Okay, so it may only be September and Christmas is probably the last thing you want to be thinking about as a hotelier, but now is the best time to prepare for the festive period. The reason is simple: with so much modern day competition for rooms and inventive accommodation experiences, you need to plan ahead if you want to ensure that Christmas is a bumper event for your hotel.

Thankfully, there’s lots you can do to tempt festive guests through your doors without donning a Father Christmas outfit or spending a fortune dusting your property in fake snow.

Here’s five Christmas hotel marketing ideas you may not have considered.

Harness the power of email marketing

If you’re not using email marketing as a hotelier, you’re missing out, big time. It’s one of the best ways to get into the minds of potential guests. Providing you’ve been ethically collecting the email addresses of past guests, now is the time to start drip-feeding them your Christmas offers.

Whether it’s a special stay package or opportunity to have Christmas Dinner in your restaurant, create a Christmas email series now to slowly raise their interest levels.

Run a festive contest

People love contests – it’s why we see so many polls on social media and hashtag challenges in our feeds (even if there’s no prize at the end of it). When it comes to hotel marketing, contests are a great way to get some user-generated content for your marketing campaigns.

Why not ask people to send in photos of their worst Christmas jumpers or best home decoration in return for an entry into a prize draw for a discounted stay at your hotel? You’ll be surprised by how many people bite, and it’s great fodder for your social media channels.

Put together a Christmas deal or two

Sometimes, the simplest ideas are the best, and there’s nothing wrong with running a good, old-fashioned series of Christmas deals at your hotel. Guests will be looking to spend a little less this Christmas thanks to present bills and the frequency with which they eat and dine out over the festive period. That means a welcome saving on your standard room rate or reduced two-night festive break might just pique their interest.

Advertising such deals on social media will also give you the opportunity to gain plenty of shares and likes if the deal is particularly inventive or of significant value. What have you got to lose? Try it!

Create a separate Christmas deal landing page

If you decide to follow our advice in tip 3, it’s vitally important you create a separate, festive landing page on your website. This will give you a separate area of the site to market and on which to place your Christmas deals.

Bury your Christmas packages and offers within your existing room rates, and people are far less likely to find them. And, besides, if you have a dedicated festive area, you can have a bit of fun by adding snow, Rudolph dancing across the sky and a cheeky Santa hat on your logo.

Think F&B

Christmas at your hotel doesn’t have to be solely about accommodation; what about your bar and restaurant? By putting together a Christmas menu (for both food and drink), you’ll capture the festive spirit of anyone who fancies treating the family or booking a Christmas meal for the business.

And you never know – those F&B bookings might just turn into room bookings if you offer to throw in a cheaper night’s stay as part of the package!

Wrapping up

Christmas shouldn’t be a time that’s feared by hoteliers. On the contrary, it could be your most profitable period – providing you start planning now.

CMS Hospitality holds over 30 years of experience in delivering hospitality software solutions. GuestCentrix offers the most complete solution in hospitality software, whether you’re running a hotel, a resort or a hostel. Our highly experienced support and installations team holds a unique understanding of the hospitality industry and will aim to provide software that suits your property’s needs.

Call us today at (+61) 2 9440 9711, or email us at sales@cmshospitality.com. We will be happy to guide you to the GuestCentrix solution that’s right for you.