Every main street in every town across the country is lined with hotels, restaurants, fitness gyms, bars, and coffee shops, and with an abundant amount of competition, hospitality businesses often wonder – “What brings in more customers? That’s easy… It’s solid hospitality branding.
Strong Branding for Your Hospitality Business is Worth the Investment
Many new hospitality establishment owners balk at spending the time and capital investment to build a unique brand before beginning to market their services but those who lack clever and creative branding just blend in with the competition. A brand gives your customers something to emotionally connect to.
What is a Brand… Simply?
A brand uses your hospitality company’s mission, vision, values, and promise to your customers with the personality and identity messaging to connect with current and potential patrons. It also includes visual aspects like your logo along with any tagline. While it may sound simple, developing a strong brand requires deep commercial knowledge, a high level of creativity, and deep analytical research of your target market.
Why Develop Branding for a Hospitality Business?
Customers look to members of the hospitality industry to escape any mundane jobs and routine-oriented lives for something exciting – and embark on a truly memorable experience. Hotel clerks may personally welcome people at the door, the restaurant staff could surprise them with a special birthday song, and an airline attendant makes a child feel like a copilot with a one-of-a-kind pin.
Customers will remember those moments for years to come – and the establishment becomes known for its… Well, hospitality. That’s a strong brand. Without one, those potential picture-worthy patron experiences become just another predictable moment in their day.
Additionally, the development of branding for your hospitality business offers a strong sense of credibility and trust among both your customers and the local industry. It differentiates your establishment from rivals and grows loyalty among clients to boost recurring income and patronage.
5 Expert Tips for Branding in the Hospitality Industry
What can YOU do to start bringing in more customers? It all begins with a well-researched idea of who your target audience is, their preferences, and other key criteria that allows you to market to, and connect with them – on a level that brings them through the door. Integrate these 5 key tips into your hospitality branding efforts.
Make the Customer Experience the Key Priority
The customer is king in the hospitality industry and accurately predicting (and focusing on) their needs, wants and preferences promotes exceptional service. Personalize their experience and keep an eye on changing customer trends to improve loyalty and give them that “wow” factor they yearn for.
Root Your Brand in Consumer Insights
Customers often rely on insights from previous patrons when deciding whether or not to frequent your hospitality establishment. This has been proven by the uptick in online review platforms like Google, Yelp, and Foursquare. Use this valuable feedback and insert it into your branding.
For example, if customer insights continually compliment the basketball-centered atmosphere of your bar, brand your tavern as a sports bar instead of a restaurant with spirits.
Build Your Brand Story with Honesty and Transparency
Humans can detect dishonesty when a business is hiding something. The combination of honesty and transparency builds trust among your customers and in turn, entices them to share their positive recommendations. If you’ve made past mistakes, own them, rebuild that credibility, and then communicate it through your branding message.
Choose a Visual Identity and Central Idea for your Brand
A buyer who is confused about your conflicting brand visuals, promise, and messaging tends to steer clear. Choose a visual identity and idea that your brand centralizes on – and remain consistent. If your restaurant serves American fare, Mexican cruising, and Italian food… buyers may not understand your establishment’s main objectives.
Connect the Hotel with Its Location
Tourism travelers aren’t booking your hotel solely because of its complimentary breakfast, but their first priority is that the hotel location is in close proximity to their destination. Create a brand that supports the local tourist area to immerse patrons in their vacation.
One great example is the accommodations close to Disney properties. They have embraced Orlando tourism which often includes “The House of Mouse” and brand themselves just as Disney does – full-service fun for the family.
Hospitality Business Branding Impact in 2022
Establishments and companies in the service sector need award-winning designs and a highly-capable and creative team to develop branding for hospitality that demonstrates proven results. The competition is too steep in many locations to fail at branding in the hospitality industry.
Branding in hospitality industry not only builds that coveted customer loyalty factor and differentiates you from the competition, but can also open additional revenue streams previously overlooked. Some well-frequented restaurants have begun to sell branded apparel, and mugs, and even implemented loyalty programs to encourage repeat business.
Much more than a logo, your hospitality branding makes patron selection easy when they understand and connect with everything you prioritize. Success begins with hospitality business branding.