Bed and Breakfast Marketing: How to Market Your B&B

Bed and breakfast marketing is an intricate dance designed to showcase your charming establishment, entice potential guests, and boost your room revenue.

The art of B&B marketing involves deploying a diverse array of strategies through multiple channels, including your website, listings on booking platforms, and social media platforms, all in a bid to capture the wandering eyes of travelers.

In this digital age, where competition is fierce and travelers are discerning, success hinges on your ability to be proactive, precise, and inventive in your marketing and sales endeavors.

Nonetheless, the terrain of bed and breakfast marketing can be quite treacherous at times, presenting challenges that demand creative solutions.

  1. It’s difficult to rank on search engines against your competitors

Once, a handful of strategic keywords and a few backlinks could secure a prime spot on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). However, in today’s crowded online landscape, teeming with travel content and the domination of online travel agencies, achieving organic visibility has become a formidable task.

  1. The battle for traveler attention

Navigating the path of the online booking journey is no small feat for travelers planning their adventures. While they yearn to explore their options and destinations with convenience, their limited time and attention span create a daunting hurdle for smaller properties vying for their notice.

  1. The elusive repeat customer

Travel is a precious indulgence for most individuals, often limited to one or two excursions per year. This scarcity makes it challenging for B&Bs, especially those offering unique experiences in distinctive locales, to secure repeat clientele. With travelers frequently seeking novel destinations and accommodations, building a base of loyal guests can be a Herculean task.

To assist you in navigating these challenges, this helpful post strives to present a comprehensive guide to bed and breakfast marketing, full of invaluable tips to usher more guests through your welcoming doors.

B&B Marketing Strategy: Quick Takeaways

  • Develop a Strong Online Presence: Creating a user-friendly B&B website with high-quality photos, a clear description of the amenities, and services offered is essential to attract potential guests. Optimizing the website for search engines can also help to improve visibility.
  • List on Multiple Booking Platforms: Bed and breakfast owners should list their businesses on various booking platforms, such as Booking.com and Airbnb, to reach a broader audience. Ensuring that all the listings have accurate and up-to-date information is crucial to avoid confusion and negative reviews.
  • Engage with Potential Guests on Social Media: Engaging with potential guests on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram can help to build a community, showcase the unique features of the property, and attract new guests. Consistently posting high-quality content, responding to inquiries promptly, and encouraging guests to share their experiences can also increase visibility.
  • Provide Exceptional Guest Experiences: Providing guests with an exceptional experience can lead to positive reviews, repeat bookings, and recommendations to others. Offering personalized attention, local recommendations, and special amenities can create a memorable experience for guests and set the bed and breakfast apart from competitors.
  • Ask for Reviews: Positive reviews can significantly impact the reputation of a bed and breakfast. Asking guests to leave reviews on various platforms like Google, TripAdvisor, and Yelp can help to boost the business’s credibility and attract new guests. Responding to reviews, both positive and negative, in a professional and empathetic manner can also demonstrate the business’s commitment to guest satisfaction.

Why Bed and Breakfast Marketing is Important

Marketing your bed and breakfast isn’t just a choice; it’s a necessity.

It’s the primary means to consistently secure bookings and generate revenue.

Without marketing, potential guests will struggle to find information about your property and make reservations.

Today’s travelers are meticulous researchers.

They don’t usually book a stay after stumbling upon your B&B website for the first time.

They take their time, exploring various options before making a decision. Therefore, you need to be patient and persistent in your marketing efforts.

Bed and breakfast marketing serves two vital purposes:

  1. Building Awareness: It helps potential guests discover your B&B. Effective marketing ensures that your property stands out and becomes a recognized option in the competitive hospitality market.
  2. Establishing Trust: Trust is crucial in the hospitality industry. Marketing helps create trust, not only among potential guests but also among those who have already stayed with you. It solidifies your reputation and encourages repeat business.

In summary, marketing for your bed and breakfast is essential for survival in the competitive world of travel and accommodations.

It’s the key to consistently attracting guests and ensuring your business thrives.

How to Make the Most of B&B Marketing

  1. Identify Your Ideal Guests

First and foremost, pinpoint your target audience. B&Bs attract a diverse array of travelers, including millennials, groups, solo adventurers, and more. It’s essential to determine the segment that aligns best with your B&B.

Analyze past data to uncover your primary clientele from the previous year. Were they families, groups, honeymooners, or recent college graduates? Use this insight to define your target audience.

  1. Establish Your Online Presence

Having a website is non-negotiable in today’s business landscape. It’s an integral part of your bed and breakfast marketing plan. In an era where guests turn to Google to book their stays, your website must be easily discoverable.

Moreover, guests who find your B&B through Google or other online travel agencies will eventually land on your website. Without one, you risk losing potential visitors.

Your website should showcase your B&B with photos, videos, and engaging content. You can integrate a booking engine for direct reservations and ensure it’s SEO-optimized to bolster your online presence.

  1. Emphasize Your Unique Offerings

B&Bs offer more than mere accommodation; they provide an immersive experience. Travelers seek stays that immerse them in the local culture. Whether you’re a former plantation home or a quaint chateau, showcase what sets you apart.

If you lack such unique infrastructure, consider offering extra amenities like guided tours, cooking classes, or wine tastings. These gestures leave a lasting impression and promote your B&B effectively.

  1. Harness the Power of Airbnb

Airbnb has become a go-to platform for travelers seeking local and intimate accommodations. It drives a substantial number of guest bookings annually. Ensure your profile is accurate and complete on Airbnb to maximize your B&B’s visibility.

