Along the path to conversion and successful revenue optimization a constant stream of new potential guests to your owned digital channels is a critical piece. The acquisition stage of the lifetime value process gives means to ensure this constant stream with an effective cross-channel marketing strategy. Many elements of acquisition strategies work in tandem with engagement tools which will be discussed further in a later post. Some specific tools for acquisition fall amongst the most common acquisition strategies.
Acquisition channels work alongside one another to acquire new traffic to hotel websites and potential ultimate bookers., but how do you know if they are working? Acquisition strategies are meant to drive users who might convert, not only those who were already guaranteed to convert. This paired with the challenges of cross-device attribution means that judging your acquisition strategy effectiveness soley on revenue generated isn’t enough. If your organization started on the same page with your strategy, everyone should agree that other goals matter as well. Acquisition success metrics beyond revenue should include some of the following:
- An increase in overall traffic aligned with an increase in engagement. If your website users are still visiting multiple pages of the site and taking the time to check rates in your booking engine, you have acquired quality traffic.
- Stabilized source contribution percentages. If you are seeing the percentages of traffic from paid, organic and direct sources remaining relatively flat while totals increase across all channels, your acquisition efforts are working in tandem to improve your funnel successfully. If paid traffic is going up without other sources following suit on the other hand, you may be spending poorly.
- Brand traffic increases. The goal of acquisition is to expand awareness and conversion. If you don’t have more users searching for your brand name, engaging with your branded content and talking about your brand, then you aren’t acquiring enough quality awareness through your efforts.
- Revenue is up. Revenue can’t be the only metric in acquisition, but it still has to be a significant one. It is very possible that if goals one, two and three are being met that your conversion strategy not your acquisition strategy is missing the mark, but it can also mean that your strategies aren’t attracting users who are in the right segment of your product. For example, before you turn to discounting, make sure your strategies are capturing the right demographic for your price point.
While in a perfect world, your campaigns would immediately fire on all cylinders, this is rarely the case. One of the biggest mistakes hoteliers can make though is to walk away from a promising strategy before giving it a chance to succeed. It is important to work with your partners to drill down on the segments of your campaigns, refine the conversion strategy and make general adjustments before shouting uncle. The next step of the lifetime value process is to engage the users acquired through all of these channels towards ongoing conversions.
TRI Hospitality helps hotel organizations review and maximize their acquisition programs. This includes in depth analysis of performance, action plans and optimization strategies, collaboration with vendors and renegotiating partnerships to ensure mutually beneficial relationships.