When you plan a Online Marketing Strategy for hotels, one of the main concerns is the use of tactics that improve the conversion rate. On this matter, there is no doubt that remarketing has given us a powerful tool for personalizing digital advertising: we show our ads to users who already know us or who have already visited us and, therefore, they are more likely to convert into bookings. However, as important as working this, it is to activate prospecting strategies that allow us to discover and attract new audiences… something that is now much easier thanks to the Lookalike Audiences.
Brand awareness: the first step
To get an Online Marketing Plan that activates all the phases of the conversion funnel, there is no doubt that brand awareness must be the first step. However, the search of potential customers among users who do not know your brand yet is quite complicated… something like flirting with a stranger in a bar: if you do not know anything about him or her, you have less the chances of success. But, what if, among all those unknown users, we could find those who have similar profiles and behaviors to our current clients? That is what we can do with similar audiences on Facebook and Google Adwords.
The Lookalike Audiences (for Facebook advertising) or Similar Audiences (for Adwords advertising) use the machine learning to extract patterns (demographics, behavioral data, interests, etc.) from a customer database and search for new users that share those characteristics. That is, they use our remarketing lists to greatly facilitate the prospecting work and make the most of this type of campaign.
How to use Lookalike Audiences in your campaigns
The most important step when using similar audiences -whether it is an Adwords campaign or a Facebook campaign for hotels- is to select the data source: the original audience on which the search for new clients will be based. At this point, it is the main difference between both platforms.
Google Adwords Similar Audiences allow you to create audiences based on your remarketing lists; that is, user lists, identified by cookies and tracking codes, that have visited or have made a specific action on your website. So, for example, we could create a campaign targeted to users that have the same characteristics, interests, behaviors, browsing habits, etc. than those who have booked on our website. Or have visited a specific page. Or have sent a form … There are many possibilities.
On the other hand, the Facebook Lookalike Audiences also allow you to create campaigns based on the users of your website (for this it, is necessary to have the Facebook tracking pixel); but, in addition, it allows other data sources: your clients list and your Fanpage. For example, we could create a Facebook campaign targeted to users who share the same profile and interests as the users we have in our email database, the users who have reacted to a specific post, the users who are fans of our Fanpage, etc.
The main advantage of Facebook? That, in addition, uses a degree metric to allow you to decide the size of your similar audience and the match with the original audience. In other words: the smaller the similar audience, the more features it will share with the original source, and the other way around. Thus, depending on the objective we want to achieve with our campaign, we can decide between quality or quantity.
Advantages of using Lookalike Audiences for your campaigns
- Higher profitability of your hotel campaigns. In general, prospecting/brand audiences are huge and have poor quality in terms of segmentation; however, thanks to similar audiences, we can target our campaigns to a more specific audience and be more effective searching new clients.
- More effective than interests. Lookalike Audiences allow a greater customization, since it takes into account many variables (demography, search data, navigation data, interests, behaviors, etc.), as opposed to the interests targeting, which only takes into account the category of pages visited by the user.
- The conjectures disappear. In traditional marketing, the first step to launch a customer acquisition campaign has always been the creation of ‘type profiles’ (those profiles of fictitious clients that represent the majority of your potential customers): a hard work, for which it is necessary to collect a large amount of information, analyze it and draw conclusions … Thanks to similar audiences, in your digital campaigns, this whole process disappears. It is no longer necessary to make conjectures about demographic data, interests, needs, motivations, etc. that characterize your potential customers, as the Facebook and Google algorithm uses machine learning to show the ads directly to your potential audience. It sounds good, right?
Definitely, similar audiences are another step in online marketing (in general) and hotel marketing (in particular) when it comes to increase the conversion probabilities of your campaigns. What are you waiting to try it?