“Ignoring online marketing is like opening a business but not telling anyone.”
No one knows who said this immortal line, but it’s come to epitomise the attitude and mission of most digital marketing agencies in essex and beyond. The lesson is simple: building a business means nothing if you don’t have the right marketing behind it to help it grow.
And nowhere is this more apparent than in the hospitality industry, where your lack of trade is made abundantly apparent to you in empty restaurants, vacant hotels, or sparsely-visited events. Online marketing in essex will help you avoid these unpleasant loss-accruing situations – building instead a reliable source of custom and profits all year-round.
Why Market Online?
There are two simple reasons why you need to market your hospitality business online this year: it’s where you’ll find new customers and higher profits; and it’s also a space that’s relatively uncompetitive in essex today. Let’s take these reasons one by one.
New Customers, Higher Profits
The UK happens to be one of the most digitally-connected nations on earth.
An incredible 99% of the UK uses social media. A similar amount – 98.5% – own a smartphone through which they access the internet on a daily basis. The average UK citizen uses their social media for three hours per day – and that’s just one corner of the online world you can talk to.
Clearly, there’s huge space for a digital marketing agency essex to help promote hospitality firms across the city. The whole of essex is online and consuming content. They’re there to secure as customers, guests, and visitors – helping you boost your profits.
“Courteous treatment will make a customer a walking advertisement.” – James Cash Penney
Relative Lack of Competition
Meanwhile, we’ve seen through our own experience how important marketing and customer experiences can be for hospitality firms in the UK and the US – which tend to live or die upon the level of service they provide.
In essex, customer expectations are incredibly high – and service needs to be spot-on. Your restaurant needs to impress as a five-star venue; your hotel has to go the extra mile in every way.
But, despite these requirements, essex web design and essex SEO remain uncompetitive compared to other Western markets. Standards are lower online, with poorer websites and less impressive marketing.
What does this mean? Well, it means that smart business leaders in the events, hospitality and hotelier space should see an opportunity here. By partnering with one of the best digital marketing agencies in essex, you can create marketing content that reflects your business’ prestige, professionalism, and passion – and in doing so, outcompete your rivals in showing off your venue.
The Best Marketing Strategies
There are several strategies for marketing that we currently view as optimal for hospitality firms looking to expand their reach and influence in essex. We’re constantly updating this list, and responding to developments in the field, in order to offer you the cutting edge of marketing – specifically for the UK area and the Google.co.uk domain. Our list includes:
- Content Marketing. Using words, films, images, animations, and illustrations to tell a story about your brand and your services.
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Climb higher in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) to get seen by more and more essex consumers.
- Social Media Marketing. essex, like much of the world, loves social media. It’s the perfect place to promote your brand and your prestige venue.
- Email Marketing. It’s an old and reliable form of marketing that experts still reckon is top of the list for ROI. It’s especially useful for returning customers who’ve visited you before.
- Paid Advertising. All marketing agencies essex will provide Pay-Per-Click (PPC) marketing services across social media and search engines.
- Changes to Your Website. Converting traffic to purchases and bookings is the aim of our web design company essex.
We’re going to walk you through all of these different strategies – explaining why they afford wonderful results for your hospitality business – before providing a recap, a summary, and a guide on your next steps to beginning a new marketing campaign for your firm this year.
Every single digital marketing professional in essex has heard of the phrase: “Content is King.” But what exactly does this mean, in the context of marketing a hospitality firm?
You know what content is, of course. It’s anything you post online. It’s a tweet, a GIF, or a photo. It’s a feature-length film, or a two-minute explainer animation. It’s a blog post, a press release, or a slogan. Every time you produce content like this, you’re in with a chance of boosting your essex SEO (more on that later) and entertaining consumers across the web.
“Content marketing is more than a buzzword. It is the hottest trend in marketing because it is the biggest gap between what buyers want and brands produce.” – Michael Brenner
Videos are currently seen as the best content to create and share online: 81% of businesses currently use it as a marketing tool, because 78% of mobile users watch videos on their phones each week.
Blog content is also regarded as one of the best ways in which a digital marketing agency in essex can contribute to the growth of a hospitality brand. Companies the blog receive over 55% more web traffic. Plus, blogs share your stories, build your brand personality, and forge customer relationships – all at the same time.
“No matter what, the very first piece of social media real estate I’d start with is a blog.” – Chris Brogan
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Next up is our old friend SEO. If you’re familiar with SEO, you’ll know it’s the art of getting your website featured on the first page of Google’s search results. Google, by the way, are the unrivalled bosses of the web search industry: their search engine covers 95% of all searches on the internet. It’s barely worth thinking about Bing, Yahoo, or AskJeeves.
“Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first.” – Wendy Piersall
SEO was once a game of cat and mouse, with marketers tricking Google’s algorithm by shoving your website so full of keywords that it appeared to be highly relevant to web users typing in those terms. Google’s ranking algorithm has since matured, as have web designers in essex. Now, SEO is about finding your specific audience.
“The future of SEO is here: understanding and marketing to specific and defined audiences through search engines.” – Adam Audette
Incredibly, relatively few businesses actually operate with an SEO strategy. Data from 2020 suggests that around 64% of marketers invest in SEO – and that figure is likely to be far lower in the UK specifically. This represents a huge chance for essex-based brands to steal a march on their rivals. For hospitality businesses in particular, good essex SEO will:
- Match you up with consumers who are looking for your services and venues (words like “premium” and “luxury” word well here).
- Distinguish your hospitality firm from your competitors by ranking higher in Google’s SERPS.
- Drive higher relevant traffic to your website, ensuring that more essex residents connect with your brand.
- Enhance the visibility of your brand and your business – which can only be good for the future profitability of your firm.
SEO, when left to the professionals at ad agencies in essex, is a case of building up keywords used on your website, and inserting them into relevant articles and web copy. For firms like us – we’re also a web design company essex – there’s also back-end SEO boosting to take care of: things like hyperlink verification, backlink checking, and meta tagging of pages. You’ll likely not have the skills within your hospitality business to perform such SEO boosting changes alone.
Social Media Marketing
You’re well aware that social media is a gold mine. But to access that precious metal, you’re going to have to import the right tools, and the right experience, to extract a high ROI on your social media spend. Web design companies in essex with marketing experience can help you do this.
Around 70% of online businesses use social media to successfully market themselves in the UK, according to HubSpot. That means you’re already facing stiff competition in this space. But hospitality firms have a distinct advantage for marketing in essex:
“Successful companies in social media function more like entertainment companies, publishers, or party planners than as traditional advertisers.” – Erik Qualman
You’re used to entertaining, to planning parties, and to making people feel involved and welcome. That’s exactly what social media marketing in the 2020s calls for. Sharing pictures of your venue and your menu will help entice social media users – but getting users to share photos themselves is the holy grail you’re looking for.
Our digital marketing agency essex recommends your firm should be on the following social media platforms:
- Instagram. Some 90% of consumers follow at least one business on Instagram. Make your account beautiful, and you’ll get followed. Make your brand and your venue beautiful, and it’ll market itself through the posts of others.
- This is where you should concentrate the majority of your ad spend. You can target users on Facebook to granular detail, which is perfect for niche hospitality firms in essex.
- Twitter. Brilliant for customer service. Wicked for banter with competitors and partners. But not the place where you’ll be sharing many beautiful and enticing photos – or other marketing materials.
- LinkedIn. There are thousands of business travellers in essex at any one time. Being present on LinkedIn will help you get seen by this huge and wealthy market.
Global ad spend will top $605 billion in 2020 – and spend on social media will form about $100 billion of that figure. As such, it’s worth considering investing around one sixth of your ad spend on social media, to keep up with the global average.
Email marketing is famously the go-to method for customer retention, journey and relationship-building, and bulletin-sharing.
If you have a new deal, a discount, an offer, or a coupon on the go, you need to let your mailing list know. If you’re taking bookings again after a brief closure, your email audience should be the first to know. For digital marketing companies in essex, the mailing list is the base of operations: the place to see how your target audience reacts to your other marketing material.
“To keep a customer demands as much skill as to win one.” – Jeff Bezos
You can trust Bezos: he’s built an empire on the repeat custom of most of the Western world’s online consumers. And this means being personal, friendly, and even a little conversational with your email audience – to build trust, and manage their impression of your firm.
Personalised experiences are hugely popular with your target customers: over 90% of consumers say such experiences encourage them to trade with a firm online. So even addressing an email with the first name of its recipient can go a long way to securing their return trade.
“Courteous treatment will make a customer a walking advertisement.” – James Cash Penney
Practically, you’ll need CMS in your back-end, or an email marketing platform such as MailChimp or HubSpot, to help you manage emails – both automated ones, and those one-off messages to your existing customers. Our web design company essex can help you get started with these products, or integrate them in your existing website.
Marketing needn’t cost you an arm and a leg – but if you choose to pay for adverts, you are extremely likely to get a proven ROI of over 200% on what cash you put in. To run these campaigns effectively, though, you’ll want to partner with a web design company in essex.
