How can you improve your use of email communications across your customer lifecycle to get better results for your business?
Email marketing is still one of the best ways to deliver targeted, relevant messages to prospective guests or customers.
Anytime Booking can help you to stand out in the inbox across your customer lifecycle. Our e-marketing module allows you to segment and target your customers to tell them about your latest offerings and entice them back in for another stay.
The benefits of using email marketing
It’s cost effective
Easily one of the most obvious benefits of email marketing is its lower cost compared to mainstream marketing channels. You pay £10 base rate + 2p per email for each campaign you send out but these costs are still far lower than what you would be paying using other marketing channels.
Target your fans
Your customers opt in to email marketing, so you are already in an advantageous position. You should see a much higher conversion rate using this marketing method as you are only targeting those who already have an interest in your holiday brand.
Segmentation gets the right message to the right people
If you gather information about your guests you can harness that information to only send emails to subscribers who meet certain criteria. You can send an offer to subscribers who live in certain areas of the country, to couples, or to those guests who have brought pets in the past, for example. Studies have shown that this marketing tactic often results in improved engagement rates.
A call to action invites a greater response
Email marketing is great for taking your customer from enticing offer to a purchase within a few clicks of a button. With a tempting call to action (“four nights for the price of three”) and a link straight to the checkout booking process, email newsletters can push sales into your till like no other channel.
Design and technology skills needn’t be a barrier to output
You don’t need to be a technical whizz, you can use the templates to easily drag and drop content and images to create a quick and easy campaign. The textual content of an email is the most important thing, not necessarily how beautiful it looks.
You can automate, track and evaluate your emails, including click-through and conversion rates. This in turn will give you ideas on how a campaign can be improved. You can also make changes immediately too – not so with broadcasting or print!
Easy to share, with global reach
Your subscribers can forward any of your offerings to their friends at the click of a button, with no geographical boundaries. There aren’t many other types of marketing that can be shared as easily as this, other than social media, which is harder to target. Your current fans can effectively introduce your business to a new market.
Right here, right now
Due to the immediacy of email, you can start seeing results within moments of an email being sent, right down to who is opening it. A ‘limited time only’ sale, for example, is a fantastic marketing opportunity that can be pushed out by email, creating a sense of urgency and persuading your subscribers to take immediate action.
Return on investment
In 2011, the Direct Marketing Association estimated that email marketing typically returns £40 for every £1 invested. With this kind of track record, why not adopt it as a regular marketing channel for your business?
Anytime Booking loves to support all things camping, so if you run a holiday park, glampsite or campsite, we can now give your customers another avenue through which to find their dream outdoor holiday with you by teaming up with the amazing Caravan Sitefinder.
Caravan Sitefinder is an online travel agent (OTA) based in Edinburgh that allows holidaymakers to search over 3,600 campsites, caravan parks and holiday parks around the UK. They are a huge, powerful resource to tap into. It’s simple really. Guests are searching their site to book their holiday, so it’s a good idea to make sure that they find you quickly and easily.
What does this mean for Anytime Booking customers?
· You can easily increase your visibility in the touring, caravanning and camping markets
· Use a targeted channel through which to increase your bookings
· They will help you sell any empty space
· Enjoy a 2Way sync which updates pricing, availability and booking information
If you are a current customer and want to be an early adopter of this exciting new offering, give us a bell so that we can give you more information to help you decide if you want to connect to this sales channel.
If you are new to us and want to sign up to Anytime Booking in order to take bookings through your website and via Caravan Sitefinder or any of our other channels, such as Pitchup, Tripadvisor or Rentals United, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are you a holiday park or campsite wanting to stand out from the crowd and to raise the level of customer service you offer even further? Then we have an exciting new venture that might be of interest to you! We have launched a new partnership with another award-winning Cornish business based in Penryn, called the Clear Mapping Company, www.clearmapping.co.uk.
With customers getting more particular about the kind of service or information they expect to access online, it’s worth looking at ways to keep them coming back to you. By incorporating the Clear Mapping Company’s beautiful and functional maps with the flexible booking and management software of Anytime Booking, we are able to provide a complete, gold standard booking solution for online visitors. Once we work our technical magic and make any site or area maps commissioned by you, interactive on your website. Your guests can choose their plots and complete the booking for their whole holiday directly through your interactive sitemap online.
You can even go the extra mile and have the maps printed up into leaflets to distribute to your guests on site to give them the lie of the land and some potted information about your facilities.
Little Winnick Touring Park provides a great example of how our new collaboration has been of benefit. “The Clear Mapping Company maps and Anytime Booking system have helped enormously in the day-to-day running of the business, which gives us more time to be a family,” said Heidi, Little Winnick Touring Park.
Please take a look at Richard and Heidi’s video about how this approach is working for them: http://bit.ly/1Shy6gJ.
Prices for a Clear Mapping site-map vary depending on your requirements and the technical integration into your Anytime Booking system start from £300. If you would like any further information on how to start the ball rolling to get a new sitemap drawn up for your business and integrated into our forward-thinking booking system, please do get in touch.