Consider using a channel manager for real-time inventory management, and explore technology providers recognized by Airbnb as preferred software partners.

  1. Dive into Social Media Marketing

To thrive in the hospitality industry, you must engage with your target audience on social media platforms. Establish profiles on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Regularly update them with captivating visuals and content.

Quality content is key. Share images of delightful breakfast dishes, local attractions, and special offers. Engage your audience through conversations and hashtags relevant to your business.

  1. Expand Your Reach on OTAs

Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) dominate online bookings. Listing your B&B on multiple OTAs enhances credibility and widens your audience reach. A channel manager simplifies inventory management across these platforms.

Choose OTAs that align with your B&B’s location and budget, such as B&Bfinder and Bedandbreakfast.com.

  1. Run Enticing Promotions

Promotions are a proven bed and breakfast marketing strategy. Craft packages and deals to attract guests during peak and off-peak seasons. Celebrate special days or events and organize workshops or festivals to entice visitors.

Last-minute deals and short stay packages also boost bookings.

  1. Explore Online Advertising

Online advertising, including Google ads (just like with PPC management for hotels), remarketing ads, Facebook ads, and more, can significantly enhance your B&B’s visibility. Invest in compelling ads that resonate with your audience and drive clicks.

  1. Harness the Power of Content Marketing

Content is a potent tool in your marketing arsenal. Optimize your website content for appeal. Craft engaging blogs and articles that showcase local attractions, culture, and history.

Publishing such content not only enhances your website’s search engine ranking but also positions your B&B as an authority in the eyes of potential guests.

How to Make Sure Your Bed and Breakfast Marketing Plan is Effective

To make sure your bed and breakfast marketing plan consistently delivers results, staying attuned to the latest marketing trends and traveler behaviors is essential.

It’s a dynamic field that demands ongoing adjustments.

Balancing marketing efforts with the daily operations of your B&B can be challenging. Therefore, it’s prudent to periodically step back and evaluate your approach.

Here are some tips to keep your marketing plan fresh and effective:

  1. Dedicate Time for Research

Allocate a specific time each week for in-depth research. Consider using Fridays to immerse yourself in business journals and marketing blogs. Alternatively, utilize Wednesdays for a midweek recharge to seek new ideas and strategies to reach your target audience.

  1. Prioritize Social Listening

Maintain a presence on top social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. While regular posting and encouraging engagement are crucial, active listening to your social followers is equally vital. Pay close attention to feedback in comments and direct messages as it provides valuable insights into your brand’s perception among your target audience. Dedicate time daily to review and respond promptly to comments and feedback on your social networking sites.

  1. Monitor Your Analytics

Regularly review your analytics to gauge the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. Evaluating key metrics should be done at least once a week, if not daily. Understanding website traffic and the demographics of your online content’s audience allows you to refine your marketing strategies for better results.

  1. Embrace “Small Data”

“Small data” refers to bite-sized pieces of information that can be swiftly and effectively incorporated into your online marketing strategy. Utilize various types of small data to enhance your bed and breakfast marketing plan:

  • Keyword research
  • SEO rankings
  • Competitor rankings
  • Social media comments and online reviews
  • Guest opinions of your B&B
  • Guest opinions of your competitors
  • Channel reports
  • Booking popularity by day
  • Types of travelers booking with you

Leveraging this small data can have a significant impact. An evidence-based marketing plan that aligns with current trends will attract more visitors to your B&B website and boost conversion rates.

Your B&B Marketing Questions, Answered

How do I market my bed and breakfast business?

Marketing a bed and breakfast business requires a strategic approach to attract potential guests.

The first step is to develop a strong online presence by creating a user-friendly website and optimizing it for search engines. It’s also essential to list the business on various booking platforms, such as Booking.com and Airbnb, to expand reach.

Additionally, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram can help to engage with potential guests and build a community. Providing exceptional guest experiences and asking for reviews can also boost the business’s reputation and attract new guests.

What is the target market for a bed and breakfast?

The target market for a bed and breakfast largely depends on its location, amenities, and services offered.

However, generally, bed and breakfasts cater to individuals or couples seeking a unique and personalized travel experience.

Additionally, business travelers who prefer a homely environment or families who desire more space and comfort than a hotel can also be potential customers.

Bed and breakfasts also tend to appeal to travelers looking for a more intimate and secluded setting, such as those in rural or mountainous regions.

What is the best business structure for bed and breakfast?

Choosing the best business structure for a bed and breakfast depends on the owner’s preferences and goals. A sole proprietorship is the simplest option, and it requires minimal paperwork and offers full control.

However, a limited liability company (LLC) offers personal liability protection and tax benefits. Incorporating the business as a corporation provides added protection and credibility, but it is more complex and requires more significant legal and tax requirements.

Consulting with a business lawyer or accountant can help determine the most suitable structure for the bed and breakfast.

Making the Most of Your B&B Marketing Strategy

Having a strong marketing strategy is essential for the success of a bed and breakfast business.

By creating a user-friendly website, listing the business on booking platforms, engaging with potential guests on social media, providing exceptional guest experiences, and asking for reviews, B&B owners can attract more guests and build a loyal customer base.

It’s also crucial to understand the target market and tailor the marketing efforts to their needs and preferences. Lastly, choosing the right business structure can provide added protection and tax benefits.

By implementing these strategies, B&B owners can create a profitable and thriving business that provides unique and personalized experiences for their guests.

Hey! I'm Alexander - the founder of Wizard of Tourism!

About the author

Alexander has been working with business in the travel and tourism industries since 2012. With over a decade of experience, Alexander and Wizard of Tourism strive to help those in the travel industry grow their business online.