Many properties try a ‘scatter gun’ approach to be seen, however throwing your marketing budget up against the wall and hoping it will stick is not going to develop business for you; sometimes you need to look closer to home.
Remember that venue hunters may look at anything from 20 to 30 venues online, so you need to attract them before they even contact you.
- Websites need to be clear, showing what you offer for events, including examples of key events you have hosted. Ensure too that the quality of the images you use are the best possible. Many properties do not invest in a good photographer, but just scavenge images from multiple photographers who have worked at their property. This does not work and will not give the buyer a consistent feel. You will probably not make the short-list.
- Video is so important these days as well and can add a lot to how your venue comes across. Use a professional production company that understands the impression you want to get across to your audience. Simple phone videos can enhance social media to demonstrate the quality of the service you offer and the team you have.
Once hunters narrow down their search you may be one of 5 – 10 properties they will speak to or more likely email these days – this is ‘Key First Impression Time’.
- Speed, accuracy and quality of information you send back have an impact. But I would suggest that you give clients a call and discuss what they require, then email! What are your competitors doing? Benchmark against them and then you need to stand out and be different.
As a venue the first thing is to understand what you have to offer; know your product, be brutally honest about what you are good at or the potential of what you can offer. Sometimes it is useful to bring an outside person in with a fresh pair of eyes.
- Get clients to visit – your conference representative needs so much more than simply making a delegate feel welcome – he/she needs to be someone who is always on hand and who knows all the details of the venue’s facilities and the organiser’s needs. Attention to details is critical here.
These are just 4 areas that will make you stand out from the competition and have you high on the list of a venue finder.
Roger Masterson is the founder of Celtic Castles, the award winning online castle-booking company, based in the heart of Yorkshire in England. He is best known as “The Castle Man”. Nobody in the world knows more about staying in castles than Roger. He is a serial entrepreneur; he helps business owners to think differently. He is at his best as a disruptive thinker and believes you learn more from things going wrong; he understands the difficulties of losing a business. To get in touch with Roger, go to @The_Castle_Man