More personality, less formality
Reinvention is a word of the moment – and even the travel industry is joining in. There has been a huge rise of accommodation providers repositioning their businesses as homely, approachable, relaxed and earthy, without sacrificing quality or luxury. Why?
Because travellers seem less trusting of the ‘big boys’ – the bland hotel chains – and are choosing smaller, more unique places to stay to satisfy their need for something a little bit ‘different’, while conversely remaining ‘familiar’, and with more individual care.
‘Wellness’ is a buzzword right now, it’s about making choices that are good for you. People put wellness in their coffee, have it on their toast, wear it, consume it, and expect to stay somewhere that promotes it. The domestic market has upgraded in this respect, and staycationing clientele are putting a lot more money into the UK economy than ever before.
So holiday businesses have been looking more closely at what makes people tick – what they enjoy or care about at home, such as the environment, sustainability, local or home-grown produce – and transporting this back into their businesses, taking the time to ‘put the love back’, banishing the stuffiness and formality that have come to be associated with big hotel chains.
This is timely. While the staycation phenomenon is admittedly not as strong as in 2014-15, it still boasts higher figures than pre-recession. Falling oil prices mean that people are far more likely to put fuel in their car to go on their breaks, especially short-breaks, in the UK. Yes, oil prices also mean that it’s cheaper to jump on board a flight to foreign shores, but the security issues abroad of late balance out the scales between UK and international travel.
Visiting friends and relatives (VFR) is also consistently on the rise, by approximately 10% year on year, which means that many businesses are enjoying the bolt-on short-break holidays associated with this – a bonus for UK accommodation providers. It pays for them to ride this wave and to make sure the experience they offer matches up to leisure seekers’ expectations.
So what do today’s travellers expect?
Travellers are asking for more online transparency when they book holidays; they don’t want to have to go backwards and forwards via phonecalls and emails to secure their bookings anymore. Instant connectivity in all locations is also expected when they get there. They are increasingly turning away from holidays if they do not offer WiFi.
If you are an accommodation provider, it is advisable that you think about adapting to these pressures and consider advancing your WiFi connectivity, developing a responsive website, and installing a seamless, front-end online booking process. If you are more at the cottage end of the market, you could even upgrade the technology you offer on site, such as availability of good TVs, satellite, and mp3 players.
Guests generally want more choice, more flexibility, and authentic yet connected experiences. What’s more, they want these expectations to be managed from the outset. A place to stay must build the atmosphere from the very beginning – a guest will be asking, ‘will this place be able to satisfy me, will it live up to my expectations?’ from the moment they start browsing.
If there is no online booking system or a responsive website with truthful, hearty lifestyle photography and clear messages about what the holiday will deliver, the chances are, the guest will think it can’t. They expect to be put first and don’t like it if they are not. Accommodation owners can look into improving these areas to dramatically reduce turn-aways from potential guests and therefore any loss of precious revenue. It is crucial to get up and running with online bookings.
Let technology be your friend in business
If you are a holiday business of any kind, the actual technology does not need to be a barrier to your visibility on the web. Anytime Booking is a young traveltech company and we’re here to help you every step of the way to taking online bookings. We are real people behind the science!
Our booking and site management software gives you the flexibility to run your business your way. You can use it as a simple reservation system to verify the bookings yourself, or you can accept instant online bookings together with payment straight away.
When you come on board, our Account Coordinators are on hand to advise you of the best possible way to configure your accommodation on the system to mirror your business rules, giving you peace of mind that you are getting it right for your customers.
Are you an accommodation provider ready to take the next step? Sign up to Anytime Booking now.
Anytime Booking has launched a fully responsive booking process
By our standards, size really does matter – your customers will now be able to find you and a book a holiday on any size device, from the tiniest mobile phone to the latest tablet, laptop or home PC.
“In 2013, worldwide mobile phone internet user penetration was 73.4%. In 2017, figures suggest that more than 90% of internet users will access online content through their phones” – Statista, The Statistics Portal
Why is this important?
It helps you stay ahead of the game.
The way people are now viewing websites and consuming online information means we all need to be considering how we engage with the outside world to offer the best online experience for our various brands and services.
Paying customers expect to be able to book and pay for a holiday online, from anywhere and often on the move. They might be sitting in a pub, or round at a friend’s house, or just sitting on their sofa at home, browsing for a holiday on their smartphone and bingo, inspiration strikes. They want that holiday, and they want it now.
It is important that they can book and make a transaction without the need to pinch their screens, without falling off the edge altogether or losing their ‘Pay Now’ button. This will just end in frustration and a no-sale.
If you get it right, you won’t lose business.
Benefits of having a responsive booking system:
- Future proof your business
- Offer a smarter, better, faster, user experience
- Increase your accessibility and competitive edge
- Increase conversion rates and therefore revenue
- Improve your SEO rankings (since April 2015, websites that are not optimised for mobile appear lower down on Google’s search rankings)
What if I am already an Anytime Booking customer?
Talk to us today about upgrading your account by emailing email@example.com. If you go for it, your customers will thank you for it.