“It all comes down to the consumer.” if you intend to create a brand for your hotel.
This is one of the most well-known statements any hospitality manager could hear.
As a manager, you need to have an identity for your business so that the consumers themselves can start to identify with you and your services.
So, where do you begin and how should you go about forming a strategy to get the best branding possible?
A strong brand is important for any business, but when it comes to the hospitality industry, it almost becomes more important.
You are not only providing a service, but an experience to go along with it. It isn’t just a quick fix for consumers needs or wants. You want them to feel at home, within the identity you have built. You need to understand the way in which the consumer thinks.
It is difficult for a customer to want your service if they feel they can get something similar somewhere else. That is why you must give yourself a unique, no matter what it takes. Don’t just fall into the mix of ‘just another hotel.’
“Brand equity is when consumers associate that brand with positive and favourable feelings.”
You want your brand to be one that a consumer keeps on coming back to, and not just for the free chocolate, you give them on their pillow.
To understand your brand, you need a strategy to create one. Here are some tips we believe will turn you into a ‘master brand’ in your industry.
Get yourself a set of Branding Guidelines
Once you have decided on the brand you want, you need to compile a set of guidelines so that it becomes consistent. Just remember, you need to keep in mind the audience that you are catering for. Your branding needs to keep in mind, first and foremost, the audience you are wanting to cater for (This will be discussed in the next tip).
Your brand identity needs to be shown through your:
However, you need to make sure of the finer details:
· The stationery you use.
· Your online presence
· All and any ads, etc.
You need to decide what you want your audience to see if it is a luxury property or a more casual experience. All of which will be laid out in your branding guideline.
Having a guideline will allow anyone in the company to see who you are, what you stand for, and how you want to be seen.
Understand your Audience
You need to know who your hotel will appeal to, who would want what you can offer, and why. You need to know who will be spreading the word about your business.
Take the time to see, firstly, the type of audience you would want. If it is people who like the luxury side of things, or if it is rather those who would want a more casual experience. From there, find out the finer details.
Send out questionnaires, do surveys. Anything that will help you understand them that much more.
Unified Web Experience
After you have figured out your branding guidelines, take it over to your social media accounts. There are hundreds of social networks that you could use, you just need to start picking the right ones for you.
If you have an incredible viewpoint from your restaurant, or your hotel has incredible interior decorating, set up an Instagram account to share it with your audience.
Have a consistent design, all matching with the website you have already set up. Have call-to-actions and easy, readable content. It would be a good idea to outsource a digital marketing agency who can take care of this for you.
Unified Employee Programme
You need your employees to all be on board as well.
The culture you have within your business will be reflected in the brand that you portray.
Start by asking your employees what they believe the brand of your hotel should be. Let them help with the branding guidelines, and have a unified front when it comes to understanding your identity.
When you start to hire new employees, make sure they will suit your brand and educate them about what you expect them to know.
Above everything, keep them happy and keep them communicating. Incentivize them to grow and to reflect the brand’s identity in their own actions.
At the end of the day, you can do as much as possible with your brand and online presence, but if your audience is not sharing that information, what was the point?
82% of your business will come from face to face conversations that people have regarding your business. Be sure to provide them with an accessible way to share and talk about their experience.
Leave a review section that encourages them to leave a positive testimonial that you can use on your social media platforms.
Use incentives for your guests to encourage them to want to come back and want to share their incredible experience.
Make their experience a never-ending one. Make a brand for your hotel like never before.
Create a brand that people will come back to and please make sure that you stick to your guidelines throughout. And remember that you can contact us at any time for help with the brand for your hotel.