“Don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with your marketing.” – Mike Volpe
This is actually your chance to get most creative with your advertising, as you’re able to commit tiny amounts of cash (sometimes as little as £1) to each ad campaign to test how it runs. Through a series of trial-and-error A/B testing, you might emerge with a winning advert with a huge conversion rate. Advert formats include:
- Banner adverts on various websites across the internet. These are cheap but ineffective – and aren’t often used by prestige brands.
- Social media adverts, which target users based on their activity.
- PPC (Pay Per Click) adverts, which you can set up on Google to boost your business when certain search terms are keyed in. You’ll only pay if your advert is clicked on, which helps increase your ROI.
- Programmatic paid marketing. Your ad content enters an auction each time a user types in a search term. If you bid highest in this auction, your advert is shown. If not, you lose no money, and your advert isn’t shown.
As with the other forms of marketing listed above, we strongly recommend that you partner with a essex marketing agency like ours to help you run these adverts. We’ll save you time, and advise you based on our many years of experience working with online advertisements and hospitality businesses.
Changes to Your Website
Finally, our web design company essex is particularly keen on showing you why changing your website can drive an incredible amount of additional profits to your firm. This is massively overlooked in essex – and it’s something we’re more than ready to handle for you.
Did you know that only 22% of businesses are happy with their conversion rates? Does that surprise you? Most conversion rates languish far below 50% – which means that less than half of the people who find and arrive at your website do anything other than look at a couple of pages and leave. To encourage them to trade with you, a web design company in essex will add UX (User Experience) features – like CTAs (Calls to Action).
“You can’t just place a few ‘Buy’ buttons on your website and expect your visitors to buy.” – Neil Patel
But, as marketing guru Neil Patel is often reminding us, a big “BUY” button isn’t enough to encourage more trade. You need to be subtler and smarter than that. Amongst the changes we’ll make to your website, if you let us loose on it, will be:
- A complete SEO overhaul to the code that Google’s algorithm sees. This will, of course, garner you more traffic.
- An SEO test, which will reveal your site’s top-used keywords. Not relevant? We’ll recommend changes that’ll get you more relevant visitors – more of whom you’ll convert into customers.
- A better sitemap, which will nudge visitors towards your booking, buying, or contact pages. It should only ever take a consumer three clicks to get to a place on your website where they part with their cash.
- Adding wonderful new customer service and marketing features like chatbots, which have been shown to dramatically increase user engagement.
- Integrating positive reviews from across the web on your site, as well as all of your social media channels and their rolling content. Over 90% of consumers have been influenced into trade by positive reviews. Sharing those reviews will boost trust while adding a sense that your firm is active and up-to-date.
“Instead of using technology to automate processes, think about using technology to enhance human interaction.” – Tony Zambito
Any technology our web designers essex use in your back-end will always be built with an eye on increasing human interaction – getting consumers to call, message, email, or book with you on your website as soon as they visit.
Digital Marketing in the 2020s
So, it’s time to take a breather and think back to what we’ve been discussing. The bottom line, we reckon, is that all hospitality businesses can enjoy huge boosts to their activity through using marketing techniques. Without marketing, your firm risks invisibility, obsolescence, and eventually – failure.
“Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of an intelligent effort.” – John Ruskin
But your marketing budget shouldn’t be sprayed out to any old digital agency in essex: you should remember that intelligence, forethought, and adequate planning are a hugely important part of successful marketing campaigns – and each strategy should be tailored to the objectives you’re trying to achieve. We love this guide to how you’ll set marketing objectives at your firm.
Working With Us
As one of essex’s most cutting-edge digital agencies, we’re keenly motivated to partner with the city’s flourishing and vibrant hospitality sector – helping firms get seen by tourists, business travellers, and expats alike.
We know that the difference between a booming hospitality firm and one that’s barely seeing a squeak of trade is incredibly simple: it’s all in the advertising.
“The man who stops advertising to save money is like the man who stops the clock to save time.” – Thomas Jefferson
And it looks like Thomas Jefferson, author of American democracy, agrees.
We’re always on the end of the phone to listen to your queries. Our expert essex web designers are here to explain which changes we’d recommend you make to your website. And our specialist essex marketing practitioners are here to co-devise the strategies that’ll get your business booming into the 2020s. The combination of our skills can help a business of any size – and any budget – make more of their digital presence.
And, if you’re still unsure and you’re looking for a little more advice and information, we’re more than happy to oblige, too: we’ve got dozens of case studies to run you by, all of which exhibit the incredible ROI we’ve seen hospitality firms enjoy after working with our web design company essex.