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A Guide to Hotel Mobile Marketing: Top 17 Strategies

November 28, 2023

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Mobile marketing isn’t the future – it is already revolutionizing the hospitality industry.

We live in a mobile-first world, and marketing has had to adapt. With recent shifts in consumer behavior, the travel industry, and the rise of mobile apps, mobile marketing redefines how and where to engage the target audience.

The number of smartphone mobile network subscriptions worldwide is forecast to exceed 7.7 billion by 2028, representing a large and growing segment of mobile users.

Hotel mobile marketing is a powerful tool for enhancing guest experiences, building loyalty, increasing retention, and driving revenue. But do you know hotel mobile marketing strategies? It includes responsive web design, mobile apps, social media, email campaigns, SMS messaging, and more.

In this guide, you’ll learn what hotel mobile marketing strategies you can use to drive foot traffic to your hotel.

We’ll be discussing the following 17 Hotel Mobile Marketing Strategies

What Is Hotel Mobile Marketing?

Hotel mobile marketing is a crucial strategy encompassing all the activities connecting businesses to their consumers through mobile devices and networks.

With the increasing use of smartphones, hotels utilize mobile marketing to enhance the guest experience, build brand loyalty, and drive bookings through targeted campaigns and mobile-friendly content.

Why is Mobile Marketing Important?

Hotels that include mobile strategies offer seamless user experiences, driving guest engagement and loyalty.

And it’s not just about bookings; potential customers use mobile devices for research before buying. Hence, you don’t want to miss the chance to present your hotel brand whenever opportunities arise.

Key benefits of mobile marketing for hoteliers:

  • Increased reach
  • Targeted advertising
  • Instant communication
  • Enhanced customer engagement
  • Geo-targeting capabilities
  • Personalized promotions
  • Mobile booking convenience
  • Real-time updates
  • Cost-effective marketing
  • Competitive advantage

17 Hotel Mobile Marketing Strategies

Hoteliers adopt mobile marketing strategies as the world goes mobile to reach a broader customer base and provide an advanced customer experience. Positive guest experiences shape your hotel’s reputation and turn first-time guests into loyal customers, leading to repeat business.

Here are 17 ways that hotels are effectively using mobile marketing to create meaningful touchpoints with guests:

1. Develop a User-Friendly Mobile App

Develop a User-Friendly Mobile App

Seamless booking, more straightforward navigation, and quick access – mobile app is redefining guest experience in the hotel industry. A well-designed app boosts guest satisfaction and strengthens the hotel’s brand loyalty and competitiveness in the digital era.

Reasons to develop a mobile app for a hotel:

  • Optimized booking experience
  • Track more guest data
  • Maintain brand awareness
  • Increase customer service
  • Integrate social media
  • Effective guest loyalty program
  • Customized services

Moreover, the statistics indicate that the global number of users in the travel & tourism market was forecast to continuously increase between 2023 and 2027 by, in total, 310.7 million users (+16.8 percent).

These numbers show that building a hotel mobile app is still a good idea. The objective of the mobile app is to create a user-friendly and easy-to-use application that meets the needs and preferences of its users.

Follow these steps to develop a user-friendly mobile app for your hotel.

  • Define the app’s purpose and target audience
  • Conduct market research on competitors and user preferences
  • Create a user-friendly and visually appealing UI/UX design
  • Develop a responsive and efficient backend system
  • Implement secure user authentication and data protection
  • Integrate features such as hotel search, booking, payment, and reservation management
  • Ensure seamless navigation and intuitive user interactions
  • Integrate push notifications for updates and promotions

With the always-growing list of mobile activities among customers, focus on upgrading your hotel mobile app on time to ensure a smooth experience.

2. Mobile Check-In and Check-Out

The trend is clear: guest prefers to use their mobile phones for self-service. Guests want convenience, care, and personalization.

Guests can skip traditional front desk queues, saving time and reducing friction. Real-time updates via mobile also empower guests with control over their stay. The hotel mobile app enables guests to use hotel mobile check-in to select their rooms and complete the check-in process before arriving.

