Compared to other channels, email marketing is one of the most effective ways of digital marketing. If you set it up well, you can target different groups of users, have different strategies, and get that desired booking faster and better.
Is email marketing really as effective as it is being told? In today's digital marketing world, email has a place and a role that it holds tight.
Google is the king who sits on the throne, and it seems that it will not be removed from that position for some time. And one important thing, Google is your friend as long as you are ready to pay for it. Facebook and other social media are more than cool, but it has become too demanding to keep up with all these changes, to be constantly present and constantly entertain the audience when you have a "serious" job to do. After all, you are aware that you need additional training to upgrade your knowledge, and that takes some time. This is where email marketing comes off as a lifesaving solution.
And indeed, it is easy to use, fast and quite inexpensive. In addition to email marketing, if you set it up well, you can target different groups of users, have different strategies, and get that desired booking faster and better.
When it comes to email marketing and charter services, the main question is how and to whom you want to sell your services.
If the message is aimed at direct guest (B2C) then your message must have a certain emotional tone and call for action. You need to build a trustworthy relationship with your guest and allow him to easily evaluate the value of your service.
If we talk about messages focused at agencies (B2B) that you want to inform about your offers, news, and important business changes, then you're sure to base your business relationship, logical approach, and simply informative message tone.
So you have understood, there is a significant difference in approach. In addition to incorporating email campaigns into the content strategy of your charter company, it is of utmost importance to segment your email lists and adopt communication to each type of audience.
Specials & Discounts should not be the only reason why you send an email to your customer base.
If the only thing you have to tell your guests is that you have "great deals" for them, then you start branding yourself as a charter that always has a discount and is actually on sale all season. Plus, it turns out that the discount is the only reason why your guest will return to the next year. This may function in the short run, but in the long run, this approach will not ultimately reflect well on your income.
Of course, you are updating your discounts during the season and adjusting the prices of charter services to the market, so the question is how will you inform your potential clients if not by email? But have you considered how often you do it and is it really necessary to promote the last minute discount every Saturday during the season?
It is already established in the industry at what time interval the last minute discount applies, and there are other channels by which you can communicate this message.
What you want to avoid is being bored to your friend what can eventually result in them stop reading your emails. In that case, your e-mail is pointless. In order to avoid all listed above and remain interesting and worth of reading to your receivers, there are few e-mail campaigns which every charter company should implement towards their guests:
Usually, after booking made according to your website, you direct the guest to the "Thank you page" where you are actually confirming the reservation. However, you can also send an email thanking the guest for choosing your charter company, confirming their booking information, and at the same time collecting valuable information about the guest and their preferences, which can later be used to send targeted offers. This kind of email can be automated and sent to the guest immediately after confirming the reservation while they are still thinking about it. Why is it important to send emails like this? Because this is the first step in building a personal relationship between you and your guest, it helps to reduce the risk of a reservation being cancelled and you let the guest know that you appreciate and respect him or her even before stepping foot on your reception desk.
With this campaign, you provide guests with all the information relevant to their arrival and stay on the boat. Possible details include extras that guests can use on your charter, weather forecast, transfer information, local guide, route suggestions. You may have a .pdf brochure document that will be a handy little guide to help you get there better. You send such a message to the guest a few days before his / her arrival, thus leaving a friendly impression that you are professional and helpful. You also avoid guests being suspicious and coming to your reception with a dose of fear of the unknown.
With this campaign, you thank the guests for their stay on your boat. This is also a good time to seek feedback; for example, you could ask them to complete a survey or to rate you on important sites like Google or TripAdvisor. Here, you can use targeted messages in your email marketing to encourage guests to sign up for future deals based on their preferences and to seek feedback on a particular service. You can also ask a guest to leave a comment on Facebook - just don't ask too much in one message. Decide what matters the most and what will benefit you. A message like this you should send the day after the checkout and is a great way to get feedback from a guest while he/she is still under the impression of staying.
This email campaign should only be sent to a specific group of users. Whether you choose to send such a campaign only to those who have subscribed to your newsletter or only to those who are your regular guests based on some of your criteria (e.g. a guest who has been on your boat once or more times), it must be personalized. The content of the message must be related to the previous guest experience on your boat, based on the information you have gathered from your previous campaigns. You may want to send a short-term quote with reduced prices to encourage direct bookings, or you may have some new service that is ideal for an accurately targeted group. Campaigns like this are sent continuously - not too often so you don't end up as spam, and yet often enough to stay in the memory. Likewise, with these campaigns, you gain customer loyalty and encourage them to come back to you again.
Depending on your CRM system and email marketing tools, there are numerous options you can try for your charter. No matter which email marketing strategy you choose, you can always use these four campaigns as solid support.
If you are considering how to set up your email campaigns and get started with CRM, let us know, we at the Zona Plus will help you.
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