Groupon - The company that has been making waves recently starting from rejecting a $6 Billion offer from Google, raising $950 Million in private capital, and planning to go public towards the end of 2011 with an unofficial valued at $15 Billion. All is happening just in 2 years.
So, it is certainly worth talking a look at Groupon’s offering and how does it relate to the Hospitality Industry.
The Groupon concept:
In short, it is about ‘group deal’ buying.
To elaborate, Groupon has a huge subscriber list, in hundreds of thousands of people. All are looking for good, if not great deals. Some deals, can save consumers up to 90% of the retail price. Companies can post their group deal offers at the Groupon site, include any rules (if any), preset a time limit and the minimum number of deals, to take effect. Once the deal is on, purchasers will receive a confirmation and print the Groupon for redemption.
What is the viral effect here ? If you like a deal, you’ll share it with your friends, families and colleagues.
While it is obvious the consumers get a great deal, how does it help the businesses? Groupon is free for businesses, and it splits the revenue generated by the deal with the businesses.
But it is quite competitive to be featured, as Groupon is quite particular in working with top-notch companies. You’ll have to build credibility online via various rating sites.
How can Hotels benefit from Groupon ?
1. If your target market is ‘leisure travelers‘, you are in for a good opportunity: Leisure travelers are always looking for great deals. Offer a deal that is simply irresistible for them.
2. Create a package: If your property has got Spa, F&B, Concert, why not combine them together and create a package and post it on Groupon ? Encourage locals to give it a try ?
3. Explore synergistic partnerships: Work with companies in the Tourism, Spa, F&B, Events space in your area, create a compelling offer that leads to WIN-WIN opportunity for both of you.
Now, before you go and experiment with Groupon, think about the below:
* Do you think you can create ‘loyal customer base’ by offering such outrageous group deals?
* Does it affect your bottom line ?
* Will you not upset your existing loyal customers ?
* What is the frequency with which you’ll offer such group deals ?
* How can you make use of Groupon to sell unsold inventory ?
As with any marketing initiative, the key is ‘testing’ out new ideas and stick with the ones that are working and discard the rest.
Good Luck !.
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