July 21, 2014 • By Joe Haydn
Today, the list of awesome hotel email marketing secrets continues. Last week, we covered setting up and building your list. This week I’m going to share some of the best techniques to getting your emails opened and read.
- Short and direct subject lines: Your subject line has one goal--to encourage the recipient to open the email. A good subject line either creates a sense of urgency or poses a question in the readers mind or both. (It doesn’t have to be in the form of a question, but it can be).
- Follow through: Now that you’ve written your subject line, your email has to answer your reader’s question. If it doesn’t, your reader will stop opening future emails regardless of how intriguing your subject lines are. Furthermore, they may lose trust in your brand altogether.
- Personalize and localize whenever possible: While your readers know you’re sending them a mass email, your job is to get them to forget that inherent negative. Last week, I mentioned using your hotel PMS to enable email campaigns to different types of guests from spa regulars to weekend warriors. When you write emails, make it clear WHY they’re getting this email. Include sentences that tell them they are special such as, “We’re only sending this email to our loyal spa guests.” It may be a mass email, but it doesn’t have to feel like one!
- Encourage replies: You spend your days (and sometimes evenings) encouraging guests to ask you questions. Your emails should do the same. Ideally, you should avoid NoReply emails, but in some cases, this is unrealistic. If you must send NoReply emails, instruct guests how they should reply and to whom.
- Be consistent: This may be the most important rule in all of marketing. Decide on a schedule you can actually deliver on, or find a firm that specializes in email for hotels. When guests don’t hear from you for months at a time they forget about you. You’re stuck beginning the whole relationship over. These rebuilt relationships are never as strong as the original. If you have trouble being consistent, identify where your process gets stuck and apply the resources required to get it done! For instance, you like to include a note from your GM in your monthly newsletter. But your GM has limited time and throws off your schedule. Either have someone else interview your GM and write the note or change this to a quarterly feature. Make it as simple as it sounds.