Guests and customers generally identify themselves with the brand they use and are often loyal to brands that share similar values as them. Guest and customer loyalty to brands make brands successful and profitable. So what is hospitality branding and what are the steps in branding for hotels.
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Fundamentals of Hospitality Branding
What is Branding for hospitality industry
What is Branding - Read the video script here
let’s start right from the beginning as i said we need to understand what is branding why you need it right so let’s start a brand is an image identification of a company that tells the consumer the guest your customer all about your company it is very very strong point and very very important point because it encourages your bookings it encourages your customers to have that trust on your brand and to walk in or book with you it’s a trigger that help people choose you from the ecosystem choose you from the list of unknown brands why because you know you need to actually create a brand and you are not a brand for example then there are various things you have to do around that brand to create what it should be just for an example think of the marriott group marriage group has a logo which has m in it versus another property which has uh which which we cannot identify with so so think from a customer’s point of view will he have more trust in the brand market or a local brand which has not done anything to talk about itself of course your answer i know you will say the answer is definitely definitely marry it right so since you have already given that answer we need to create the study around it you need to learn how how we can do various things the way mariot has done of course with budgets which which which is allowed by our company so branding allows you to drive more traffic bookings as we had the example of marriage versus a local hotel it helps you compete more strongly against all your competitors on the otas i hope you know otas what is this online travel agents like your uh like your uh make my trip like your uh you know various other otas which are already there in the ecosystem of our when we log into our websites respective websites booking.com etc right and it takes control of your message and your online presence so if you are not a brand if people do not trust you people don’t know you the the click on the button of book will not happen my dear friends so that is why branding starts right from there when you’re trying to pull the customer to your property
How to build a brand for hotel?. What is brand story and why its important?
How to Build a Brand | Creating Brand Story
now how to build a successful model brand d as we have discussed and believe the key to branding is to have a very very distinct and unique propositions which defines our brand right and that has to appeal to our top target audience now it is very important for you to be very very clear on who your target audience is suppose your target audience is somebody who wants to stay with you for a very very long time so then service departments would really be handy which is a part of many many hotels now but some guests only come for leisure they come for two days three days four days and they do sightseeing and you know just move out of the property so they come only for vacations or holidays so your property should have all those needs to be fulfilled for that kind of audience so that is why it is very very important to know which market which target audience were tapping and what are the unique things which you are providing to that particular targeted audience whether it is leisure whether it is long staying guest or even a guest who is actually coming for business so all those facilities should be catering to those respected target audience uh category wise so that is very very important
the importance of branding in your hospitality business now in the competitive hospitality industry setting your brand apart you know to establish a firm customer base independently owned hotels as well as chains you can position your hotel hotel or you know your property as as and how it is when you brand it you know on a daily basis or you brand it amongst various tools then your customer registers you he remembers you the next time they need to book or they may need to make up a reservation but if you’re not in the recall list of your customer your target audience which you have already defined then it is very difficult to get him and book with you by making smart choices about the item type branding method monetary expenditures you can find a branding strategy that makes your hospitality company memorable so when i say this line it means that when you’re trying to tap your target audience you need to reach out through various tools based on your internal budgeting of marketing plans which you need to do with you with your teams internally and create a system a very very consistent system wherein you are able to tap that audience on various formats he is using but it is a possibility that your company does not have huge budgets but don’t be worried about it don’t get into any anxiety there is a way to tap even with small budgets so they uh you know as we go deeper into this study we will understand how to do that
so just to touch again you know as to what your style is what your brand is what is the target audience what is your target audience wanting out of you what are the things he likes which you’re providing him what is your service style what is your identity how do you want to position it this is something which your which your management and your teams have to collectively it is actually defined by the management and the teams actually suggest how they have to take it on a longer vision com you know actually fulfilling the mission and the vision but it is very very important to have a clear guidelines as to who is a target audience which area you are tapping and what tools you can use based on the budgeting which you do internally so your brand should stand on its own as i said so when you say that your brand stands on it on its own uh the reason why one says that is that if any customer is closing their eyes and talking about you they should be able to come up with one or two points about you one or two identification marks about you for example if we close our eyes and talk about marriage we know that you know they are into the wedding segment and they have a concept like shady by married you know new concepts like staycation so these are something which they talk aloud in all their studies and all their internal communication in all the external communication through all their collaterals so it is very important to create a unique story about your brand do you want to be very very emotionally connected with your customer then you need to do 10 different things when he walks into your hotel and till he stays with you and leaves your property so it is very very important to have those clear guidelines so that your training modules are aligned with it so connect with your users on an emotional way because that is very important that you need your book because he will remember you and any hotel or any property which does connect which is not emotional it does not get any engagement with that user so therefore he is open he is open to try new properties next time but if there is a person who is loyal to marriage or hired there is a reason behind it of course the privileged card process is a hook for him but at the same time when he walks into the property he’s acknowledged he’s addressed by his first theme so that emotional touch is very very important for any property whether it is small or big so create that environment which is interesting which is engaging because that defines your brand as well means it should be based on the the story of your own brand so you may have been a heritage hotel you may be in a cultural hotel you may be a business hotel with that with the elegance or so it basically it will your brand story should be aligning with the design perspective also the service standards and should be enabled to make an emotional connect with your customers that i understand
