The third one in my 2019-trends-blog-series: personalization. 2019 is the year of personalized content. Calling your followers by name, making good use of their data and optimizing your content to be person-specific. Sounds difficult? It doesn't have to be. Personalization is definitely not the easiest marketing tool to get a grip on but you can certainly apply it to your business without too much effort.
In this post we're going to look at a few ways hospitality brands can make use of personalization. I'll give you a couple of ideas you can start integrating even today. So let's get started.
Start gathering data
If we assume you haven't gathered any data before, then this is your starting point. As a hotel you probably already have quite an archive of personal data but as a restaurant, café or coffee shop you might have never collected even a single piece of information. If that's the case, then let's start by doing so right now.
First we need to decide what data to gather. So let's start with:
- Your customer's full name
- Their birthdate
- If you gather information offline: their e-mail address
You might also want to know where they live. This could be their address or just their country (if you have lots of tourists as guests).
Then, on top of that, you might want to get some more brand-specific data. Think about this: imagine your a coffeehouse. Then you could maybe ask your customers what their favorite type of coffee is. Then, by knowing their birthdate and name, you could send them an automated e-mail through mail chimp (or another e-mail service provider) on their birthday, offering them a free cup of [favorite coffee].
So as a restaurant, café or coffeehouse, you could ask your guests their favorite drink/meal/cake that you offer. As a hotel, you might need to be a bit more creative (since you can't just give away ‘their favorite room'). But there's plenty of options.
Let's say you're a music-themed hotel. Then you could ask your guests what their favorite music-genre is (let them pick one out of 10 genres, put boxes on a little card or in an online survey that they can tick off). Then on their birthday you could send them a birthday song in that genre.
Or maybe you're a family hotel. In that case you could ask your visitors what kind of movies they like and send them a movie-recommendation-for-the-whole-family every now and then.
Or maybe you're a hostel and you get tons of true ‘adventurers' through the door. Then why not gather some data on their favorite kinds of adventures, and send them some recommendations based upon that data every now and then. Share, for example, new Lonely Planet articles or cool travel videos you stumble upon the web, that match their adventure-interests.
How to gather data?
You could gather data by starting a specific ad on Facebook or Instagram where by clicking the right button, the person gets to sign up right away. You can find this function easily through the Facebook ad manager when creating an ad. Working with a mail server like Mailchimp will then allow you to create automated e-mails, like for example birthday e-mails, holiday e-mails and so on. To make people more likely to do this, you could offer them a little discount upon signing up (send a discount voucher, for example, to their e-mail address. This, again, could be automated).
If you also want to gather data offline, through for example cards, you got two options: you could have little cards designed (hire me) that either let people sign up right at the spot, or that they can take home so they can check you out online afterwards. In that case you'd have a link to a sign-up form on the card. But this second method is very likely to be less effective as people tend to be too lazy to look a place up after their visit 😉
Other ways of personalization
There's of course a lot more one could do in terms of personalization. You could create a message for Instagram, for example, that you send to each new follower. Thank them for following you and start the message by using their name.
If you want to get real intense, you could make little videos. Create one video and then edit it for each new follower by editing the first part: call them by their name through, for example, a text layer. But that's a lot of effort right there.
Another option would be chatbots, which can be automated to use personalization as well. But this is a whole other chapter. I'll get into this at some point later this or next month.
Need help to incorporate these trends into your business? Then let's get in touch. I offer social media management, strategies and content consulting. Besides that you can hire me at any time as a photographer, videographer, webdesigner or graphic designer for your hospitality business. Interested? Let's get in touch!
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I'm trying my very best to put out content that helps you, the owner, designer of manager of a hospitality brand, to bring your business to the next level. All posts on Tremento are created with hospitality brands specifically in mind. Articles talk about practical tips and inspiration for social media, design, photography and more. You can read the previous two posts about trends here. It's about micro-influencers.
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