When done correctly, email marketing is among the most lucrative and high-ROI marketing strategies available. However, many hotels greatly reduce their chances of having a successful email campaign by making several key errors, six of which are discussed below, along with what hotels can do instead to improve their email marketing approach.

Omitting a direct call to action.

This mistake may seem self-evident, but each email you write should have a call to action that clearly asks customers to do a task like book a summer package or sign up for your loyalty program. Without a call to action, people will tend to read your emails and then forget about them.

Sending emails to everyone on your list

Instead, emails should be segmented to each group you serve by using special perks and offers they’re most likely to find attractive like special reduced room rates for senior citizens or for people serving in the military.

Not designing for mobile devices

In a truly responsive email, the font size, column layouts, and buttons are all designed to fit both a smartphone and a desktop, offering the best experience to users no matter what device they’re using. Research shows that about 54% of all emails are first opened on a mobile device, so it makes good business sense to format your emails for smartphones as well as for computers.

Not taking the time to write an effective subject line.

Your subject lines should be short and precise, and provide a compelling reason to open your emails. Adding a sense of urgency to a subject line can lead to a much higher open rate. For example, “Save 25% off room rates until April 30th” is instantly more appealing because it has a specific end date.

Using an email list that is not clean or permissible.

Instead, make sure your email list only contains people who have willingly opted to be contacted by you. It makes sense to save time by emailing only those users most likely to be receptive to your marketing in the first place, such as past and potential guests, and those who have subscribed to your list or signed up for one of your promotions.

Not using metrics and A/B testing to improve campaigns.

It’s important to use metrics like delivery rates, open rates, and click-through rates to assess the strength of your email list. Also, you should conduct periodic A/B testing by sending one version of your campaign to one group of your subscribers like baby boomers and a different version to another group like millennials. In this way you can figure out which variations of your campaign get the best results from various segments of users.

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