Curate your curation service
I’ve had a rant about this before I think, but I can’t resist it again. I have just been looking at the curation service of a local international hotel and it seems that they have a difference definition of ‘curate’ than I do. We seem to have different definitions of ‘destination marketing’ too.
Look at it this way. You are a hotel in a popular tourist destination. And you’re not the only hotel; there’s a lot of competition around. You are right to use curation services. They are a great way to show people what’s going on in your area. So why, in this hotel’s ‘online paper’ did I find the following:
- Burger King are adding ten new menu items.
- An office campus in a nearby competing tourist area has just been sold
- A plane in Siberia has crashed killing most of the people on board
- There are traffic delays locally because of a traffic accident
- An article about a fatal shooting that took place a hundred miles away
- An article explaining that hotels in the state are complaining that making their pools and hot tubs accessible to the handicapped would cost too much
- Someone’s opinion that the parking in a sports arena twenty miles away is too expensive
- An article about our state’s pro-gun laws
Now, you tell me how on earth is that going to attract anyone to the hotel? There was just one article about the hotel itself and the rest was nonsense like the above. One by one …
- The hotel is an international hotel. It has an excellent restaurant and two bars which serve food. It has in-room dining. So why is it promoting a fast food joint? I’m sure that there are some guests who love Burger King but I am equally sure that there are some potential guests who don’t see themselves as ‘Burger King people’.
- As a tourist, I don’t care about the fact that commercial property has sold. But thank you anyway for drawing my attention to the other nearby resort. I’ll go and have a look and see what hotels are like there.
- If there are golden rules in the hospitality industry surely one of them is to never refer to items such as plane crashes. How many of your guests have arrived by plane? Do you really want to put the idea of a plane crash into their minds just when they are thinking of flying in to stay with you?
- Ditto, more or less. Does this mean that your area is a dangerous one with lots of traffic accidents? After all, I don’t know my way around and I’ll be in a rental car. Maybe I should avoid your area?
- Just as bad if not worse! OK the shooting wasn’t local but it was in the same state. Oh, and I read the article. It seems that it was an innocent person that was shot.
- Oh, so hotels don’t want to lose profits by making their pools accessible to my old granny who is in a wheelchair eh? I guess that your hotel is one of them so why have you mentioned it otherwise? I’ll find somewhere else to take granny. And even if I don’t have a wheelchair-bound relative, you’ve just told me that your profits are more important than your guests. Or at least, that’s how it seems to me …
- I don’t know why the hotel is mentioning places twenty miles away when there’s so much to do in the local area. But go ahead, tell me that I don’t want to go there because its too expensive to park. Puzzling…
- Oh I didn’t know your state had pro-gun laws. Thank you so much for letting me know. In view of this I think I’ll be better off going somewhere else, after all.
Why did they even send it out? Now, just to show my own curating skills, :) here are a few articles from a destination curation that I sent out a couple of hours ago:
- A new menu at a local hotel
- Details of the art exhibition at a local museum
- Show times at a local theater
- A review of a local restaurant
- Details of local historic walking tours
- A major local event coming up in four weeks
- A general guide to the immediate area
- How to estimate cab fares
- Local weather report
- The latest fashions in swimwear
Better? And do you know how long the curation process takes every day? About five minutes. So that’s another black mark against the hotel – that no-one on their staff can take five minutes to attend to their marketing.
If you’re going to curate, CURATE!