Since your guests decide to stay with you in large part due to where you are located, it is in your best interest to promote your local area. You can do this with website links, menus, guidebooks, maps, and more to tell your guests about your area's attractions, events, and concerts. Remind them why bed and breakfasts are better than hotels.
Start by having a links web page on your website that refers your guests to local places of interest.
- Art & Cultural Activities: theater, museum, symphony, ballet, etc.
- Area History: historical sites, battlefields, visitors center
- Fine Dining: you can emphasize your own restaurant if you have one and/or recommend local restaurants
- Recommended Guide & Recreational Services: tours, biking, fishing, hiking, river guides, etc.
- Outdoor Recreation, Wildlife Activities, & Gardens: birding, golf courses, gardens, parks, recreation, wildlife sanctuary
- Specialty Stores & Services: bakery, brewery, tea, herbs, landscaping, food stores, gift shops, spa, etc.
- Sports Events, Family Activities, & Concerts: concert venues, concert tickets, sports arenas, sports tickets, arts and drama
Of course, depending upon your location, you may have different categories. For example, your bed and breakfast may be on the beach and/or have its own spa. Emphasize the places you know that your visitors like to see and activities they like to do. You can also offer specific packages based upon the special occasion your guest is celebrating or their particular interests.
When your guests arrive at your bed and breakfast, direct them to a welcome table that features brochures from local attractions and restaurants. Think about having a guidebook or a basket full of local maps, fliers, and more. Local Chambers of Commerce and Visitors Centers will have various information for you to display.
You may even arrange with some of these local places (such as local restaurants) to offer your guests a discount if they mention that they are staying with you. This is great for a number of reasons:
- You look good for having this arranged ahead of time for your guests
- The local business owner benefits from the referral
- Your guests benefit from the discount
- It is a win-win-win situation!
Thus, you can use your website to post local links, your inn to provide brochures for guests when they arrive, and your connections with local restaurants and other businesses to have deals in place for your guests.
Do not forget the power of video to highlight local attractions near your bed and breakfast and the power of social media to spread your message. By following this advice, you will take attract more guests to your bed and breakfast as well as position yourself as an expert on your local area.
Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography