Conde Nast Traveler recently came out with results from a poll asking travelers, what are the best hotels for business travel? The results featured hotels in 15 of the most popular business travel cities around the world. Included on the list is the Four Seasons Seattle, the InterContinental San Francisco, The Ritz-Carlton Chicago, Peninsula Beverly Hills and Fairmont Dallas.
But, can you tell how great these business hotels really are based on how they’re presented online? We were curious to see how these hotels are telling their story to attract business travelers as they research and compare hotels for their business trips.
We did an audit and found three similarities in the online marketing and visual storytelling strategies that many hotels on Conde Nast Traveler’s list share. Keep in mind while reading that you don’t have to be a luxury hotel to carry out these strategies. Every hotel of every size and location has a story to tell and can adapt these strategies to target the business travel market.
They’re Social Media Butterflies
These hotels tell their individual stories by sharing imagery that highlights their amenities catering to business travelers, local attractions and events. They keep on top of social media by making great use of free tools such as Facebook’s visual features and using other new photo sharing social tools such as Instagram, PhotoGrid and Cinemagram.
When checking out their social sites, you will see that their efforts generate excellent engagement from their fans in the form of likes and comments.
You can follow suit too by downloading the social photo sharing tools mentioned above and let the everyday happenings at your hotel inspire the content you put out.
The Peninsula Beverly Hills has earned over 3,000 fans by posting content and photos that business travelers are interested in. For example, we see the hotel promoting the complimentary use of a Cadillac for guests staying in their suites.
They’re Mobile Fanatics
These properties understand that having a mobile optimized website is essential because business travelers are quick to adopt new travel technology and are accessing hotel information on their mobile devices. The mobile websites are well designed and give travel shoppers the information they’re looking for upfront, like:
- Rooms and amenities
- Photo gallery
- Reservations & promotions
- Local attractions
- Contact information
These are excellent ways to create engagement, show off the hotel’s visuals and entice them to book at the point of interest. The website layouts are easy to navigate, visually appealing and again co
Remember, that business travelers are looking for that “je ne sais quoi” that makes you stand out. Show them how your hotel will add value to their stay by showing them (through visuals) what local attractions they can explore and how you will go above and beyond to make their stay more pleasant. Make sure that the visuals can be easily displayed and navigated on the smaller screens of a mobile phone or tablet.mmunicating the hotel’s theme through the design.
The InterContinental San Francisco has an easy to use homepage with a click-to-call function, big menu buttons and a “Book Now” widget for the travel shopper’s convenience.
They’re Visual Storytelling Superstars
These hotels know the value of visual storytelling. They communicate their story to business travelers on their websites and across the web with attractive imagery of their chef’s latest creations, their fitness centre’s state-of-the art equipment, or local attractions that they may wish to explore if they find a few moments downtime.
You might ask yourself, why should hotels that target business travelers be concerned with this? Do they really care? The answer is yes.
Business travelers are a lot like leisure travelers and they appreciate the hotel’s individual atmosphere. In fact, a survey respondent praised the Four Seasons Seattle for going “out of their way to help, including find scores of a game they don’t show in the hotel”. Although this might seem like a small act of kindness, its gestures like these that define the hotel’s culture and create loyalty.
Make sure that your visual story is also consistent across managed travel websites and apps like Concur, Carlson Wagonlit, Egencia, Travelocity Business and so on because a percentage of business travelers are bound to corporate travel booking policies. You want to apply the same ideas as you would on your own website and third party websites – show off the business travel amenities and the experience your hotel provides.
Here, we see how The Ritz-Carlton Chicago displays their unique business amenities in a visual appealing way on their website. Since travel shoppers are looking for more than business amenities they also show the hotel’s personality with stories about Chicago.
If you want to make the list of top business hotels, make sure you have these characteristics as part of your online strategy. They’re easily accessible and easier to execute than you think. To learn more about how to tell your story to business travelers, download our Corporate Travel Storytelling Guide: Getting the Business Traveler to Choose You.
You can check out the full list of hotels that were featured as the top performers here: The Best Business Hotels in 15 Cities.