Mountains are closed for the winter and the snow-packed slopes are starting to melt; another ski season is in the books! Now that the hill is a bit quieter, it’s the perfect time to think about your marketing strategy and what you can do to level it up for next season before the snow starts to fall again.
Act on the data you have at your fingertips
As a resort marketer, you have valuable data coming in daily from lift ticket, season pass, ski school, rental, lodging, and on-resort purchases. This data is often living in multiple systems which makes it tough to view in a holistic way. Funneling all this data into one platform is key to gaining a 360-degree view of your guests, so you can clearly see what they’ve purchased and when they are visiting.
By using a data driven marketing platform that cleanses and enriches your data, you eliminate the possibility of incorrect, duplicate, or incomplete information about your customers and create a “golden record” of each one. Then, you can use insights such as how long they’ve been a guest, their average spends, and demographic and geographic information to create personalized, omni-channel campaigns that have a higher potential for guest engagement and conversion.
Segment your guests to create tailored messages
Just as a ski vacation is not one-size-fits-all, neither is your marketing strategy. Segmentation allows you to pinpoint a group of individuals based on what you know about them and initiate a relationship by speaking directly to their needs. Once your data is compiled in a clean, usable format you can target your audience based on things like:
- Season Passholders vs. Lift Ticket Purchasers — Season passholders are valuable guests and therefore should receive thoughtful, tailored messaging. Maybe you create a scan-based campaign to let them know when they break-even on their pass, or you want to keep them in the loop on upcoming passholder discounts. And when season pass sales come around, you’ll want to know who you’re asking to renew, and who you’re trying to upsell to.
- Local vs. Destination Guests – Where your guests are visiting from has a big impact on their purchase behavior. Guests from out of state tend to be more receptive to lodging and advanced purchase messaging, while those within a driving radius may care more about on-mountain experiences. You can also take this into consideration with timing — it may be more worthwhile to include destination guests into holiday campaigns while you focus on locals for early season and spring skiing.
- Cross-Selling and Upselling – A guest that purchased a beginner ski lesson may need to purchase ski rentals as well. Or maybe you want to sell lodging to those who already have another product on the books. These types of messages are great for pre-arrival or post-purchase campaigns which receive great engagement and can bring in additional revenue before guests even get to the mountain.
A data driven marketing platform gives you the ability to drill down your audience into segments like these, and it also supports a crawl, walk, run strategy. Segmentation can get seemingly complicated quickly, but the right tool lets you start small and build more sophisticated layers into your segmentation over time.
Personalize communication based on where your guests are in their journey
Do you know who your most loyal guests are (also known as your VIP customers)? How about those that are lapsed and may just need a friendly nudge to visit you again? Personalizing messages based on where your guests are in their journey can have a huge impact on conversion and retention. With the right insight into when a guests’ last visit was, what their average or lifetime spend is, as well as custom calculations that tell you who your most loyal guests are, you can begin to custom-build campaigns that reach them at the right time. This is a great way to keep your VIP guests engaged and reward them for their loyalty or launch a re-engagement campaign to win-back those who haven’t visited in a couple years.
How to collect more valuable data about your guests
Your point-of-sale, booking, ticketing, and other resort systems provide a wealth of customer data. But there’s some data that those systems don’t provide such as lifestyle or interest information. Or, maybe someone is interested in learning more about your resort but hasn’t visited quite yet. That’s where website forms and landing pages come in handy.
Consumers today are increasingly seeking relevant content about things they are interested in and want to learn more about. Website forms and landing pages, in turn, help you learn more about your customers so you can provide them with that relevant information. If you have a goal next season to increase child ski school revenue, then maybe you want to ask visitors if they have children in the household to make sure they’re getting those tailored, specific-to-them messages.
Putting it into practice with Ascent360
As you start planning your strategy for the 22/23 ski season, data driven marketing will help you drive more engagement, keep existing guests coming back, and attract new guests. In fact, you can easily put these same strategies into place as a year-round resort, bringing in guests that are interested in summer activities like gondola rides, hiking, mountain biking, etc.
The Ascent360 data driven marketing platform is built to help you keep your customers engaged and drive sales no matter the season. We help you ingest your customer data, cleanse and enrich it, and turn it into actionable insights for segmentation and personalization. Whether you want to focus on your “most valuable” guests, re-engage those who are lapsed, or drive more revenue through pre-arrival or post-purchase campaigns, Ascent360 can help you create the right message for every type of guest.
Get started with the tool that enriches your data from multiple resort systems!