Navigating the Buyer's Journey

Embark on a marketing road trip! Explore the buyer's journey from awareness to retention and learn to guide your customers booking.

January 31, 2024

Before Guests Even Pack, The Journey has Begun.

Alright, my friends, it's time to embark on an exciting adventure - the journey of your buyer. Think of it as a road trip, with you in the driver's seat, guiding your guest from the first glimpse of your property to the finish line of a booking. Let's fuel up on knowledge and navigate through this journey together!

Defining the Buyer's Journey

Your Map to Success

No matter what the product, every buyer, goes through this purchase journey

The buyer's journey is your customer's process before they click 'book now.' It's like a roadmap, with stops from awareness to retention, commonly pictured as a funnel. But not every journey looks the same, just like not all road trips follow the same route. The property, industry, and your customer's previous experience with your property, brand, or competitor influence the journey.

Unpacking the Journey

1. Awareness - Welcome Signs to Your Property

wow your customers

Imagine a potential guest realizes they have a problem. They need a place to stay. Your property pops up as a potential place for them to stay. You're introducing your brand or property to the customer like a welcome sign to the destination. That's the awareness stage, where visibility and recognition are your main goals.

  • For example: During the awareness stage, a hotel might create blog posts or social media content about local attractions or events to attract potential guests who are interested in visiting the area.

2. Interest - Highlighting Attractions

Next, your potential guest wants to know more about how you can solve their problem of finding the ideal location stay. They're curious and eager to learn, eyeing local attractions and area services. This is the interest stage, where you provide valuable content like reviews, blogs, and social media posts.

3. Consideration - Which Place to Choose

At the consideration stage, your customer has several brands or places to stay in mind, and yours is one of them. It's your job to stand out and show why your property is the best fit. This could involve comparing prices, reading reviews, and checking availability. To optimize this stage, hospitality businesses can provide detailed information about their offerings, including pricing, amenities, and nearby attractions.

  • Consideration stage: A guest might compare different hotel options based on amenities, location, and price before making a decision on where to book.

4. Conversion - Booking Their Stay

Now, your customer is ready to buy. They've done their research and decided your property is the best solution. Like purchasing a ticket to their chosen city, it's your task to make the buying process smooth and attractive. Targeting, retargeting, and creating a sense of urgency can all be helpful here.

  • The Conversion or Decision stage: Once a guest has decided on a hotel, they might use the hotel's website or mobile app to easily book their stay and receive confirmation.
  • To optimize this stage, hospitality businesses can offer incentives such as discounts or loyalty rewards.

5. Retention - Winning Returning Guests

Finally, there's the retention stage. This could involve providing excellent customer service, offering personalized recommendations, and responding promptly to any issues or concerns.  This could involve providing excellent customer service, offering personalized recommendations, and responding promptly to any issues or concerns. It's not just about getting guests to visit the area; you want them to love it so much that they keep coming back! Once a guest has stayed once, keep them connected to your brand or property.

  • Retention stage: During a guest's stay, the hotel might offer personalized experiences such as room upgrades or dining recommendations to ensure a positive experience.
  • This could involve providing excellent customer service, offering personalized recommendations, and responding promptly to any issues or concerns. To optimize this stage, hospitality businesses can use data analytics to track customer behavior and preferences.

6. Loyalty - Your Best Promoter

Finally, the loyalty stage is when customers become advocates for your property. To optimize this stage, you should continue to provide excellent guest service, personalized experiences, and loyalty programs.

You can also encourage customers to leave reviews, refer friends, and share their experiences on social media.

Customizing Your Guests' Journey with SMART Goals

To create your unique buyer's journey, use SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-Bound) goals and research to add precision to your strategy. It's all about attracting the right guests to your vacation rental, hotel, or inn, giving them what they need for a memorable visit.

Ready to Map Out Your Buyer's Journey?

Feeling excited to take the wheel and drive your customers through their journey? Smart Pineapple provides you with the tools to develop your marketing messages easily within a few clicks.

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