The world of luxury travel marketing is changing, with today’s consumers more likely to find and book exclusive getaways online. Emilia Jedamska is a luxury hospitality consultant at Relevance, a full-service digital marketing agency that helps luxury brands reach ultra-high-net-worth-individuals (UHNWIs). Emilia also owns two boutique villa rental companies, St Tropez House and Cap Villas, both targeting UHNWIs. With over a decade of experience working in the luxury industry along the French Riviera, Emilia is a veritable expert in attracting the attention of the world’s richest.
Here, she answers some of the most frequently asked questions on how she reaches and engages with UHNWIs seeking exclusive getaways.
What are the best marketing strategies for luxury hospitality?
There is no one best marketing strategy for luxury hospitality, and certainly, none that will work overnight. All digital marketing strategies require diligence and hard work before they reap any rewards. There are no miracles and no quick fixes. In the world of luxury hospitality digital marketing, determination and a clear strategy are essential elements to success.
One of the most effective digital marketing strategies is SEO. Yes, the popularity of alternative routes to browse the net is growing, and yes, social media has taken over classic search, but at the end of the day, almost all my clients at St Tropez House and Cap Villas find me through organic search engines, most notably Google.
Once you are out there and your hard efforts start rewarding you with qualified traffic, ensure that your imagery is consistent and on-brand. This is a cardinal rule that applies to every brand. Your brand must be consistent yet outstanding all at the same time. For example, a luxury hospitality business using the same generic photos of properties and the same stock photography of a palm tree on the beach will go nowhere and fail to drive this highly exclusive cohort to action.
Companies that try to own the location they are shooting, find a unique angle to showcase their offerings, and make a conscious effort to show an authentic lifestyle, not just a staged lifestyle, will attract the most valued of clients.
Which digital marketing strategies helped you to grow your businesses?
At St Tropez House and Cap Villas, we have relied on a robust and consistent SEO strategy, adding blocks one by one for the last 10 years. We try to cover all the bases with PPC, social media, and newsletters, but we pick our leading channels very carefully.
Have you seen any new luxury hospitality marketing trends in the last year?
Apps are one of the most innovative marketing strategies currently trending. Once you have a mobile app for a preferred agency, hotel or platform, it is more comfortable to use them rather than dive into Google or social search. We developed St Tropez House’s app in 2017, and, even in its unchanged form, it still attracts quality clients.
Which digital marketing strategies are worth utilising on social media?
What I love and use a lot now is Live Open Houses on Instagram. This is undoubtedly one of my best marketing strategies for luxury hospitality top tips.
Whenever we visit a property, be it for a professional photo shoot, client visit, or property check-up, we schedule a ‘direct show’ and then go live to emulate a real client visit. We then post it on a grid and repost on stories. We take it off the grid after a couple of days because it does not look as professional as a carefully staged photo shoot. However, it does give a sense of reality and raw authenticity to our image, which customers appreciate.
How can the luxury hospitality industry take advantage of social media?
Hospitality, especially the luxury hospitality industry, must fully embrace and dive into social media as a key element to survival. Social media is a great way to put your brand front and centre of clients’ eyes by posting authentic content that resonates with your target audience.
What are some effective ways to provide personalised experiences to your customers?
Live open houses, as mentioned above, and the creation of informative and fresh stories and reels are of utmost importance.
Is digital marketing performing better than traditional marketing?
Yes, there is no question that digital marketing outperforms traditional marketing in the world of luxury hospitality. The are many reasons for this; however, the primary reason is that digital marketing is trackable and measurable, meaning you can truly understand what works and what doesn’t and then tailor your strategy accordingly. For many reasons but the principal reasons: it is trackable and most importantly measurable.
How is cryptocurrency changing the luxury hospitality industry?
Cryptocurrency still represents only a tiny minority. However, the truth is the ‘crypto nouveau riche’ have certain amounts of cash to offload, and it might not be possible for them via standard routes. Companies are increasingly opening up to this and are now providing ways to purchase luxury services in crypto. It is entirely legal, and once over a tipping point, it will ripple through the entire industry. Cryptocurrency offers convenience and speed, which is especially beneficial for last-minute deals.
As consumer trend analysts GWI note, “the global cryptocurrency market will more than triple by 2030, hitting a valuation of nearly $5 billion. Whether they want to buy into it or not, investors, businesses, and brands can’t ignore the rising tide of crypto for long”.
Brands seeking the best marketing strategies for luxury hospitality would be wise to tap into this burgeoning market.
Is VR the future of hospitality?
Yes, virtual reality is the next step up from video and, of course, will gradually increase its market share. Hospitality knowledge platform Revfine perfectly explains how VR has particular appeal and applications for the hospitality industry because it can ‘digitally transport potential customers to a hotel or travel destination’.
How do you establish a sense of exclusivity?
One way to establish a sense of exclusivity is by offering personalised service and communicating this through a flawless digital experience at every touchpoint.
Anyone can post photos of a luxury property online and add a ‘contact me’ button. What very few can do is effectively communicate (be it a meeting, video call or WhatsApp chat) the time the light of the sun perfectly hits the garden, what sports equipment is in the gym, how fast the internet really is and what is the forte of a chef; not to mention how long it will actually take to drive to a local market during rush hour in Saint Tropez.
If you would like more best marketing strategies for luxury hospitality, contact Relevance today. Their team of digital marketing experts have helped some of the world’s leading luxury hospitality brands implement innovative marketing strategies that deliver results.