick link to getting started with the next booking. 

10. Last-Minute Deals

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Adapt your email campaigns by simply using different angles to sell the same product at different times of the year. For example, if you know there’s very little going on in town, pitch your last-minute special as a slow, relaxing retreat where guests can relieve daily pressures. However, if something exciting is happening in town, pitch your last-minute special as their last chance not to miss out. 

This example shows how Hotel June leverages seasonal changes to bring in guests throughout the year. A quick email marketing blitz when activity declines or during quieter times can help fill empty rooms during off-peak periods.  

  • Hotel June’s message celebrates mellow, relaxing late-summer getaways. Their time-limited offer conveys a sense of urgency and a fear of missing out (FOMO). 
  • They’ve added a clear call-to-action (CTA) that makes booking a room during a specific period easy. 
  • They mention various activities, such as dining, the pool, gym, or bike explorations, to make the venue attractive to a broad audience. You could add a sweetener, like free pre-dinner drinks or VIP access to your facilities. 

11. Local Area Guides

You could reap significant dividends by becoming an authority on local attractions and events. Leverage local partnerships with handy discount vouchers, quick-click preferential bookings, and package deals, like in this example. 

  • Sonder’s introductory email about their new Business Bay property lists a range of local activities and the means to book them in advance. 
  • They’ve included a voucher and discount code in this email to entice guests to book the services online. 
  • They’ve included a special discount offer and a clear CTA. 

12. Staycation Ideas 

It may seem radical, but providing people with staycation ideas in your email campaigns might increase your long-term profitability. Customers trust brands they perceive as excellent value for money, and your tips on how to spend less money on trips and relaxation might just convince them that you’re the best destination for budget-conscious travelers. 

  • In this example, HomeAway acknowledges that most people can’t just jump on a plane when they need a break. Nevertheless, people still need entertainment, so they offer exciting ideas for family arts and crafts projects. 
  • They’ve included links for glimpses of fantastic destinations for when people will be able to travel. In your hotel marketing emails, you can woo budget-conscious travelers by providing tips on when to book to get the best deals. 
  • Their email mentions a range of interests and activities. Remember that even if people can’t afford to stay over, their budget may stretch to attending local events, such as a special dinner at your hotel or a day trip to your swimming pool and spa. Ancillary service turnover may give your hotel a profitability edge.  

13. Testimonials

Testimonials and reviews tell prospective visitors how your guests experienced their stay. Ask your customers to leave reviews on third-party websites, such as Google Maps reviews. Include prominent links to your social media profiles to make it easy for guests to share their experiences and help you gather social proof.  

  • In this example, Sonder celebrates travelers’ choices and reminds recipients that satisfied hotel guests chose the top venues. 
  • They’re making it easy for guests to view the destinations and respond to the email campaign with just one or two clicks.  
  • Sonder also offers a small reward to guests who complete your survey to motivate them to participate, increasing email click-through rates. 

Hotel Email Marketing FAQs

Is Email Marketing Effective for Hotels?

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Email marketing has been around for many years. It is still regarded as the single hotel marketing strategy that provides the highest return on investment. Advances in data handling communication software have improved it even more. However, the key to a highly successful email marketing campaign is segmentation. 

By segmenting your audience, you can tailor your emails to address the specific interests and needs of each group of email subscribers on your list. It allows you to send different customer emails that address each one’s particular needs.  

For example, you can offer families child-friendly rates or special meals. You can also provide honeymooners with a romantic all-inclusive package. Similarly, you can provide business travelers with secure WiFi with a VPN auto-connect to ensure their company secrets or customer data remain safe during their business stay. Are VPNs worth it? Absolutely, especially when it comes to protecting sensitive information during travels. To further assist business travelers, you might include an eSIM comparison in your emails to help them choose the best option for staying connected internationally. 

What Is Email Marketing for Small Hotels?

Email marketing for hotels is a marketing technique that uses emails to connect businesses with potential customers. Email marketing can boost bookings, promote customer loyalty, and build brand awareness. 

Email marketing automation is a cost-effective tool that has a high impact on customer engagement. It provides valuable insights into your marketing efforts. You can establish guest satisfaction and use it to measure how well you know and meet your client’s requirements. 

For instance, social media significantly influences travelers’ decisions in the hospitality industry. A focused hotel email marketing strategy can increase traffic to your social media posts and grow your following.   

Adding social media buttons to the bottom of your emails can encourage visitors to follow or share your content, participate in competitions, win prizes, or provide feedback. 

How Do I Advertise My Hotel Business?

Hotel email marketing campaigns are an effective way to reach potential customers just at the right time. The success of your hotel email marketing campaign depends on the type of email you send and the stage of the customer journey your subscribers are in. With the best email marketing software, you can easily simplify your strategy into manageable stages and actions: 

  • Creating brand awareness: Introduce people to your hotel and provide them with all the necessary information to become familiar with your values and offerings. 
  • Get noticed: When your click-through rates increase, you’ll know that potential guests consider your hotel a possible destination. 
  • Convince prospective guests: Email marketing can help to convince people that your hotel is the best choice. You can showcase your unique selling proposition and highlight your hotel’s features and amenities. 
  • Build relationships: Keep in touch with existing guests and prospective leads, whether they book with you or not. By nurturing these relationships, you can increase the chances of repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.

How Do You Write an Email to a Hotel?

When contacting a hotel, you usually need to inquire about their amenities, prices, and availability of rooms or services for a specific period. While most hotels have this information easily accessible for hotel website visitors, some may not offer live or direct bookings. You may have to email them to confirm availability and rates.

Most hotels have dedicated email addresses for each department to ensure your inquiry reaches the correct department. For instance, if you are interested in events, use the ‘events’ email address.

Similarly, you should use the ‘reservations’ handle to make a reservation. Once you know which department to contact, send them your inquiry. Hotel staff are well-trained to provide comprehensive information in their responses to help you proceed to the next step.

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