The lodging/hospitality industry is one of the very few to have adapted to the digital marketing techniques early on. Earlier the only way people booked hotel rooms were either through physical agencies (brick and mortar) or through telephone. This trend has almost completely been wiped out of the industry. The only major way customers book their rooms today is through online Customer Reservation System (CRS) either directly on the hotel’s website or an online travel agent site. The lodging industry has seen a sea change in the way they have been advertising in the past two decades. From billboard ads, newspaper ads to television and to now majorly online ads. One such example of a Hotel that has continuously updated its marketing tools is The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower in Mumbai, India.
The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower is a monumental structure with historic value to the country. Located in the financial capital of India, it is frequently visited by business professionals and leisure tourists from across the globe. The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel is generally at its peak occupancy rate throughout the year. More than a century old, the Taj Mahal Palace hotel is a symbol of pride to the city.
One thing very noticeable in the hotel/lodging industry is that when a customer goes back satisfied, apart from he/she being a repeat customer, he/she tends to spread the word across to friends and family and hence “word of mouth” marketing is usually considered to be the best marketing tool in this industry. With the age old heritage factor and the prime location of the hotel, usually change is difficult to be incorporated in the organization’s structure of marketing. But The Taj Mahal Palace has been one of the very first hotels to incorporate a website and indulge in online social marketing. With a distinct Facebook page, regular tweets of events and happenings, website interaction, etc. it has managed to keep the inflow of customers to a peak level. Even with many internationally well know hotel brands that have cropped up around the city, the Taj Mahal Palace has managed to remain the most dominant player in the market. The major reason has been the way it engages its customers regularly through various digital media tools.
With trends now towards social media, the hotel has taken a step forward to establish a social media marketing team that completely focuses on this medium of communication. With events being posted on the page and customer engagement through online interactions, it has managed to keep competitors at bay and continues to be the major player in the industry.