Are you getting the maximum from your repeat guests?

Epitom Consulting

So far we have analyzed several hotel marketing tips and ideas that are especially relevant in the Sri Lankan context. In this post we are proposing a few tips to develop your own Sri Lankan hotel loyalty programme that would definitely help your hotel build a more loyal guest base.

How many of you are aware that your guests could be the best promoters of your hotel. It is a bitter truth that customer loyalty in the travel industry is vanishing. According to Deloitte research just 14% of air travel customers are loyal to the airlines that they usually travel with and only 8% of the hospitality customers stay loyal to the hotel brands. You might have noticed that the repeat purchase rate increases when you run promotions and deals. However those in the hospitality sector are still finding it difficult to build a strong loyalty among guests.

In the context of Sri Lanka, though there is no strong data evidence on the loyalty statistics, still most of the hotels do not think of the benefits of value driven, emotionally connected loyalty programmes. Most of these hotel marketing programmes in Sri Lanka just focus on some sort of random promotions which are strongly supported by real loyalty programmes. So how can a hotel increase loyalty by creating an emotional connection with the guests rather just trying to roll out promotions and deals?

Let’s start from the beginning itself. Read the entire article here

Stay in Touch with Your Guests at No Cost – Simple Email Marketing Technique for Hotels in Sri Lanka


Are you aware of the 80:20 rule in marketing?

20% of the business comes through 80% of new customers and 80% of the business comes through 20% of existing customers.

Most of the hotels in Sri Lanka spend their time and money in acquiring new guests while giving less importance to the existing guests. There is a perfect way to answer a frequently asked question “how to increase my hotel bookings at a low cost”. The answer is through a well strategized retention strategy. Getting leads from your existing customers is always easier than convincing unknown new guests. Their repetitive visits may not cost you much as a new guest’s visit costs.

In simple terms the ultimate objective of any hotel is to sustain a great occupancy rate to remain profitable in the business. It is evident that most of the hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka try to get guests through online bookings, heavy adverting, online travel agents, networking and personal contacts. All these are costly and sometimes the return on investment (ROI) would be lower compared to the return.

Now we shall move into discovering a retention tool which will be helpful to get more leads from your existing guests and allow you to keep in touch with them.


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How to use Tripadvisor for Hotels in Sri Lanka?

As per Olery research 81% of travelers check online hotel reviews before making a travel decision. What is your contribution online to grab their attention?

A common factor that is noticeable among Sri Lankan hotels, especially among the small and medium scale hotels is that a little or no attention is given to their online presence and reviews about their hotels in the internet. It is always important for hotels to control their online presence and they should pay attention to what guests are saying about their brands. However, most of the Sri Lankan hotels forget the importance of online reviews. For instance there are mixes of negative and positive comments about heaps of Sri Lankan hotels that are not officially attended to by the respective hotels. One factor for them to neglect these reviews, especially the negative ones is that they think they are getting enough bookings through their travel agents and are quite satisfied with their current occupancy rate with the least amount of effort that they put into marketing the hotels. Though the bookings are received through the travel agencies, the decision makers are the travelers and tourists who have started to depend on online reviews about hotels and places.

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“Sri Lanka is going to be one of the best destinations for tourism and leisure throughout the world this year, being ranked as the number one destination in the world to travel in 2013 by Lonely Planet and endorsed as one of top six destinations for world travellers in 2012 by the National Geographic Traveller magazine”, says Ragulan, founder of Epitom Consulting.

Epitom Consulting, a Marketing consultancy firm which is fast becoming an epitome of professionalism in the Sri Lankan consultancy knowledge world by serving its clients with the best. Ragulan explains that his business is dedicated to offering unparalleled Marketing consultancy and knowledge related services through an exceptional professional approach which ensures that the clients are successful, competitive and become leaders within their markets.