Key guest benefits of using mobile check-in and check-out:

  • Skip the line
  • Choose a room before arrival
  • Check-in early
  • Receive notifications when your room is ready
  • Update details quickly

It is an excellent hotel mobile marketing strategy to provide a convenient, contactless experience. It also streamlines operations and optimizes staff efficiency by reducing manual tasks.

Key hotel benefits of implementing mobile check-in and check-out:

  • Improved operational efficiency
  • Reduce rush at the front desk
  • Cost-saving and expense reduction
  • Better staff and guest interaction
  • Upselling opportunities
  • Improved guest experience

Changing guest demands, consumer shifts, and technological integrations within the hotel industry will help you stay ahead of competitors.

3. Utilize QR Codes in Marketing Materials

Little scannable black and white-patterned squares QR codes are popping up everywhere in the hotel industry. QR codes are simple to scan with a mobile phone.

QR codes provide innovative ways to enhance guest experiences, making hospitality services more streamlined and contactless. It offers guests convenient, contactless ways to do everything, from checking in, booking a table, and viewing the menu.

Here’s how QR codes can be used within the hotel industry:

  • Contactless check-in/check-out

Guests can scan a QR code at the reception or in their rooms to access online check-in forms, reducing the need for physical paperwork and minimizing direct interaction with hotel staff.

  • Menu and ordering

Guests can browse the menu on their smartphones, place orders, and make payments without needing physical menus or cash transactions.

  • Promotion deals and offers

Guests can scan the code to access special deals on room rates, dining, spa services, or other amenities.

  • Feedback and surveys

By linking to online surveys or feedback forms via QR code, hotels can collect valuable information about the guest experience.

  • Event information

QR codes on event posters or promotional materials can provide attendees quick access to event schedules.

  • Loyalty programs

QR codes can enroll guests in loyalty programs or provide quick access to their loyalty accounts.

  • Emergency contact information

QR codes on room key cards or in guest information packets to provide quick access to emergency contact numbers.

  • Social media engagement

QR codes can link to the hotel’s social media profiles, encouraging guests to follow, share their experiences, and engage with the hotel online.

The versatility of QR codes in hotel marketing lies in their ability to streamline processes, enhance guest experiences, and provide a convenient and interactive way for hotels to connect with their guests.

4. Gather Guest Feedback through Mobile Surveys

Another great way to improve hotel mobile marketing is by gathering feedback through mobile surveys. These insights into trends and pain points can be used for hotel marketing.

The immediacy of mobile surveys ensures a timely response, fostering a positive guest experience and contributing to the hotel’s overall reputation.

There are many benefits to collecting feedback through mobile surveys, such as:

  • Feedback is more likely to be honest and accurate when available 24/7 inside the app.
  • Collecting in-app feedback can help you understand what users like and dislike.
  • Increase engagement and customer retention rates, leading to more revenue in the long term.

Some of the common forms of feedback in mobile applications include the following:

  • Users pick one option, yes or no, from a simple question: do you like our app? Simply ask your users to rate and review the app or hotel experience.
  • Measuring how many users would recommend your hotel by asking a simple question: How likely are you to recommend our hotel/mobile app to your friends and family?
  • Create friendly, open-ended questions.

5. Offer Instant Messaging Support

Instant messaging has become popular in the hotel industry.

It is as instantaneous as a phone call and supports the hotel in enhancing guest satisfaction, providing swift assistance and personalized services. It streamlines communication, allowing guests to make inquiries, request services, or address concerns in real time, fostering a positive guest experience.

Instant messaging enhances guest communication and satisfaction by providing a direct and instant channel for inquiries, requests, and issue resolution.

The convenience of mobile instant messaging aligns with modern guest preferences, creating a seamless and efficient communication channel between guests and hotel staff.

