For many years the owners and operators of 5-star luxury hotel properties in the U.A.E, have benefited from the work that the U.A.E government has done to create the perfect tourist destination. Like mushrooms, the luxury hotel sector grew rapidly and had little to do in order to fill their rooms because of the hard work done by the government.
As 2020 approaches, many of the once-booming luxury hotels are now struggling to meet the budget due to the ever-dropping room rates. This is resulting in many of the hotels' top management left scratching their heads because tourists are still visiting the U.A.E, but unlike the past, they are not able to profit from them as they once did.
As the iceberg approaches there is only one course of action, change lanes or hope that your ship is strong enough to compete with the impact. The smart general managers and owners will do the following and have a far better chance of not only surviving but profiting once again.
1. MEDIA COMPANY MENTALITY
For the longest time luxury hotels have been producing content that is less informative or value adding to their community but self-promotional and this has to change. People are adapting to recognize a post that adds no value to them and scroll on.
As a luxury brand, you have to think of content that will add value to your community either by being informational or entertaining or if you have a really great marketing team then, both.
Luxury hotels often post only about their product and services and this is okay but only 20% of the time. The following 80% of your posts need to be creating content that is relevant to the time period we are now in, 2019.
2. RECYCLE YOUR CONTENT
You don’t have to create new content for every media outlet of your organization. Learn to recycle and re-purpose your content. For example, if you make an informative video for YouTube or Facebook then extract the audio and post it as a podcast. Find the most meaningful quotes and add great images and post to Instagram, or post just the quote to Twitter. Look for the management angle and write a post for LinkedIn or even a blog for Medium.
The options are limitless, find creative ways to redistribute your content to the different social media sites.
Time is money and by recycling and re-purposing you can not only stretch the reach of the content but saving time in the process
3. GIVE MORE, ASK LESS.
The key to succeeding in 2019 and beyond is providing more value and asking less for a purchase. Everyone knows that you, like all of your competitors, have the nicest views and most comfortable beds but how can staying at your hotel benefit them and what are you providing to them whilst they are visiting your property that adds value to their lives. Think of whom your target audience is and what do they like to do when they are not staying in your hotel. Start to produce content that is adding massive amounts of value to these areas.
4. CONNECT WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
For the most part, many luxury hotels don’t reply to all the comments of their posts or they reply with a generic response and this is a mistake! Yes the volume of comments and engagement to some posts will be overwhelming but it is crucial that you have your team respond to most, if not all of the comments because this will build a relationship with that commenter and could lead to more sales in the future because you need to remember that even those who have not left a comment on your post, are reading the comment section and your response to the comments or lack thereof can create an immensely positive / negative impact.
5. DO MORE THEN YOUR COMPETITION.
Yes, there are going to be many variables that as a general manager cannot control, but you are completely responsible for the work that you do and the work that your team does. Many general managers won’t put in the time and effort to ensure that their hotel becomes influential online because it’s not the traditional thing to do or mostly because they don’t see online influence as a factor in improving overall sales.
To be influential online is going to take an incredible amount of time and work to begin creating content that adds value and is distributed across multiple social media platforms, but, the general managers who take the time to implement this in their properties are the general managers who are going to succeed moving forward.
I know that many will overlook this article because for many general managers, this article is not going to make sense because for the U.A.E government has done such a great job in creating an environment where all the luxury hotels had to do was open their doors, but the times are changing and the responsibility of succeeding in the luxury hotel market is now in the hands of the general managers and property owners. Building an online brand takes time, patience and most of all consistency but it’s going to be the deciding factor for the hotels that succeed and those that don’t.
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