Including a blog on your website enables you to showcase your property’s personality, communicate helpful information, and boost your SEO to drive bookings. You can use a more informal tone and connect with the customer on a conversational level; think Dear Abby if she had check-in tips and beach advice.
But you have to post consistently to achieve results while balancing that on top of a busy schedule (yes, that conference group did have to check-in at the same time your hot water heater broke). It’s hard coming up with new and engaging content on a regular basis. There’s only so much you can say about lobby decorations, and the saga of the hot water heater, while interesting, may not be quite right. To help out, we’ve created this list of fundamental topics to get you started.
It’s kinda obvious, but writing about your property helps guests learn more about you and connect with your brand. These types of posts are a speed-dating introduction to your property. What do you want people to know in the few minutes they have to read your blog?
News >> What’s changing at your hotel? Do you have a new menu item or spa treatment available? Do you have a whole new spa? Use your blog to share your news!
Behind the scenes >> Those who say it’s better not to know how the sausage gets made are wrong. Take guests behind the scenes at your hotel and show them how you put the stay experience together. There’s a story here, especially if you experienced a few little bumps along the way. You can use that story to humanize your hotel. Don’t just show them how the sausage gets made; show them the people making it. This leads to…
Staff >> Highlight the stars of the show—your staff—on your blog via interviews or invite them to write something about themselves. Ask them to share what they love about the property, their job, and the local area. Then ask them something that will help people get to know them. What’s their favorite TV show? Do they have any pets? (Any opportunity to bring cute animals into the conversation is a good thing). Staff aren’t simply staff. They’re people, and that’s what makes them interesting.
FAQs >> Take the questions your guests usually bring to the front desk and incorporate them into your blog. What family-friendly attractions are nearby? Where can I get a great coffee? What’s the best way to get around town? FAQs can inspire interesting and helpful blog posts like “Top 5 Restaurants Locals Love in [Your Town]” that rank well in search engines.
Amenities >> What amenities do you have that guests love to use? Your blog is a helpful place to expand on services like your spa and fitness classes. Take it beyond a simple description by adding workout tips and other how-tos (hands up, who wants to learn how to make a homemade facial?). It’s a good time to highlight wellness with 39 percent of American travelers prioritizing self care while on vacation.
Social Responsibility >> What are you doing to benefit the world around you? Guests want to know. Tell them about any environmental initiatives or charitable programs you participate in. As of 2022, the earth is heating up, and 81 percent of vacationers around the globe feel that traveling sustainably is key.
Unless they are very, very burnt out, guests don’t plan to nap in their room for their entire vacation. The area around you and the activities in it are as important as the property itself. Writing about your location is an excellent way to establish your local expertise and boost your SEO.
Restaurants >> Everyone loves good food. In fact, three-quarters of American travelers over the past five years have chosen their destination for it. Food is not only highly Instagramable, it lends itself to luscious description. Think of all those adjectives; sweet, spicy, succulent…
If any restaurants in your area are especially good at catering to dietary restrictions, mention that as well—or write a dedicated blog post about it (“Best Allergy-friendly Restaurants in [Your Town]”). It’s harder to travel if you don’t have anything to eat when you get there. Let guests know they don’t have to cram a bag of oatmeal into their carry-on.
Don’t forget to mention any partnerships or dining deals guests can enjoy while staying with you, like that 20% discount at the local sushi bar.
Activities >> Travelers want to know what there is to do. Think in terms of lesser-known hotspots, not just the main tourist attractions. Tourists want to get away from other tourists. They’re happy to explore off the beaten path and experience life as a local.
Promote other local businesses, like tour and activity operators, art galleries, theaters, etc., and they may do the same for you.
Nature Spots >> Do you have any hiking, biking, or swimming spots nearby? Steer your guests to the best places and show off your expertise. You’re the one who knows which beaches are way too crowded and which are lovely for walking but have too strong a current for swimming. If you have a bike or kayak rental program, blog about it!
Culture & History >> Do you have anything of cultural or historical significance nearby? Let guests know the story behind it. Throw in some fun facts. If you’re in a major city like London, you’re spoiled for choice. Plenty of important people ruled/wrote/got beheaded there. But a story doesn’t have to be well-known to be interesting. A story no one’s heard of enhances your unique selling proposition, so do a little digging and see what you find. If you’re lucky, you may even have a haunted building in town (even if the ghost isn’t Anne Boleyn).
If your hotel itself has a fascinating story (maybe it used to be a speakeasy during the Prohibition or film set for an old Hollywood movie), share that too.
Travel Tips >> What should guests know about your location to make their stay experience smoother? Will it be hotter or colder than travelers might expect? Do certain attractions/activities need to be pre-booked? Is there a back route to avoid rush-hour traffic? Brainstorm how to navigate your town from an outsider’s perspective. Think about what you tell your in-laws when they visit.
Events & Promotions
Do you have a special event or promotion coming up? Your blog is where to go into detail on that upcoming Easter brunch or Black Friday bonanza. (Marketing and holidays go together like wine and chocolate.) Let people know if you have any special deals on the horizon. However, don’t overdo it; too much promotional content annoys readers.
Blog about events and special happenings in your local area too. What festivals, parades, and other celebrations does your town have going on? These don’t have to be huge. Is there an open mic night at your local cafe? A new exhibit at your museum? You could create a blog post about upcoming art shows, or one about where to catch local bands on a Friday night.
Review and Update Old Posts
Review which posts are popular and add more like them. This is where your website analysis and metrics come in.
You don’t have to start from scratch every time. Revise and revamp older posts to add new information…Things around your neighborhood change, and it’s important to keep abreast when they do. Guests won’t be pleased if that little cafe with the perfect mocha you told them about has actually been out of business for a year. Add a little note saying when a post was last updated so viewers know the information is current.
Invite Local Businesses to Contribute Content
Guest posts introduce a fresh perspective to your blog and can attract people who ordinarily wouldn’t look at your content. Ask businesses you partner with if they’d like to take over for a post. They’ll share it on their online marketing / social media channels, further increasing your reach, and maybe even invite you to write a post on their blog (which you can then promote).
Blogging is an effective way to promote your property and destination. But like anything worthwhile, it takes time and effort. The hardest part can be coming up with topics to write about. Use the above ideas to inspire you, and if you’re still stumped, take a peek at what your competitors and other local businesses are doing. Just remember, your blog is for showcasing your property’s unique personality and helping potential guests connect with your brand to ultimately bring in more bookings.