For years, email marketing has been a reliable and evergreen tool for businesses when it comes to connecting with their subscribers effectively. And this is no different for the hospitality industry. Email marketing is a fantastic way for hotels to promote their brand, engage with subscribers, and ultimately increase bookings.

It can be difficult to decide which campaigns to run, especially if you're a smaller hotel with fewer resources than the larger chain brands. However, it's well worth the investment. Whether your goal is to boost revenue, strengthen relationships, or enhance your guests' overall experience, your email marketing strategy can make the biggest difference in your business goals. To get you started on your email strategy, here are 9 email marketing campaigns your hotel should run.

1. Welcome Series for New Subscribers

The 'Welcome Series' is an essential part of any successful hotel email marketing strategy. On the one hand, it leaves a lasting positive first impression. On the other, it allows you to introduce your brand and highlight the amenities your hotel offers.

When new subscribers sign up for your emails, they are showing interest in your hotel. Even if they may not have booked with you yet, a welcome email can help you begin to establish a relationship with them. It's an amazing chance to introduce your hotel, provide information about amenities, and offer future guests helpful tips for planning their stay. By taking this opportunity to engage with your subscribers in a way that is relevant and valuable to them, you will build trust and credibility.

Welcome emails can also be used to share helpful information about your hotel and the local area. You can offer recommendations for nearby restaurants, attractions, and activities. This provides value for your readers and improves the overall customer experience. And by engaging with your subscribers and providing tailored content, you make them more likely to book a stay at your hotel.

A welcome sign hung up on a door.
Use your welcome email as an opportunity to get your subscribers familiar with your hotel and your area.

2. Promotional Campaigns and Exclusive Offers

Discounted rates for early bookings and seasonal promotions are increasingly popular and lucrative in terms of boosting revenue. Incorporating these types of promotions into your hotel's email marketing campaigns can have a significant impact on your conversion rate. On top of that, providing attractive deals and exclusive offers is an excellent strategy for attracting both new and returning guests.

Your hotel can also create promotional campaigns with discount codes and flash sales to push potential guests to book. These limited-time offers create a sense of urgency, motivating subscribers to book their stays before the deals disappear. And it doesn't stop there—promoting exclusive offers for luxury packages and upgrades can also increase revenue and encourage subscribers to spend more. These types of promotions create a sense of exclusivity that guests may be willing to pay extra for.

A website message that promises 10% discount for email marketing subscribers.
You can also attract more newsletter subscribers by offering them discount codes in exchange for their subscription.

3. Abandoned Booking Reminders

Abandoned bookings are a significant challenge for hoteliers. They result in lost revenue and missed opportunities to engage potential guests. Thankfully, your hotel can automate abandoned booking reminders to encourage guests to complete their bookings. If you want to make it even more convincing, you can also add incentives like room upgrades and discounts. With these reminders, your hotel can re-engage potential guests and bring them back into the booking process. Like this, you will increase your conversion, and catch potentially lost revenue for your hotel.

Plus, abandoned booking reminders can help you understand why guests abandon their carts. Whether they didn't have time to book then or just needed an extra push, you can try out different strategies and see what brings more guests back to their bookings. Use this information to then optimize the booking process, identify common user pain points, and improve the overall booking experience for potential guests.

An email mock-up of an abandoned booking reminder email campaign.
With abandoned booking reminders, you can make it easy for guests to return and complete their bookings.

4. Pre-Arrival Emails

Sending pre-arrival emails to guests is an important part of the customer journey and your email marketing strategy. Giving guests the information they need before they even set foot in your hotel will make for an easier check-in process. On top of that, it will make guests more satisfied with their overall experience, and create stronger loyalty.

These emails can cover various information—from check-in times to room details, breakfast options, and nearby attractions. You can even include instructions on how to reach your property. By sharing all this information, guests will feel more at ease about their upcoming trip.

On top of that, you can use pre-arrival emails to offer personalized services. Think room service menus, welcome drinks, and snacks. It's a great way to have a little chat with guests before they arrive, so you can discuss any requests or preferences they might have. This way, you can make all the necessary arrangements in advance. And as for guests, they will have a truly comfortable stay.

A tray with coffee and a snack set on a wooden table.
A pre-arrival email can help guests let you know how you can accommodate them better as soon as they arrive, like preparing them a coffee in advance after a long journey.

5. Post-Stay Emails

Post-stay emails are an effective way for hotels to gather feedback and show appreciation to their guests. It's best to encourage guests to leave reviews and ratings shortly after their stay when the experience is fresh in their minds. On top of that, you can also offer personalized rewards for future bookings. Through this, you can establish a personal connection with your guests and let them know that you value their experiences. However, it's not just about rewards. These emails also give guests a chance to share their thoughts, suggestions and comments. As a result, you can make important improvements and better meet guest needs in the future.

Plus, post-stay emails are a great opportunity to offer personalised services in the future. Use the information you collected throughout guests' stay to send tailored messages, recommendations and to offer a more personalized guest experience. Do they have a dog? Update them on your pet-friendly offers. Have they requested only vegan breakfast? Send them updates on your vegan menu. Don't be afraid to use these insights.