6. Integrate Social Media Sharing Options

Social media sharing options integrated with the app help hoteliers amplify brand visibility and user engagement. It empowers users to effortlessly share their experiences, promotions, or achievements from the app directly to their social networks, expanding the app’s reach.

Users sharing their positive experiences or accomplishments create authentic and persuasive content that reaches a broader audience. This user-generated content is valuable testimonials, influencing potential users and building trust in the hotel brand.

Each share exposes the app to the networks of individual users, reaching friends, family, and followers who may not be aware of the app.

Integrating social media sharing options in a mobile app creates a ripple effect, turning satisfied users into brand advocates and contributing to a more extensive and influential online presence.

7. Promote Exclusive Deals and Discounts through the Mobile App

No matter what type of hotel, a reasonable discount offer captivates your customers equally to the experience. Also, offering an exclusive deal might be a good way of initially encouraging potential customers to download your hotel app.

Here are some critical strategies for promoting and delivering exclusive offers:

  • Push notifications

Send timely push notifications to users’ mobile devices, highlighting exclusive offers and promotions to grab their attention.

  • App-exclusive packages

Design unique packages only accessible to users who book through the mobile app, providing an additional incentive for app usage.

  • In-app banners

Utilize in-app banners within the hotel app to showcase exclusive deals and encourage users to explore them further.

  • Special offers

Offer special discounts or packages exclusively available to users who make bookings through the hotel’s mobile app.

  • Limited-time offers

Create a sense of urgency by introducing limited-time offers, motivating users to take immediate action, and make reservations through the app.

  • Loyalty programs

Tie exclusive offers to the hotel’s loyalty program, encouraging users to make bookings through the app and engage with the hotel long-term.

  • Geolocation based offers

Use geolocation data to send targeted offers to users based on location, making the promotions more relevant and enticing.

  • Social media exclusive deals

Promote exclusive app offers on the hotel’s social media channels, encouraging users to download and use the app’s unique benefits.

  • QR codes

Implement QR codes in marketing materials and within the hotel to unlock exclusive offers when scanned using the mobile app.

  • Personalized deals

Leverage user data and preferences to tailor exclusive offers to individual guests, enhancing the relevance and appeal of the promotions.

  • Early bird discounts

Reward loyal app users with early access to upcoming promotions or special events before they are made available through other channels.

Moreover, you can use a mobile app to offer exclusive deals and discounts for extending a stay, promoting upsells, or even allowing them to book a future trip.

8. Mobile Room Key Technology

Mobile Room Key Technology

Today, hotel guests are looking for efficiency, control, and personalization. Hotel mobile keys are digital keys to open doors via a smartphone.

With advancements in Bluetooth, NFC, and IoT, mobile room keys have become imperative for large hotel chains looking for a definite winner. As mobile access is gaining traction among guests, hoteliers see opportunities to enhance the guest experience and make their stay even more seamless.

Here’s why digital keys are taking over hotels:

  • Guests can skip the check-in line
  • Integrate with other hotel systems
  • Improves day-to-day efficiency
  • More app downloads and engagement
  • Boosts guest loyalty
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Cost-effective option
  • Increases direct revenue

Moreover, innovations in cloud-based technologies are rapidly driving the hotel industry towards contactless experiences, with mobile keys at the forefront of this shift.

9. Employ Location-Based Marketing

Location-based marketing refers to the geolocation marketing techniques to target and capture customers. It matches opted-in location data gathered from smartphones to points of interest. It allows hoteliers to target customers close to their hotel and are more likely to come across.

Benefits of employing location-based marketing for hotels:

  • Increase the accuracy of your targeting
  • Enable you to reach customers who wouldn’t reach otherwise
  • Focus on bringing more foot traffic
  • Gather demographic, behavioral, and engagement data
  • Improve brand awareness
  • Generate more booking and revenue
  • Utilize this data for other marketing tactics

Also, location-based marketing can be used to contextual-triggered notifications to inform about events happening, dinner reservations, or facility updates from the moment they enter the lobby. Moreover, hotels can enhance personalization by tailoring promotions and recommendations to a guest’s location.

