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5 Best Practices to Get Past Hotel Guests to Rebook Directly

Wanny Mei
BY
Wanny Mei
February 17, 2021
hotel with a swimming pool
It’s much easier to convince an already happy guest to stay at your hotel again than it is to convince a stranger to make a booking. If a guest was satisfied with their experience the first time, it will take less work for hotel marketers to welcome them back.

Here is a hotel marketing plan for how to welcome past guests back for another enjoyable stay at your property.


person sitting and texting



First, engage with your guests.


No matter which hotel remarketing strategies you use, not very many guests will want to come back to stay at your hotel if they had a bad experience the first time. The most important part of a successful remarketing plan is making the best first impression you can. Without proper attention to creating exemplary guest experiences, remarketing strategies will inevitably fall short.


To ensure that your guests have the best experiences at your hotel, communication is key. To increase engagement at your hotel, use guest messaging. Text messaging increases guest engagement by 25%, so you can effectively ensure better guest experiences. As a channel, texting is a quick and simple way to communicate, and its ease encourages more guests to interact with you and express their needs.


Akia in-stay survey samples


Provide the best guest experience the first time around.


You could ask guests about their stay face-to-face, but people can sometimes feel uncomfortable about telling you how they really feel. By giving your guests a quick and accessible avenue to provide honest feedback, you can address potential problems before guests leave your property (and leave you a negative review).


Tools like in-stay guest surveys can also enable service recovery while guests are still present, and post-stay guest surveys can even drive happy guests to leaving you a 5-star review on various review websites, like TripAdvisor or Google Reviews, improving your hotel’s overall reputation.


There’s no doubt that your charm can make for great guest experiences, but you can also add to that with other tools to have a clear-cut grasp on how guests are actually feeling.


person spilling a glass of glitter



When applicable, remember the special occasions.


Who doesn’t appreciate when others remember their birthday? Show your guests you care by remembering their special occasions that you’re aware of.


Birthdays are a no-brainer, but other occasions like anniversaries, graduations, or promotions are also great events to celebrate. Of course, figuring out personal details like these take direct engagement with guests, but with a little communication and openness from your guests, you can effectively take note of special occasions and invite them back to your hotel to celebrate. Sometimes, people just want a reason to celebrate something, and you can provide them with the space to do so.


Of course, holidays are also a perfect time to invite guests back for another amazing stay at your hotel. Send out those Valentine’s Day invitations, get ready for Independence Day celebrations, and give people a chance to really relax on Labor Day.


sample of Akia's own retargeting ads


Use paid retargeting advertisements.


While it’s always good practice to send promotions to past guests directly, you can also help to nudge them along the decision funnel with retargeting ads. A lot of the time, people don’t make bookings after just seeing one promotion; it takes a few reminders to get people to make the commitment.


Your hotel can use retargeting ads to remind past guests about your special offers coming up through platforms like Google Ads and Facebook. With these platforms, the ads can show up on Google’s Display Network and on some social media websites that people frequently use, so your offerings can continue to stay on their minds while they’re browsing through the internet.


With retargeting ads, it’s also important to create highly targeted messaging that speaks directly to previous guests in order to invite them to make a reservation on your website. With highly personalized messaging, your ads can feel like they’re talking to your past guests directly, which enables higher engagement and conversions.



SMS remarketing sample message


Remarket to previous guests through SMS marketing.


Rather than sending another promotional email that goes unopened, try text-message marketing. SMS marketing is another way to re-engage previous guests with special deals. On average, text-message marketing has a 98 percent open rate, compared to a 20 percent open rate for email marketing. SMS marketing also has a 45 percent response rate, compared to a 6 percent response rate for email.


Emails often go unopened in inboxes, since so many organizations use email marketing, and people can feel overwhelmed by the sheer volume of emails coming in. On the other hand, text message marketing can be a way to grab attention, since it’s a platform that can be very quick and easy to engage with.


Get more direct conversions by inviting guests back directly through SMS with targeted and personalized deals.


hotel front desk staff on the phone

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