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Communicate now

It’s the middle of summer and for many innkeepers this is the busiest time of the year. In a perfect world you’re filled to capacity every night, with plenty of support staff to help make things run smoothly. In a good world, every weekend is booked and you have a decent amount of mid-week traffic.

Whatever your situation, at some point the slower seasons will be here and you’ll be longing for the steady income you’re experiencing right now. This time will arrive sooner for some than others, depending largely, though not exclusively on your location.

Whether you will begin to slow down in 6 weeks or 10 weeks, now is the time to start planning for those slower times. Now is the time to begin thinking about encouraging people who know you, maybe even some of your favorite guests, to visit during the “shoulder” seasons. Now is the time to communicate with your previous guests and tell them how nice it is to visit when the crowds aren’t competing for everything from dining reservations and theatre tickets to parking spaces. Now is the time to make time to plan the rest of your year.

That’s right. It takes a conscious effort to make the time, but the benefits you’ll see later in the year will be worth it in increased revenue because you have worked to put more heads in your beds. Your occupancy rate will go up and those pesky bills will be easier to pay. What’s not to like about this scenario?

Your options are many, including emailing previous guests with a targeted message, sending out an occasional general interest newsletter, making sure your guests have easy access to your blog so they’re up to date on what’s happening. Sending a hand-written post card to first time guests makes a lasting impression and can help to bring them back.

There are many things you can do. The important thing is to do something. You won’t regret it.