“On December 31st 2012, Sri Lanka welcomed her one millionth tourist while comfortably surpassing the targeted tourists arrival to the country of 950,000 for the year of 2012. However, unfortunately most of the hotels are not up to the standard from the tourists’ point of view and also not marketed adequately to attract more tourists into the country”, points out Ragulan.

As a result Epitom has decided to render its fullest support to hoteliers to uplift the marketability of their hotels. This particular service is named as Epitom’s Compact Hotel Solution which will be offered at an affordable budget that helps the small medium hotels to obtain the maximum benefit from the package.

“With the aim of offering the perfect job, the first step is a basic audit about the hotel that will be prepared free of charge. Epitom will do research about the hotel including its website, social media profiles and through TripAdvisor which is a global travel website that contains numerous travel related information, reviews, guides and options that play a vital role in travel related decisions making” stated Ragulan, explaining the strategy adopted by his firm.

“While going through the Trip Advisor reviews which are posted by guests who have visited Sri Lanka, we found many positive as well as negative reviews about the Sri Lankan hotels where most of them are not managed properly by the management” Ragulan mentioned.

“It is becoming very important to manage all the online as well as offline channels to attract more guests by which the hotels can be taken to the next level. Consequently, after all our research we decided to join hands with the hotels and provide customized services such as the Internet Marketing, Online vs. Offline marketing consulting (Branding, Customer Relationship Management, Loyalty Marketing), and web development. For more information mail us / call 071 303 2422.

Holiday in Sri Lanka

Sometimes when on holiday you desire for culture, history, nature and a profusion of places to go sightseeing without investing so much money. Sometimes you just wanted to lie down and enjoy the sounds and smells of the nature without the disturbance of civilization noises. Sometimes you wanted to enjoy food which is nourishes with spices of eastern culture and garnish in western style.  Other times you just wish for a stunning beach and plenty of fine dining along with peaceful and safety dives. If this is what your heart desires then welcome to Sri Lanka, Pearl of the Indian Ocean as it is more commonly called by the keepers of the sea.

Sri Lanka is the most natural sightseeing friendly island in the Indian Ocean and the popularity and number of tourists coming to the island keep on and still continues to grow and grow. One of the reasons for Sri Lanka to be most attractive tourist destination in Indian region is because it boasts the finest beaches in the world which enable tourist to do diving, swimming and coral sightseeing. Crystal clear waters which come and conquer the sands of srilankan shores will make our feet feel like silk cloth between the toes.

Not only is the ocean there is also another secret behind the success story of srilankan tourism. The secret is none other than the heritage historical places of Sri Lanka which illustrates the nation’s history and the importance of such an island in the middle of Indian Ocean. Anuradhapura, Polannaruwa and Kandy are growing as most popular tourist spot which resides in Sri Lanka. The historical importance of these places keeps on attracting tourist who is more interested in learning the culture of Sri Lanka.

Other than the beaches and historical importance, Sri Lanka is also an island which defines convention. According to island bio-geographic theory, small islands don’t have large mammals. Regrettably for theory Sri Lanka is an exemption, as the largest terrestrial mammal in Asia, the Asian Elephant, is found on the island. Sri Lanka is beyond hesitation that the best place in Asia to see the Asian Elephant. Uda Walawe National Park, to the south of the central mountain massif, and the tourists are assured to see elephants. During September and October an annual concentration of elephants, called ‘The Gathering’, takes place on the receding shores of the Minneriya Lake in Minneriya National Park.  ‘The Gathering’ is surely one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on the planet.

The tourism merchandise in Sri Lanka is growing and so too does the infrastructure of Sri Lankan transportation and accommodation facilities. There are mountains to tramp and hills to trek. These hiking spots are improved so that the tourists can enjoy the trekking of mountain with the worry about the safety of the lives. Sri Lanka is not only about the beach and what lies beneath the brilliant blue waters. It’s the culture which prevails in Sri Lanka which makes it special. Ever smiling, generous and always obliging people of Sri Lanka make the tourist feels they are welcomed to this wonderful island- A promise like no other.