Why are Marketing Emails so Important (and Effective)?

Marketing emails serve a different purpose than automatic guest emails (see "Odysys Academy: Guest Emails"). Both types of emails are important parts of your marketing mix. Marketing emails are often overlooked by innkeepers even though they often generate a better return than most other marketing tactics.

The most simple form of marketing emails is a simple monthly email newsletter that gets sent out to past guests and website visitors who opt-in. Email newsletters make your other marketing efforts more effective. There's no excuse not to do an email newsletter - email newsletter marketing is well within reach for all innkeepers. There are free and inexpensive tools available, and Odysys offers an email newsletter marketing service if you'd rather outsource the effort entirely.

Let the Stats Speak for Themselves

Did you know email is MUCH more effective than social media at driving direct bookings? Yet we find that hospitality professionals are much more likely to post to a social media account regularly than send a regular email newsletter.

How to Get Started with Email Newsletter Marketing

There's no reason to wait. Start a monthly email newsletter marketing campaign.

  1. Pick Your Platform: Use the inexpensive Odysys email newsletter marketing service OR use a free/inexpensive email marketing platform like mailchimp.com. 
  2. DO NOT: Send your email newsletter from your email software/client (outlook, apple mail, gmail, etc). Use an email platform like mailchimp.
  3. Opt-in your guests. A lot of online booking engines will have a feature where you can ask guests to opt-in by checking a box. Other times you can simply ask, or opt-in your guests by default.
  4. Opt-in your website visitors. Add an opt-in form to your website (we like a slide-in form like this one below from mailchimp)
  5. Send an email newsletter monthly: Even in your offseason. Consistency is key to results.
  6. Follow the 90/10 rule: An effective email is one that gets opened.  Feature guides, tips, and resources for visiting your destination. This can include your latest blog posts or links to articles from others. Follow the 90/10 rule of 90% educational, travel-related content and 10% of promotional content about your property. 
  7. Have a call to action button: A simple button on your email asking your guests to book is all you need to make your emails effective.
  8. DO NOT neglect email newsletter marketing: It's a simple, effective path to more direct bookings. Every property will benefit from an email newsletter marketing program.

Done? Congrats! You're one step further down the roadmap towards more bookings and a commission-free future.

Example slide-in form on a website

Extra Credit

Want to learn a little more about the subject? Here's a couple recommended resources.

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