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3 Big Problems Location Marketing Solves

Guest expectations have changed dramatically overnight. Luckily, advancements in location marketing have arrived to help marketers keep up with growing demands by bringing location data to the cloud.


We call this new category of technology “Location Marketing Cloud.” With it, marketers can take advantage of advancements in areas like geo-fencing and AI to know guests better than ever before and engage them with highly personalized marketing.



Already companies like Caesars Entertainment are using Location Marketing Cloud to enrich their existing systems of record, including Salesforce, with more than 70 different public location data points. These marketers are able to uncover new high-value audiences and potential customers, rapidly respond to trends, and delight guests with relevant offers on-property and online during the pre, during, or post stay guest experience.


For marketers in categories like gaming and hospitality that means solving a number of big challenges to keep up with growing competition and guest demands. Here are three of the most critical problems Location Marketing Cloud solves:


1. Identifying Unknown Guests

Many travelers visiting Vegas and like locations bounce around from property to property. In an increasingly crowded market, it can be difficult for marketers to attract guests to their properties, keep them there for long periods of time, and bring them back in the future.  


But how do you acquire and engage guests if many of the guests on your property - up to 50% - go unidentified because they booked through an OTA or didn’t directly transact, preferring to Venmo a friend?


With Location Marketing Cloud, marketers can place digital geo-fences around their locations and competitive or relevant locations to identify guests who post publicly from the property on social media. They can then bring these guests into the CRM and access dozens of data points highlighting where these guests enjoy going, their influence, and the types of experiences they prefer, such as luxury or budget travel. This enables marketers to target guests with highly relevant and delightful ads that match their interests.


For example, a guest that came on property to enjoy a concert, but didn’t stay the night, could be re-targeted with future entertainment opportunities or invited into a VIP nightlife program.


Companies like Caesars entertainment have used Location Marketing Cloud to drive 3X increases in media efficiency and have appended millions of customer records with public location data it uses to enhance guest experiences, as well as surprise and delight guests. “Location Marketing Cloud allows us to understand what customers are coming on to our property and if there’s an opportunity to engage them. It helps us append the data we already have on our customers to change the guest experience and arrival experience," said Ryan Thompson, SVP of Hospitality Marketing at Caesars Entertainment.


2. Meeting Changing Guest Expectations

It’s no secret that Millennial and Gen-Z guests are influencing big changes in the gaming and hospitality industries. These generations are less interested in luck-based gaming and are gambling less than older generations overall.


Whereas twenty years ago 90% of Vegas visitors gambled during their trip, today that figure has dropped to 74%. While the average Vegas visitor who gambled spends $541.18, the average Millennial spends less than half of that at $267.67.


Instead of stacking chips, younger travelers seek out experiences like intimate concerts, wild parties, and indulgent meals. In fact, more than 40% select travel destinations based on Instagrammability.


To meet changing guest expectations and keep up with trends, gaming and hospitality companies must stay closely connected with consumers and act quick. Location Marketing Cloud enables marketers to better understand where customers go and what experiences they enjoy sharing. By doing so, marketers can anticipate trends and rapidly engage travelers with relevant opportunities, such as new restaurant openings or pop-ups.


For one major retailer with nearly 1B in annual revenue, marketers were able to use location insights to identify that the guests coming on to their properties were also interested in the women’s clothing brand SheIn. They were then able to bring SheIn on as a pop-up opportunity that drove a 30% increase in guests sharing from its property, as well as a 181% increase in potential reach.



3. Standing Out in a Crowded Market

While younger travelers are driving changes at a higher rate than any other age group, across the board guests are demanding more personalization and customization. In fact, guests are 20% more likely to promote a hotel when they are offered personalized experiences, such as surprise and delight experiences or recommendations tailored to their interests at check-in. However, only 65% of hotel guests believe the hotels they are staying at really “know” them.


Location Marketing Cloud helps gaming and hospitality companies know guests better than ever before, as well as rapidly scale personalized experiences. Companies like Marriott International use location marketing to receive alerts when guests on-property post about a special event, such as a birthday, Bachelor or Bachelorette party, or engagement. Operations and VIP staff can then surprise that guest with a bottle of champagne or chocolates. They can also identify when influential guests come on-property, such as a food influencer, and connect them with special experiences, such as a chance to meet a celebrity chef.


For Marriott, leveraging location marketing and signals has driven more than 1 million additional guest engagements.  "Location Marketing Cloud not only enables us to engage seamlessly with our guests, but also deliver valuable insights into what guests are thinking and care about. It's helped us enhance loyalty and increase market share," said Craig Smith, President & Managing Director Asia Pacific, Marriott International.


Conclusion

All in all, we are more than a decade into a world where word-of-mouth, especially on channels like Instagram, inspires revenue. Guests engaging publicly on these channels - especially Gen-Z and Millennial guests - are not only interested in receiving special opportunities and perks from their favorite brands, but expect high-touch, personalized service. Unfortunately, only 65% of current hotel guests are satisfied that the hotels they are staying at really “know” them.


By bringing location data to the cloud, marketers can finally stop listening to their guests, and start acting on their interests and anticipating how to offer experiences that delight in real-time. By knowing their guests better, marketers can work smarter to win the second stay and beyond.


Lindsey Plocek leads marketing and communications at HYP3R. She is passionate about advising early-stage technology companies on their positioning, sales, marketing, and go-to-market strategies.