10. Implement SMS Campaigns to Send Targeted Promotions

With near-instant delivery, SMS ensures timely communication of promotions, reservation details, and personalized offers, fostering a sense of exclusivity.

SMS boasts exceptionally high open rates, as messages are often read within minutes of receipt. It helps direct and immediate real-time communication between hotels and guests, enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Here’s why implementing SMS campaigns is essential for targeted promotions:

  • Increased engagement: It resonates better with specific segments, capturing attention and interest effectively.
  • Improved conversion rates: It addresses unique needs, driving higher conversion rates by appealing directly to relevant guest interests.
  • Enhanced customer loyalty: It fosters a sense of value, strengthening the bond between guests and the hotel brand.
  • Cost-efficiency: It targets specific segments and reduces marketing spending by directing efforts toward the most receptive audience.
  • Data utilization: Leveraging guest data allows for precise targeting, ensuring promotions align with preferences and behaviors.
  • Competitive advantage: It differentiates the hotel, effectively creating a competitive edge and attracting specific guest demographics.

Moreover, SMS campaigns provide a convenient platform for feedback collection and service-related inquiries, improving guest experiences and solidifying the hotel’s brand presence in the highly competitive hotel industry.

11. Utilize Mobile Advertising Platforms

Through targeted campaigns, mobile advertising platforms enable hotels to connect with potential guests in real-time, reaching a vast audience on their mobile devices. Mobile advertising platforms facilitate ad management designed explicitly for mobile devices.

There are a lot of mobile advertising platforms, but choose the one that aligns with your hotel’s marketing strategy.

  • Google ads are something you can see at the top of the first lines
  • Social media mobile advertising campaigns are very effective
  • Bing is also a sizeable mobile advertising platform with a complete toolbox
  • AdMob service is popular among advertisers and mobile app developers because it allows them to receive app monetization by displaying ad

With features such as geotargeting and personalized ads, hotels can engage users based on location and preferences, maximizing the impact of their promotions. Mobile advertising platforms empower hotels to stay top-of-mind and effectively tap into the mobile-centric habits of today’s travelers.

12. Design Mobile-Friendly Emails

Design Mobile-Friendly Emails

Mobile-friendly email campaigns are designed to optimize content and layout for seamless viewing on mobile devices. Simply put, a mobile-friendly approach to email design means ensuring a good user experience on small screens.

The main plus points of mobile-friendly emails are:

  • Increased conversion rates
  • Higher audience engagement
  • Reduced subscriber churn
  • Fewer emails in the spam folder

Since now you know why mobile-friendly emails are essential for hotels, let’s explore how to write mobile-friendly emails:

  • Create a responsive email template
  • Keep subject lines short
  • Use mobile-friendly formatting
  • Make sure links are extensive and set apart
  • Test emails out on a mobile screen
  • Pay attention to your analytics

As mobile-friendly emails are sent directly to customers, the purpose is to capture their attention and convert them. Compelling visuals, adapted for smaller screens, enhance engagement. Create a practical, user-friendly experience, driving higher open rates and engagement.

13. Implement In-App Messaging for Direct Communication

In-app messaging helps you build a personalized rapport with customers. In-app messages are notifications that are sent to customers while they’re using your app.

These messages can serve various purposes, such as providing information, promoting a facility or service, or asking for feedback while the customer is browsing your mobile app.

  • Benefits of im-app messaging for hotel marketing include:
  • Real-time messages enable direct communication between hoteliers and guests.
  • Hoteliers can create personalized messages for each customer.
  • Improves guest experience by providing convenience and accessibility.
  • Guests can report concerns or issues directly through the app.
  • Hoteliers can send personalized promotions and offers to specific guests.

In-app messaging provides a convenient platform for guests to address inquiries swiftly, ensuring quick issue resolution. Seamless messaging can help staff efficiently attend to guests’ needs, contributing to a positive and memorable stay.