yeah so it’s not just brand style it’s a brand personality you can say because who am i as a property you know so that is a brand personality so that definitely talks about the brand story so in a way these are different lingos but it talks about the same thing in various ways you want to express so brand personality is very very important because who am i you know whether it is a business hotel or even in a business hotel i’m talking to these customers but then leisure customer also how am i talking am i getting into the space getting more friendlier with them doing a lot of things for their kids so that the couple is free to do a set of things so all those things have to be aligned first of all done on your drawing board and then once you go into on on the drawing board you have to actually do it practically because you have to come up with plans which are aligning with your uh paperwork so once you’ve defined you know what are the points you want to do and you want to capture and then you make programs to deal with it right so it’s not just on paper then it is on the real playground also the real thing is visible in the property
what are the steps in Branding for a hotel
4 Steps in creating a Hotel Brand
uh my dear friends as we have already discussed that you know to work around your brand personality you have already defined your target group by now you know who your customer is you know that it is very important to address uh what he wants right in the hotel space then once he walks into your hotel and even before that when he actually makes a choice for your property so one we have already done figure out who you are so as a personality i know what my hotel stands for that is very very important there are key messages which have to be developed on that personality which you have already nailed down now that personality is not going to change for a certain period of time so create messages around it then effective public relations and marketing around it but taking all these three points together you have to carry the messaging in a consistent way i’ll just give an example for example if there is a property which is only catering to families families have a couple they have old people who are coming together as families and they have kids now i have defined my property as a property which will cater to the families now coming back to the second point are there key messages which are developed are am i talking about it on my website am i talking about it on the social media platform am i communicating well to my uh you know online travel agencies who are helping me get the customer in am i actually talking to the traditional sales people who are going and pitching for my property in terms of business is the messaging right is the messaging right in the brochures which i am communicating are there enough pictures to support what i’m talking are there enough videos to support that i’m a safe place for a family of every age group so all those things have to be tick marked and then you can say that you are ready are you doing some special programs for old people to be engaged if they are coming together as a big family are you doing something for the couples are you doing something for kids to be exchanged you know really to be busy so all these steps have to be done uh at the ground level just saying that and defining that this is my property is not enough you have to have messaging and implementation plans on the ground level as well and then promote it through marketing through various tools based on the budgets you have at the same time when you’re doing this you have to do it consistently once uh you know if we design something a package or a campaign it does not mean that we do not do it for the next six months we carry it on for 15 days and we stay silent for the next three months to six months no then you will lose out the market share in the market there might be somebody else to pitch for this space and uh i am sorry but then you will lose out so all your efforts which you have done to create this beautiful campaign to reach out to these families we’ll just lose out people will people have this tendency to forget very easily so we have to keep uh i would say been pinching them off and on and on a regular interval of time too much is also bad but too little is also bad so you have to have a balance between the four
Branding should be to a specific market Segment
Branding to a Specific Market Segment and customer profile
so coming back uh and reiterating what we’ve been saying that brand to a specific market segment because then your focus is there all your marketing tools are aligned and you know what you’re talking you’re not actually hitting the bullet in dark you actually hitting the bullet to a particular target so the target is very important which you have already defined by now instead of being nothing to everybody be something for few people only build your brand with this audience for example if you’re targeting the millennials emphasize the cutting edge design and digital facilities because millennials are digital savvy a family as we have already discussed good focus you need to focus on the child care facilities play areas if they’re old people you have to cater to them if there are young couples you have to have some engagements around them and in the evening have some social you know folk dance or cultural dance so that they get occupied because you are a family hotel so this is one example but then you can be a mice property which is which means that you’re catering to uh corporates for getting their conferencing in so for that you need all the facilities which a conference hotel should have which anything to do with conferencing on a smoother seamless manner so all those technologies have to be in place and likewise if you are a wedding hotel which means that you are mainly focusing on biddings in your property so then you need to cater to their needs as well so everything having said that every target book has a different need based list checklist so that checklist has to be defined once you have already defined who you want to cater to