This week’s post is a guest post from David Mitchell. David is the founder of webmarketing4hoteliers.com – a website dedicated to B&B owners and Inn Keepers serious about ‘getting more beds filled’ and ‘making more money’ through effective marketing on the internet. For those seeking ‘how to’ information on QR codes, you may want to look at our article on getting started with QR codes.
B&B marketing can be quite a challenge as the competition is always tight no matter what star rating a B&B has or in what country it’s located. Marketing your B&B is no longer just about letters, email flyers and an effective website. A very high number of B&B searches and bookings are completed on Smartphones and Tablet PCs – these are the new ways of the world.
The ‘age’ of the simple “mobile phone” that cannot connect to the internet is nearly over. Smartphone shipments exceeded those of “basic mobile phones” for the first time in the most recent three months and accounted for 52% of the 42m units sold. Professionals, businessmen, students and working Mum’s all have these high tech communication devices. Not like the old Jurassic cellular phones or worse, the pagers, a Smartphone can literally do everything your desktop PC can. You can e-mail, chat, make a phone call, surf on the Web, listen to your kind of music, watch videos, create documents and spreadsheets etc.. and all these features in a machine that’s just about the size of your hand.
The latest mobile marketing trend is the QR code. Abbreviated from Quick Response code, it is similar to a barcode where an information or a text is encoded in it. QR codes can be read when scanned by a Smartphone or a QR barcode reader. This kind of code has made website tracking more convenient where one can be directed to a website by just scanning it on their phones. Here are five ways how B&B’s can use QR codes.
1. Create guest referral cards with QR codes on. Have your customers give out referral cards with a QR code on which leads to a special friends and family rate page.
2. QR codes are the new business cards. Aside from websites, you can place contact details on QR codes too. You don’t have to hand out small pieces of cards to everybody because all you need is your mobile phone. All it takes is to scan the B&B’s code. Other than fast and easy, it saves a whole lot of paper. And no one can make an excuse that they lost your business card or else, they have lost their phones.
3. QR codes rather than commercial slogans. Instead of creating the traditional and sometimes old, catchy phrases, place your B&B’s QR codes on shirts, public places, posters etc. It’s a new way of enticing people. For all they know, they’re on your website already.
4. QR codes make Smartphone usage easier. Instead of typing the contact details and URL on the mobile phone’s keypad, scanning it helps make things easier and faster. No misspelling, no wrong URLs and no frills.
5. Mobile marketing has never been this fun. Using the latest marketing trends for your B&B creates a great impression for your potential customers. It means you’re not only keeping up with technology, but making a statement that you’re keeping ahead in the B&B industry as well.
Webmarketing4hoteliers is a private, members-only, resource for B&B owners who are serious about ‘getting more beds filled’ and ‘making more money’ through effective marketing on the internet. The latest strategies and tactics are catered for – as well as ‘hand-holding’ for complete newcomers. Contact David by email.