In a digital world, travelers can research and book their own hotel stays. Instead of travel agents, people opt for the convenience of online travel agencies (OTAs), such as and Expedia. While this is convenient for travelers, OTA fees can range from 15%-30% which can be a burden, especially for independent hotels.

Instead of relying on distribution channels with high commission fees, we always recommend that brands also focus on driving direct bookings via digital advertising direct from a brand’s website. Digital ads help establish a bold online presence for hotels and attract potential guests. But digital advertising strategies for hotels are not one-size-fits-all. In order to be effective, hoteliers need to optimize their digital ad strategy to reach their target audience.  

OTA commission rates are a financial burden for hotels and the rates can range from 15% to 30%.Digital Ad Tactics for Hotel Digital Marketing

Already running ads? Optimize your campaigns to maximize your ad spend budget and reach more potential guests with these strategies.

Focus on Targeted Keywords

One of the best strategies for optimizing digital ads is selecting the right keywords for your target audience. When potential guests search for hotels, they use specific keywords related to their preferences. Using keywords pertinent to your hotel and its amenities will help your ads appear in relevant searches and increase the visibility of your hotel to travelers.

Keyword research can be conducted using tools such as SEMrush or Google Adwords Keyword Planner. These tools provide insight into the exact keywords and phrases potential guests use to search for hotels. Another benefit of using these tools is the ability to identify keywords used by your competitors. 

Refresh Ad Copy

Improve the effectiveness of your ads with compelling copy that leverages keywords and emphasizes the special benefits of your hotel and its amenities such as a sparkling pool or luxurious spa.

Beyond highlighting your hotel’s features and amenities, your ad copy should also speak to the needs and preferences of your target audience. If you’re targeting families, emphasize your family-friendly amenities like special activities for kids, a children’s play area, or a complimentary breakfast buffet. If you’re targeting business travelers, highlight your meeting rooms and business center.

Invest in High-Quality Creatives

Visuals are a powerful tool in digital advertising. Use high-quality images and videos to feature your hotel and its amenities. Attractive ad imagery can gain the attention of potential guests and provide an idea of what to expect when they book a reservation.

When choosing images and videos for your ads, showcase your hotel in the best possible light. Use a diversity of interior and exterior shots, as well as photos or videos of your amenities like the pool, spa, or restaurant. Graphics should include eye-catching designs with regard to color, shape, and space.

Digital ad strategies are not one-size-fits-all and hoteliers must optimize their strategies to reach their target audiences.Utilize Retargeting

A retargeting ad campaign allows you to reach people who have already visited your website or interacted with previous ads. This can be an effective way to remind potential guests of your hotel and encourage them to book a reservation on your website.

To create retargeting ads, you can use tools like Google AdWords or Facebook Ads Manager. These platforms enable you to create custom audiences based on people who have visited your website or otherwise engaged with your hotel’s online presence. You can then show targeted ads to these audiences and remind them to visit your website and book a stay.

Monitor Performance

Regularly monitor the performance of your ad campaigns and make data-driven changes, as needed. Tools like Google Analytics 4 (GA4) or Facebook Ads Manager can help you monitor your ad performance. Using analytics to track your digital ad performance metrics can help you make targeted improvements to everything from click-through rates to overall bookings and optimize cost per booking. 

If you notice that your CTR or conversion rate is low, you may need to adjust your keywords, ad copy, images, or targeting strategy.

Increase Direct Bookings with an Advanced Digital Ad Strategy

Stand out from your competitors and save on OTA fees with a comprehensive digital ad strategy. Mad Fish Digital builds high-performance digital ad strategies for hotels and management groups that are focused on increasing direct bookings.

Contact us today to learn more!