OTAs are the second and third top advertisers on Google. One of the biggest differences between OTAs and hotels is how much they spend annually on their marketing budgets. For example, Priceline spent an estimated $2.8 billion on marketing last year, while Marriott’s estimated annual marketing budget is about $100 million. According to Morgan Stanley Research, Priceline and Expedia spent more than $5.7 billion on direct advertising, with only about $5.3 billion total for the five largest hotel brands (Hilton, Marriott, IHG, Choice, and Accor).
The great marketing option, specifically for independent hotels is the content marketing. Content marketing is the production of compelling content, such as how-to-guides, photo and video galleries that inspire guests to book with the property. However, this is labor intensive and takes a whole lot of time. It may require hiring someone, or outsource the content marketing job to the professionals to create and post compelling relevant content. The right content and, equally, positive guest reviews boost hotel direct booking.