Most hotels cater to a wide variety of guests. There are the family vacationers, the elderly sightseers, and the solo adventurers. But what about business travelers? If your establishment doesn’t cater to this demographic, it’s missing out on a huge opportunity.
In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to attract business travelers to your hotel. Doing so can lead to higher and more consistent revenue. Sound good? Then let’s get started!
The Business Traveler Opportunity
Business travelers present a wonderful opportunity for hotels. Take a look at these statistics:
- By 2020, business travel spend will reach $1.6 trillion.
- An average of 1.3 million business trips occurs every day in the U.S. alone.
- In regard to business travel spend, China and the U.S are the top markets.
- One survey found that 90% of people agree that business travel spurs company growth.
Business travel opens up a world of possibilities for your hotel. After all, every professional traveler needs a place to stay once they reach their destination. If you live and work in a well-traveled city, you can potentially increase revenue by catering to these folks.
Business travel can be especially helpful during off seasons. If your hotel ever experiences a lull in occupancy, working to attract business travelers can help fill the void.
How to Attract More Business Travelers
As we’ve just seen, the business traveler opportunity is huge. How can your hotel take advantage? Just follow these six tips.
1. Know Your Audience
First off, you have to know who your audience is. Not just business travelers in general, but the kind of business travelers that want to stay at your hotel. If you run a budget-conscious establishment, for example, you probably won’t be hosting very many CEOs or other company executives. The opposite is also true. An upscale hotel will likely host c-suite workers more often than those lower on the totem pole.
We recommend that you create a specific buyer persona for business travelers. A buyer persona (also known as a marketing persona) is simply a fictional character that represents your ideal customer. If different kinds of business travelers frequent your hotel, create a persona for each of them.
Once you know what kind of business traveler you’re trying to reach, you can adjust your marketing efforts to speak directly to that kind of person.
2. Offer Business Rates
While it’s true that business travelers don’t concern themselves with price nearly as much as leisure travelers, a business rate is still appreciated. Just because a corporate guest isn’t personally responsible for the bill doesn’t mean their company hasn’t given them an accommodations budget to stick to.
By offering business travelers a special rate for staying at your hotel, you’ll make it easy for them to complete their bookings. You’ll also increase the likelihood that they’ll stay with you again the next time they’re in town.
3. Engage Your Travelers
Do your best to encourage your corporate guests to follow your hotel on Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube — or whatever social channels your business uses. Give them a special discount for subscribing to your email list. Then, before they arrive, contact them with all the essential details for their stay. Once they’ve left, send them occasional offers for future trips.
If you’re able to stay in contact with travelers after they’ve left your establishment, you’ll have a much better chance at securing repeat stays.
4. Make Their Stay Convenient
Remember, business travelers are different than vacationers. They didn’t necessarily choose to leave the comfort of their own homes and travel to your hotel. Their company sent them for a specific, work-related purpose.
So the more convenient you can make their stay the better. Simple things like fast, free WiFi, multiple power outlets and an ironing board in each room, and quick check-in and out go a long way. So do healthy food options and an exercise room. All of these things help business travelers make the most of their stay and allow them to keep a somewhat normal schedule.
If you really want to impress your corporate guests, get a mobile app built for your hotel so that your customers can have all of their trip details in one convenient location. And partner with a local car service to make it as easy as possible for your guests to get where they need to go.
5. Prepare Your Staff
One of the best ways to attract business travelers to your hotel is to simply provide an amazing experience for them the first time they stay. If your corporate customers enjoy their time at your establishment, they’ll likely come again the next time they’re in town.
To provide the best experience, you need to prepare your staff. They’ll be the ones who interface with your guests most often. Make sure each of them is trained properly and is friendly, responsive, and resourceful.
If you can ensure your guests have a fantastic experience when they visit your establishment, they’ll book again in the future. Your staff plays a major role in whether this happens or not.
6. Provide a Loyalty Program
Finally, to consistently attract business travelers, provide a loyalty program for them to participate in. Whether its to attend annual conferences, meet with top clients, or oversee specific branch offices, many corporate guests return to the same locations year after year. A loyalty program will incentivize them to rebook your hotel whenever they’re in the area.
Your loyalty program could give guests the chance to earn free or discounted stays after a certain amount of bookings. Or you could offer room upgrade options or free food vouchers. Whatever you decide to include in your loyalty program, just make sure that your corporate guests will find it valuable.
Go Forth and Attract Business Travelers to Your Hotel
Business travelers present an amazing opportunity for your hotel. Don’t miss out on it! All you have to do to capitalize is follow the six tips we outlined above. Simply know your audience, offer business rates, engage your travelers, make their stay convenient, prepare your staff, and provide a loyalty program.
Do that and you’ll start to attract business travelers at a steady clip, which will help you boost yearly revenue numbers and get through lean months. Good luck!