Why Art is an Effective Marketing Strategy for Hotels

Hotels with interesting art displays, thought-provoking pieces, and controversial works will always be talked about. This is the idea behind the trend that is now dominating the hospitality industry that is art tourism. Using intrigue and curiosity to drive people into their property’s doorstep, more and more hotels double up as art museums and galleries as they acquire and house massive art pieces in their properties.

Art decor is not just being displayed in your hotel room for ornamental purposes, but rather as a hoteliers’ marketing strategy. According to The New York Times, installing art in the most unexpected of ways challenges guests to think more deeply about their experience at a hotel. People always talk. Despite this day’s advancement in technology, one of the best and effective marketing strategies is word of mouth.

Today, hotels are more than just buildings with rooms and beds; it slowly evolves into space for arts to be filled with paintings, sculptures and other artworks as décor. Hoteliers are thinking even farther outside the frame, installing art in the most unexpected of ways and challenging guests to think more deeply about their experience. Art has become a fundamental, rather than ornamental, element of hotel design.

“The art is a part of the identity of the hotel,” said Jason Pomeranc, a co-owner of the Thompson LES, “and it integrates into the architecture, design, concept and what we ethereally call the vibe, the intellectual soul of the hotel.”

Collecting and displaying art is considered one of the biggest trend in hospitality and tourism today. It is used as a tool in inviting, intriguing, and convincing all kinds of people from all over the globe to travel, explore, and get to know one’s history, culture, and identity through art displayed in hotels. As a matter of fact, this trend is being observed not only in hotels and inns but even in restaurants, airports and public transportation stations as well.

Truly, it is one way of introducing a story to guests without words or without a need of a tour guide, without traveling to many places, without the need to cramp up time. Hotels are upgraded from merely a place to spend the night into a venue for learning, connection, interaction, and interpretation through art.

Because of the rise of a new population of travelers seeking for temporary accommodations, hotels are considering how they can relate more to these young professionals who are said to want to hit two birds with one stone. In order for them to market their hotels to this age cohort, they integrated art and experience found within the comforts of their hotels.

There is a growing number of hotels all over the world who compete with the leading art galleries in acquiring artworks, that essentially will attract more guests. Some even convert their property to an exhibit, hosting programs that hone the interest of people art—in any of its forms.

Art incorporated with tourism gives a cultural lift on every travel or trip. Ideally, hotels feature the artworks of their local artists, as a way of giving them exposure, and at the same time sharing the culture of their place to their visitors. Because of this, people don’t only view artistic hotels as aesthetic, but also as a cultural phenomenon that they can connect to and learn a few things from. It is also a bonus that unlike museums and art galleries, is generally free to view; you’re not likely to have to stand in line, and there are armchairs to flop in.

Overall, the hotel industry has discovered that incorporating unique pieces into a property’s design can enhance the décor, feel and ambiance of a hotel – regardless of its classification: luxury or budget.

How will your hotel art stand out?

Today’s hotel industry battle to be the top choice of tourists and travelers does not only revolve on the quality of service, the state of its facilities, or the reasonability of its rates. Today, guests are also after experience, and something to please their eyes, minds, and spirits during their stay.

The New York Times have noted it, the innovative world combined with the new breed of guests—the millennial, are pushing hotels of any kind to push beyond their limits and means, just to seek and appeal to their “desire for new experiences and stand out in a competitive market.” One way to do it? Art. This trend of adventurous, knowledge and experience travelers is only beginning. Currently, one-third of all travelers are millennial — a percentage that will only increase. By 2020, it’s projected that half of the money spent in the travel sector will come out of the pockets of millennial. Indeed, in the coming years, this age group will be shaping the tourism industry over the next decade.

During the past few years, the hospitality industry has been witnessing the rise of the newest trend—Art Tourism, which does not only promote a locality’s art through exhibits and museums, but through and within the hotels as well. From local artists to world-renowned painters, sculptors and the like, hotels have been scrambling to house a collection, beautiful and noteworthy enough to gain attention, hence, an influx of guests curious of what they can offer.

“People are really wanting to collect these experiences,” said Jonathan Frolich, vice president for global brands at Hyatt Hotels’ Andaz brand. “They’re looking to be immersed in local culture.”

With almost every hotel adapting this marketing strategy, how can your hotel stand out? Here are some ways you can do to get your hotel art noticed:

Get as much publicity as possible.

Set up your own online brand. Create an identity online as part of your marketing strategy. As said earlier, the rise of millennial as the great chunk of travelers today can give you a clue on how to expand your network and reach. Have an active presence online. Showcase your hotel and its art through social networking sites. Write blogs. Conduct events and use it as public relations.

“People want to Instagram. People want to tweet about it,” said Gavi Wolf, a founder of Indiewalls tells The NY Times.

Never underestimate the power of these platforms. The most important thing is being consistent. Post a photo once or twice a week. Publish posts once or twice a month. Engage with your audience and produce click-worthy uploads.

Use your art to tell a story.

Don’t just display an artwork just for the sake of it. Sometimes, people feel when hotels are trying too hard to go with the trends, not to serve their guests better. Be genuine and invest in artworks that are truly in line with your brand, your story and your hotel’s identity. It is important to have a connection—with your artworks and your guests as well.

What story do you want to tell your guests? What kind of hotel are you? More importantly, what kind of people run this place? Your art could be one way of making one-way conversations with the people who will choose to stay in your property.

Your goal should not only be one of the hotels with the biggest art collections, but be a hotel that tells their story, their brand and their identity through the artworks seen inside it. Successful hotel doesn’t always have to have the most expensive, most popular and biggest art pieces in the world. Most of the time, its about the connection that is felt by the guests through art and how did it make them feel during their stay.

Study your market and act on it.

People always talk. Despite this day’s advancement in technology, one of the best and effective marketing strategy is the word of mouth. Hotels with interesting art displays, thought-provoking pieces and controversial works will always be talked about. Intrigue and curiosity is one method of driving people to your property’s doorstep. At the same time, magnificent, jaw dropping collections are also the talk of the town.

In the end, while the world’s tourists are looking for the same thing, a hotel can truly stand out by being true to its origins, its vision, its character. The differences of approaches these hotels do in order to keep up may be synonymous, but they are unique at the same time. Guests value art more than you think. It is important to relay your message, brand, and story to your market and use art to your advantage.