Remember when you used to enjoy getting email? Before the advent of email marketing, it was practically a guarantee that if you got an email, it was from someone you knew and wanted to hear from. But by the late 90s, email use had skyrocketed, and there was suddenly a new way for marketers to reach potential customers.

The result? You started getting emails from EVERYONE. It was no longer an enjoyable experience. The advent of SPAM filters and software helped, but the damage was done. We’ll forever view our inbox wi
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th a dose of suspicion every morning.

This is the challenge hotel marketers face today. Email is a highly effective marketing tool for businesses of many kinds, and being tagged as an email spammer is a huge headache.

It’s getting more difficult to get into inboxes, as the battle between spammers and SPAM filters rages on. Almost one in four commercial emails doesn’t even make it to the inbox to begin with, ending up in spam folders or blocked altogether, according to a report by Return Path, a New York email deliverability monitoring firm.

But, the news isn’t all bad for hotel marketers. You can significantly improve your odds of reaching customers and prospects by taking the right steps.

Use real customer lists
Many marketers have fallen into the trap of using purchased lists, which typically include SPAM traps and email addresses of people who haven’t opted in to receive messages. Avoid buying lists. These people aren’t connected with your hotel in any way, and are more likely to mark you as SPAM than they are to book with you. Once you get relegated to the SPAM folder, it can be really hard to get out.

Instead, use ONLY emails of guests or prospective guests who have opted in to communications. Have them specify the types of email they want to receive. For example, if they agree to a newsletter but not marketing messages, honor the request, or risk dinging your email marketing reputation. You should also consider segmenting your list by various personal details to make it easier to send relevant messages.

Hone your content
Spammy content triggers SPAM filters only 17% of the time, according to the same Return Path report. But if your hotel is new to email marketing, or too small to have built a reputation, that rate could be higher.

Moreover, annoying and irrelevant marketing messages can lead some guests to click the “report spam” button. Avoid trouble by targeting messages, clearly identifying yourself in the “from” address, and crafting an engaging subject line.

Think about the value prop
Is this specific message going to be valued by this specific guest? You need to think twice about the relevancy of every message you send. If your message isn’t relevant to the guest, it’s more likely to get marked as SPAM.

John Bonini and the team at IMPACT, a marketing and branding strategy company, have put together a flow-chart infographic that can help you evaluate your marketing emails and decide whether your message is worth sending.

Use the right tools
When you’re a small hotel that doesn’t send much email (say, more than 30,000 messages a month), it can be hard to build a reputation with internet service providers and get past SPAM filters. Using marketing tools can boost your sender score, help you manage your lists and otherwise stay on the straight and narrow.

Take back business from the OTAs with targeted marketing
We’re hosting a free webinar next week for hoteliers–CLICK HERE to register and find out how you can take back business from the OTAs with a solid targeted marketing strategy.

The post Are You Spamming Your Guests? appeared first on Revinate.

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A marine gave his grandma a better gift then she could ever have imagined with hilarious results.

Torri Tyrell Brown, a 20-year-old lad from Jackson, Mississippi, has been stationed at Camp Kinser on Okinawa Island, just south of Japan, for the past year and seven months.

The last time he saw his family was December 2016 so he decided to return home and surprise them last month.

With his nan fainting from shock the moment she saw Torri in kitchen, it’s clear his surprise was more effective than
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You can watch the video here:

In the footage Torri can be seen patiently waiting in the kitchen as his family led his nan, Willie Bell Burkes, 62, into the room saying to her ‘look who just walked into your house’.

The moment Willie spots Torri, she collapses to the floor fainting from shock. Thankfully her family helped soften the fall and made sure she was okay getting up soon after.

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He explained:

I decided to surprise my grandma right before our family reunion so I told her I wasn’t going to make it back home for the family reunion once again.

After that phone call, I went to the airport to fly out to the States. I called my cousin (one of the two people I told) to come pick me up.

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She’s a caring and kind woman who raised me every since I was a young infant. She has been there for me my entire life and I consider her my best friend.

How sweet! She clearly loved having you back home Torri!

Earlier this year in June a similar video went viral of a dad’s incredible reaction to his son returning home from the military.

27-year-old Taylor McCauley had been away for seven years but decided to surprise his dad on Father’s Day who flipped over a table in excitement and rushed over to give his son the biggest hug.

You can watch the emotional moment here:

Speaking exclusively to UNILAD, Taylor explained he had no idea how his dad would react.

He said:

I wasn’t sure how it was going to go. I drove 17 hours to get back home so my head was all over the place.

I was in contact with my parents before I got to the house and made it seem like I was still in North Carolina because I really wanted them to be surprised, but also to keep tabs on them so the plan would go well.

It was Father’s Day so I knew it would be intense and on the way back I got a pretty heartfelt message from my dad.

When I read it, I thought ‘oh man’, that’s why in the video he called me a son of a bitch.

Yeah, to be fair, you probably had that coming, Taylor!

If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via stories@unilad.co.uk. To license this article contact licensing@unilad.co.uk

Read more: unilad.co.uk
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