When hotels prioritize guest satisfaction and keep guests in the loop about deals and promotions, it encourages them to return. Ultimately, these email marketing campaigns provide valuable insights into guest experiences, leading to improved customer satisfaction, loyalty, and long-term benefits for the hotel.

Use post-stay emails to also give a last push for your guests to talk about their experiences. For example, encouraging your guests to share about their stay on social media can significantly amplify your online visibility and reputation. When guests post about their positive experiences, it acts as social proof, instilling trust and credibility among prospective guests. Offering incentives, such as discounted stays or loyalty points for social media posts, can be a proactive strategy to stimulate this valuable word-of-mouth marketing.

Person waving their hand.
The relationship with your guest doesn't end the moment they leave your property—it can continue after through post-stay emails.

6. Upselling and Cross-selling Campaigns

Upselling and cross-selling campaigns are effective methods to promote additional services and room upgrades. Not only will you improve your guests' stay, but you can also get additional revenue.

Tailor suggestions based on their interests, and you can persuade guests to consider options they may not have initially thought about. This could be offering discounted rates on luxury suites, add-on packages for fitness and well-being, or transportation services. With cross-selling campaigns, you can aim to offer guests products and services beyond the obvious. Consider special meal arrangements for different dietary needs, local sightseeing activities, or spa facilities for relaxation. For example, if they are booking spa entry at your hotel, you can aim to upsell a one-night stay. Or, you might offer a discount for lunch at your restaurant.

Incorporating upselling and cross-selling campaigns into email marketing efforts can do wonders. It allows hotels to convert guest interest into sales, driving more bookings and increasing revenue per guest. On top of that, guests will also have a better overall experience. As a result, you'll be able to build a more loyal customer base, encourage repeat visits, and improve their reputation.

A person getting a facial cleanse.
Take the insights you know about your guests and use them to upsell in your email marketing campaigns.

7. Loyalty and Rewards Programs

Loyalty and rewards programs are great for keeping their current customers engaged, and even attracting new ones. These programs give guests a reason to come back to your hotel and use the rewards they've earned with you. Keep your guests regularly informed about the program, its benefits, upcoming promotions and rewards. This will show them the value of becoming a return customer and building loyalty.

Travellers love to earn rewards. Room upgrades, spa treatments and free breakfasts will entice customers to keep coming back. And as they do, they will have a better experience every single time. When done correctly with a well-structured loyalty program, hotel email campaigns can create a strong partnership with subscribers.

Person looking outside the window of a hotel room.
Encourage your guests to return by offering perks such as room upgrades.

8. Event and Special Occasion Emails

Sending event and special occasion emails can be a valuable strategy for hotels to promote their services and attract different types of customers. If you boast great event rooms, you're in luck. You can send out emails with packages tailored to specific events, like weddings.

However, you can still make sure of holidays and local festivities to craft attractive offers for your newsletter subscribers. If your city celebrates any major event, showcase your hotel as the best place to spend a few nights while celebrating. This can help you market your hotel within the context of your local community. It shows that you care about more than just your guests, but also the wider community.

And if you want to create offers for international holidays (like Easter and Christmas), an email is the best way to let your subscribers know that you're there to celebrate big holidays with them. This not only helps you market your services effectively but also strengthens your relationship with guests and creates positive word-of-mouth.

Two people walking in a luxurious hotel lobby, in front of a bellboy.
Any special occasion can be an opportunity for your newsletter subscribers to visit your property.

9. Re-Engagement Campaigns for Inactive Subscribers

Do not forget about your inactive subscribers—even though you may think they're not interested in your hotel anymore. Inactive subscribers can turn into valuable guests, even if you haven't heard from them in a while. By creating a targeted re-engagement campaign, you can remind them of the benefits they'll receive when staying at your hotel. You can even offer special promotions or upgrades to bring them back! On top of that, adding a level of personalization can significantly increases the chances of subscribers engaging back and, ultimately, making a booking.

The beauty of re-engagement campaigns is that they save money and resources. Instead of investing in acquiring new subscribers, you can concentrate on developing and tailoring content for the subscribers you already have a relationship with.

Person in front of a computer, looking uninterested.
Get your inactive subscribers engaged again with a campaign meant to stop them in their tracks.

Ready to send out some emails?

In the world of hospitality, leveraging effective email campaigns is the key to driving revenue and enhancing guest relationships. When executed correctly, these campaigns offer more than just cost-effectiveness; they enable hotels to significantly improve the overall customer experience.

Testing different types of emails and closely tracking their effectiveness is crucial to refining your email marketing strategy. This could involve A/B testing different subject lines, email designs, or content to see which yield the best open rates, click-through rates, and conversions. By leveraging analytical tools, you can gather invaluable insights, make data-driven decisions, and continuously optimize your campaigns to maximize their impact.

By implementing these essential campaigns, hotels can harness their potential to not only boost revenue but also foster long-lasting relationships with guests. When done correctly, they can be cost-effective and improve the overall customer experience, drive direct bookings, attract new guests, and keep the loyal ones coming back for more.

Jul 26, 2023
Trends and Insights
Written by
Hotelchamp Team