Bringing guests from abroad can be challenging for every hotel, but these clients are arguably the most profitable ones, and therefore attractive to target. By analyzing data you can have a better understanding of the different source markets and which of them can bring the most valuable guests to your door.
The opportunities and challenges of targeting international guests
As we wrote about in our article about the value of international guests for hotels, there are several good reasons why your hotel should focus on this segment:
- They have a bigger budget and stay longer
International trips are not as frequent as domestic ones, but as a result an international traveler’s average budget per day is often much higher.
- Longer lead time and lower cancellation rate
Due to the effort and budget behind an international trip, the guest is less likely to cancel, and more likely to book in further in advance. This gives you the safety of having a good base of occupancy so that you can be creative with your rate strategy for bookings with shorter lead times.
- They are likely to spend more on-site
Long haul travelers are more likely to want maximum comfort during their stay, which makes them a much better target for upselling and cross-selling strategies.
- A wider audience will give you more opportunities to recover from difficult situations
In the case of unpredictable situations, being able to reach out to a global and wider audience can be a decisive advantage. Every hotel’s survival chances to navigate through adversities are much higher when their potential customer base is global, and not just local.
However, targeting international audiences does present some challenges:
- Language barrier
Determining the best language to communicate with your target can be tricky. Even if English can often work as lingua franca, customized ads, marketing materials, and multilingual staff members for target languages can put you on the front foot!
- Communication channels
The internet has made it much easier to reach out to people on the other side of the globe, but that doesn’t mean everyone is using the same channels to gather information and engage with each other. Take the time to research where travelers from your target markets are hanging out online.
- Different habits
Another key challenge of welcoming international guests is the diversity of habits and behaviors of each culture. Making sure that you're ready to host and make every guest feel comfortable can be difficult if you have limited information about your audience.
Through Hotelbeds’s network of travel agents, you can widen your global reach, and communicate directly to new potential customers everywhere in the world, with a partner that speaks the local language and knows the market. Check our article about the benefits of selling your rooms via travel agents.
The importance of geographical segmentation for your hotel
In light of these opportunities, and overcoming the challenges, segmenting your audience and defining your targets, is key to your hotel’s success.
By using data to analyse the best performing markets for your hotel, correct segmentation can have a positive effect on your hotel’s yield.
More effective tailor-made marketing strategies
Knowing where your audience is coming from can be a great advantage! It allows you to know which language they speak, and to create advertising campaigns for specific markets. This allows you to deliver a message that is more engaging and resonates better.
Improves the return on your marketing investments and boosts your revenues
Investing in campaigns and in communication for a tighter audience is cheaper, and if you target the right segment correctly, your investment will have a much higher return.
Data-driven market analysis can provide your hotel with insightful information about what’s the ideal target audience for your hotel.
With more information on your audience, you can improve their experience
Knowing what’s the origin country of your guest can give you valuable information to make their experience comfortable and personalised from the very first moment.
Find out more
To deep dive on how different channel distribution strategies can improve your hotel’s performance, check out the Hotelbeds guide to hotel distribution in 2020.