The travel industry is always a fantastic place to be during “high Season” however, the thing we have to remember is that the good generally comes with the bad, as soon as high season is over we can definitely expect low season to be fast approaching… So, how do you stay ahead of the pack in low season? Listed below are six simple ways to stay ahead of the pack in low season without breaking the bank!
1. Launch a contest
Running a contest is a very simple and effective way of generating brand awareness and business in low season. Doing something as simple as giving away a dinner for two or Champagne on arrival, think outside the box.
A very effective way of communicating your contest or giveaway is through social media, be sure to set yourself realistic goals and targets to get the best possible outcome from your contest.
2. Run a Flash sale
Flash sales are great way of staying ahead of your competition! Here’s how they work:
Step one: significantly drop the price of the room night over a period of time, ensure the time frame is short to create a sense of urgency
Step two: advertise this over selected channels. I would only suggest doing social media, website or email.
Step three: allow the bookings to come through.
This is a very effective way of increasing bookings particularly in low season, customers think they are receiving a special deal that is only available for a short period of time (which is true) human nature then takes over and we make spontaneous decisions to book a holiday! Airlines such as Jetstar do this very well.
3. Adjust your website to suit the season
I think this is pretty self-explanatory and would be an easy change to make for most people. Adapting your website with seasons and holidays is important; not only your website’s images etc. but tours and advertisements should be adjusted to suit the season also. E.g. If its winter don’t advertise a sunny boat tour, think with the season.
4. Run Google ad words campaigns
Organic growth is a vey hard thing to achieve and most people do not know how to organically grow their business/website therefore, promoting your website is extremely important! Investing in Google ad word Campaigns can help with branding, customer’s conversion and the overall growth of your business. Its important to treat your business like a shop front. An effective way to track the success of your website is though Google analytics, this will help you track who is visiting, bounce rates, how long they are staying on your site etc. Both these tools are simple and user-friendly!
5. Ramp up your social media activity
If your property isn’t running at 100% occupancy all year round you should definitely be using social media to your advantage. Social media marketing is becoming the new channel or OTA in the travel space, advertising through social media is absolutely essential for success and unless you are turning away customers you should definitely be advertising through social media.
6. Try to increase affiliate sales
Affiliates are an important part of any business not just the accommodation industry but business in general. If you are not involved in affiliate marketing low season is a great time to start, the best way to affiliate market is to look at products and services that complement your business offering e.g. Transport, tours, insurance anything that will potentially ad value to your customers stay.