Recently, we hosted a Lunch & Learn in Estes Park, CO to share tricks of the hospitality trade. Our office was pretty quiet as Christian, Josh, Lyles, Joe, Liz, and Vanessa headed northwest to share their expertise in different subjects with clients.
It was exciting seeing our clients face-to-face and getting to share our favorite tips as it concerns website design, internet marketing, lodging photography, the Cloud PMS, and technical support.
We had such a great time providing information at our roundtables that we wanted to write a quick recap here:
Cloud reservation software roundtable: Here, Josh focused on showing the Cloud-based software, features it has and how easy it is to use. Attendees wanted to know when it’ll be available or if they can Beta test, how they can convert their data from RezPro, third party integration such as InnLink and the GDS, and the price. As for a roll-out date, we’re still working through Beta testing to ensure a smooth roll-out with a product that’s ready for your business.
Internet marketing roundtable: Liz talked about the importance of investing in your online presence, making sure your website is performing well and increasing exposure through SEO and PPC. Liz recommends these tactics as they are the top two resources travelers use when reserving lodging, see the Google Insights image below. Once you’ve gotten visitors to land on your site, make their experience better by investing in a responsive design so the website looks good on any device, desktop to tablet or mobile. More travelers are booking via their smartphones (see the eMarketer headline below) and if your website doesn’t play nice with mobile it’ll be harder to capture that audience. Another way to capture your audience’s attention is to send targeted email campaigns to fill “need periods” that offers an incentive.
Lodging websites roundtable: Lyles discussed what website’s need to have today to be competitive online. Lyles reaffirmed that sites need to be responsive, they should be a Content Management System (CMS), have multiple ways to access your booking engine, and implement tracking to see where your visitors go on your site to find out what information they’re looking for, and links to social networks.
Visual imagery roundtable: Joe took the lead on sharing photography and videography information, where he showed attendees what photos are going to attract guests to your property and what photos might deter people from booking. Joe emphasized that when working with a professional photographer, it’s a good idea to get your important shots done first. You should focus on exterior shots and the bedroom area of a room first, as that’s what grabs online visitors’ attention. Another tool that captures their attention is a video. To learn more about the planning process of a video, we recommend contacting Joe directly.
We also had a technical support representative available to answer questions regarding the current version of the software or advice on common troubleshooting issues.
We’ve already started drafting ideas for our next Lunch & Learn event and we’d love to know what topics you’d be interested in learning more about. Tell us below in the comments section.