How to attract locals

By looking for guests that are from another city, state or country you are limiting yourself from receiving many more reservations. Sometimes the answer to how to increase your occupancy is right around the corner. 

One solution to pass the test of a low season or a low week with flying colours is to have a look at your neighbours. Your locals can be the solution to your bottleneck. Here is how you attract your locals:

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- Find out what your locals are looking for

- Do they want to enjoy a full service package for a few days?

- Do they just want to get out of their own four walls?

- Do they want to have a break from their daily routines?

- Do they want a break from cooking?

- Do they want to enjoy a very tasty breakfast, lunch, or dinner?

- Do they want to enjoy a romantic evening?

The more information you obtain from your locals about what they are looking for, the easier it is for you to come up with tempting offers. 

Here is a two-step process to find out what your locals really want and to make your offers sell like hot cakes. 

1. Create a short survey. Come up with 3-6 quick questions. The answers to these questions should give you a better idea of what you should offer your locals. For instance: What would you like to have for breakfast? Omelette, fried eggs, fresh orange juice, etc., or a bit of everything? Do you prefer to sit outside on a terrace or inside looking at our beautiful mountains? Your questions should provide value and information. First, you are actually wanting to obtain information from your locals, and second you want to let the reader know what you can offer them. Make your questions visible. Let your readers imagine what they could experience while visiting you.

2. After you’ve received the answers to your survey either through email or postal, it is time to create your flyer / invitation with services highlighted that have been chosen the most. The readers will be astonished to see that you took their wishes into account and they will feel committed to visit you.   

There are many people out there that do not want to cook on weekends. Instead they love to get out of their house, and enjoy being carefully attended to by waiters and others. 

As soon as you have the right information handy, it is a piece of cake to design a flyer with the necessary information on it and distribute it throughout your neighbourhood. You make this offer even more interesting if you mention that it is only valid for people living in this neighbourhood. This constraint makes the whole offer more appealing and the locals will feel very special and unique. Furthermore, add scarcity that makes the locals move and check your place out. Add a due date for making a reservation and mention that it’s only valid for as long as space allows. Scarcity and a specific due date will provide you with the reservations for your breakfast, lunch or dinner and even some rooms that you are looking to make some profits from in your low season.

In addition, approach businesses that surround you. Try to come up with an interesting joint venture plan or ask if you are allowed to display flyers of your accommodation business in their shops. If you are open for it, you can ask a business owner if they might be interested in creating an event with you. 

If you want to continuously fill your accommodation business then being known for your services / being popular is one of the most crucial points to work on. 

Get in the game, and get your name and services out there!