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e-Mail Marketing a Powerful Medium of Communication

June 20, 2008

Itís no surprise that the key to build a solid relationship with your guests is communication. The only question is how to communicate the right message, at the right time, to the right people?

ĎEmailí is one of the most overlooked yet effective modes of communication. It has been around for decades, but not many realize how useful it can be. Emails can help you deliver your message right to your guestís email inbox and it can do this cost-effectively.

E-mail Marketing is a form of direct marketing using electronic mail as a means of communicating commercial or fundraising messages to an audience. In its broadest sense, every email sent to a potential or current guest could be considered as email marketing.

Email Marketing is one of the most powerful marketing tools available today as it allows you to communicate more information, more often & with a tight marketing budget it can cost much lesser than you can imagine. It is extremely cost-effective and when used properly, it can boost your sales to a whole new level. Email marketing can be used to turn those with no interest in your product into prospects & from prospects to guests.

The best part about email marketing is that it's easy, affordable, direct, actionable and highly effective. Surveys say that guests prefer to hear from you via email than any other way. It helps you spend less time, money and resources as oppose to traditional marketing methods.

You can start interacting with potential guests on a regular basis by sending out monthly or quarterly newsletters. A vital part of this email marketing activity is collecting email addresses to send to. We all know that people are not too keen to give their email addresses away to everyone; therefore a proper strategy should be implemented to gather a reasonable list in a short span of time.

You can do that by adding a simple email sign-up box on your website which will help you build a database of future clients. You can also gather basic data on your guests by requesting feedback at the time of departure i.e. add telephone, address and email address sections to your feedback form. Another benefit of this data is that it can teach you more about your customer profiles which will help you target your promotions more effectively.

Tip: Always offer an incentive for people to send you their email address; otherwise they wonít. You can do that by including discounts and special offers in your leaflets and promotions for people to sign up.

Some of the advantages of Email marketing are:

Cost-effective:
Email Marketing is extremely cost effective as sending an email costs the same regardless of distance and no matter how many people you send it to. It saves you the cost of postage, printing and packaging.

Convenient:
Emailing makes communication a simple click of a button. You could be sitting in the smallest corner of the world but with the help of emails you can send customized messages to a large (global) audience. Your message will be stored until the recipient is ready to read it.

Speed:
In this fast growing world of immense cut throat competition, it is very important that your communication reaches your guest before your competitors. And, thanks to the power of the internet, you tap the market within minutes via an email message.

Increase Sales Conversions:
No matter how good your hotel is, unless the audience is aware about it, increasing your sales can be quite a grueling task. By adopting the email marketing method, you can use monthly e-newsletters to communicate with guests about whatís happening in and around your hotel such as festivals, carnivals, competitions, new schemes etc. This will help generate interest and convert potential guests into guests.

Generate Repeat Sales:
The saying ĎItís more difficult to retain existing guests than to gain new onesí is extremely true. In fact, research indicates that it is ten times more expensive to acquire a new guest than to sell your product to an existing one. To retain existing guests, you have to constantly keep track of their changing preferences and plan your move accordingly. And, while new sales are great, strong emphasis should be given to the value of repeat sales. Email marketing helps you keep in touch with guests on a regular basis via email cost effectively and allow you to generate repeat sales which can be highly profitable for any business.

Gain Valuable Feedback:
Understanding your guestís feelings towards your hotel is an important factor for your success. Guest feedback is an invaluable tool and it allows you to determine - how guestís rate your hotel, how to market your hotel, what will entice guests back to your hotel, etc. Using the email method, you can gather constructive & honest feedback from your guest without impediments of face to face interaction such as shyness that prevent guests from about voicing their true feelings.

In conclusion, Email Marketing is one of the most effective communication tools that you can use to attract new guests and retain existing ones by keeping touch with them, year round. Moreover, this form of communication is easy on your budget as it requires minimal operating cost.

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