14. Use of AR (Augmented Reality) in Your Mobile App

AR is already used in many domains, and the hospitality industry is no exception. Augmented reality is the integration of digital data into the real world.

AR-focused tools and frameworks make it easier for hoteliers to help potential customers visualize room layouts, amenities, and local attractions through device screens, making informed booking decisions.

AR guides can assist guests in navigating hotel facilities, and real-time language translation can enhance communication.

Gamified elements, like virtual concierge services, elevate engagement. AR transforms the hotel stay into a dynamic, interactive encounter, improving customer satisfaction and loyalty.

This enhancement level is making a significant impact on the potential customer’s mind and generating more leads.

15. Local Mobile Search Ads

Local Mobile Search Ads

Today, local search happens on mobile.

If your hotel is struggling to generate foot traffic, using local search ads is a powerful way to attract nearby customers to your hotel. Local search results include information such as business hours, reviews, directions, and phone numbers. Another benefit is immediate visibility online for your hotel.

Follow these hotel mobile marketing tips for local mobile search ads:

  • Use ad formats that are optimized for mobile devices
  • Use location targeting
  • Implement click-to-call functionality
  • Ensure that your landing pages are optimized
  • Use analytics tools to monitor the performance

People click on local search ads with eye-catching images or videos. Local mobile search ads effectively reach their target customers and drive conversions.

16. Mobile SEO

Do you have a mobile SEO strategy for your hotel? If not, you’re losing potential customers.

Mobile SEO refers to optimizing website content for flawless viewing on mobile devices and ranking higher on SERPs. It helps improve organic traffic, from search results to your hotel website.

According to Statista, Google accounted for 96.46% of the global mobile search engine market. In comparison to searching from a laptop or desktop computer, users on mobile devices are more likely to conduct searches for seeking information.

Follow these essential tips for mobile SEO:

  • Create mobile-friendly content
  • Use structured data on mobile website
  • Target voice-friendly search keywords
  • Optimize mobile site speed
  • Optimize meta title and tags for mobile SERPs
  • Monitor keyword positions frequently
  • Compare desktop vs. mobile SEO performance

As people spend more time browsing the website using mobile devices, you must ensure a positive experience. A robust mobile SEO plan will help you reach leads interested in hotel bookings.

17. Chatbots

Hotel chatbot is not the same as live chat. Chatbots provide instant and real-time answers.

Chatbots are among the modern hotel mobile marketing tools that are pre-programmed to interact and communicate with customers naturally and simulate the behavior of a human within a conversational format.

Chatbots use AI technology known as Natural Language Processing (NLP) to understand questions and provide correct answers.  Based on the questions asked by the customers, they provide answers from pre-built responses.

Integrating chatbots into a hotel mobile marketing strategy can offer numerous benefits, such as real-time customer engagement and efficient distribution of information.

Here are some aspects of integrating chatbots into mobile marketing:

  • Answering frequently asked questions
  • Send timely notifications like booking, dinner reservations, events, and other reminders
  • Facilitate transactions by guiding the user through the payment process

Also, chatbots provide hotel staff context before engaging customers who need to speak to a natural person after the conversation. It enables the staff to provide accurate information and address the customer’s pain points.

Conclusion

Mobile marketing is more than just a trend in a world where guests are constantly connected.

As we conclude our guide to hotel mobile marketing, it is evident that the imperative lies in crafting an experience that seamlessly integrates across mobile platforms, offering guests convenience and a personalized and engaging journey.

Mobile marketing redefines the gateway to guest interaction, service excellence, and efficient operations. From responsive website designs and intuitive mobile apps to targeted SMS and push notifications, hotel mobile apps deliver seamless experiences.

Therefore, hotels can elevate their brands by prioritizing local SEO, embracing emerging technologies like AR, and implementing mobile-friendly booking processes. Hotels must meet and exceed guest expectations, creating a mobile presence that mirrors their in-person excellence.

Knowing these top 17 hotel mobile marketing strategies will help you reach guests and create meaningful connections that translate into loyalty and long-term success.

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