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Why Hotels Need to Implement Text Message Marketing

BY
November 16, 2020
How many times have you sent out an email newsletter and received little to no leads from it? Or you’ll look at your email’s analytics, and less than 20% of your recipients even opened it? We’re not denying that email marketing is a popular and effective marketing tool, but it’s understandable to be frustrated about putting work into something that doesn’t get seen.

From the recipient’s perspective, email marketing is so widespread that newsletters often get lost in the sea of unread emails. Any organization that has ever collected your email probably continues to send updates and promotions that you either delete right away or just never open. Even if you really like a specific organization, too many emails from them can still feel like spam. Unread emails continue to pile up, and the trouble of sorting through everything makes people put it off even more. Does this look familiar to you?


yes this is a screenshot from my own phone


The average open rate for emails throughout all industries is 21.3%. Even the highest open rates in certain industries are under 30%. On the other hand, text message marketing is a growing platform that gets more opens and conversions in less time. On average, the open rate for text message marketing is 98%, which is undoubtedly higher than email. The SMS response rate is 45% compared to 6% for emails, and it takes people an average of 90 seconds to reply to text messages, versus 90 minutes for email. Most people are also open to businesses texting them with offers, with 75% of people liking offers in text messages. Conversion rates are also higher, with SMS marketing at an average of 29% versus 3.3% for email marketing. For marketers, getting higher returns for the work put in is always a good sign.


Why does text message marketing get higher engagement than email marketing? If we break the comparison down to the qualities of these platforms, it’s very reasonable. Texting is instantaneous, and it’s much faster to draft a text than write an email. In general, emails take longer to draft, especially when considering the etiquette that comes with them. In the same grain, people communicate with friends and family more often through text messages. Because text messaging feels much more personal and casual as a platform, people don’t necessarily need to worry about the details like punctuation and grammar. When it comes to visibility, all text messages always show up at the top of your notifications and stay there until you open them, whereas emails don’t necessarily show up in your notification center unless you set it up that way. Considering these characteristics, text message marketing is more likely to directly reach a target audience.


In the context of the hotel industry, it’s important to build guest loyalty. From a hotel marketer’s angle, you would want them to come back again or recommend your hotel to their friends and family. You would also want them to book directly with your hotel, rather than through an OTA that takes a large cut in commissions. While your email campaigns may reach some of your previous guests, not all of them will see your promotions, and the opportunity to build stronger relationships with those guests would be lost. Instead of continuing to send emails to cluttered inboxes, try text message marketing to reach your audience.


The foundation of any relationship is communication. For communication to even begin, your audience actually has to see your messages, and up to 98% of them will actually see the messages and engage with you when you text them. You can reach your previous guests directly, invite them to stay again or offer a promotion, and continue to give them a great personalized experience. As you continue to engage with your audience, you will build stronger and closer relationships that last.


Of course, you don’t have the time to text every previous guest individually. You could have hundreds, maybe thousands of people who’ve stayed at your hotel in the past. And maybe you have previous guests who don’t drink and probably wouldn’t want to be contacted about a wine tour promotion. With Akia, you can automate your messages without sacrificing that personal touch, saving you time and maintaining excellent hospitality. You can also segment your guests into particular audiences and create campaigns that speak directly to their interests. Implementing text message marketing into your strategy can be very simple, and your hotel can keep more revenue when more people are booking directly with you.


Learn more about Akia’s different plans, and schedule a demo with us today!


hotel front desk staff on the phone

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