Friday, October 25, 2013

Hotel digital marketing: Agency vs In house

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It is obvious that in the last 10 years the tourism industry has been transformed in the most dynamic way by the internet and technology. Nowadays travelers are using many online tools (social media, search engines etc), many websites (metasearch engines, OTAs etc) and multiple devices (Desktop, Tablet, Mobile, TV) until finally coming to a decision about the hotel they will stay.

There are many tools and strategies for each stage of the traveler experience, which should be used in harmony in order to be effective. We can no longer talk about SEO if we do not have an organized presence in Social Media. We cannot talk about Social Media if there is no email marketing and so on. Therefore it is reasonable for some hoteliers to be confused about the choice of whether to outsource the digital marketing of their hotel or do it In-house.

These tools and tactics require many internet professionals with specialized knowledge, constant research and education. So, an agency, which offers a complete solution for a hotel should be able to offer potential web designers, web developers, SEO experts, copywriters, Social Media marketers, Adwords experts, email marketers, Analytics experts etc.

For an agency - thanks to economies of scale - a hotel, or group can benefit from many professional services from a single source. An agency can offer tailored services to meet a client's needs quickly and efficiently. The hotel can benefit from this expertise and coordination of a team of internet professionals for the same cost as recruiting an individual to provide the service in house. 

The quality is obviously much better and the cost will be less in the case of cooperation with a properly staffed digital agency.

So the dilemma for hoteliers is not the choice between an Agency or In-house, but whether they will invest in a strategic plan for their hotel on the internet to earn more and direct bookings or make isolated and ineffective attempts without a complete digital strategy.

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