Doug Logan

9 Opportunities for Growth in Luxury Hotel & Resort Marketing

Demand for luxury travel is off the charts. Today's travelers look to upscale destinations to provide much-needed self-care, connection, and sheer indulgence. Brands with a strong digital presence can capitalize on unprecedented motivation by providing content and systems that make it as easy and enjoyable as possible to book the trip of a lifetime.

To explore this, we took a deep dive into 50 high-end properties and analyzed their performance across nine digital marketing tactics.

While travelers once looked online as a source of cost savings, this is now where they seek out sophisticated and highly curated experiences, complete with personalized upgrades and strong customer service.

There's no denying the importance of the internet in today's luxury travel landscape; at this point, the question is not whether to improve the digital experience, but how.

Preferred touch points and booking solutions are always changing, and, while it obviously behooves brands to keep up with these heightened expectations, this is easier said than done. Prep for success by taking a close look at our insights into which strategies are paying off — and which digital opportunities remain untapped.

Paid Search

Paid search is one of the most reliable and efficient digital strategies there is so there’s no wonder that the majority of the properties we analyzed are using it. This still varies considerably between property categories, however.

For example, while an impressive 94% of Hotels incorporate paid search into their marketing strategies, just two-thirds of wellness retreats currently do the same.

At this point, the how of paid search matters nearly as much as whether this strategy is used in the first place. A newer tactic, Google Hotel Ads represents one of the most impactful solutions for hoteliers, as it reaches users searching specifically for travel plans.

As with paid search in general, adoption of Google Hotel Ads varies dramatically between hospitality niches. Again, Hotels lead the charge, with 94% involved with Google Hotel Ads to some extent.

Meanwhile, Ranches once again lag, with just 60% adopting Google Hotel Ads. Perhaps most surprisingly, Resorts have yet to truly embrace this strategy; less than half are currently using Google Hotel Ads.

Organic Search

For years, search engine optimization (SEO) dominated hospitality marketing. SEO remains important, but its value has diminished somewhat, in part because mastering the Google algorithm is so difficult these days.

That's not to say that organic search should be neglected. High rankings on search engine results pages can still be hugely beneficial. This remains one of the best solutions for building relationships with highly qualified leads, who already know that they want to travel but simply need to decide where and when. This also represents a desirable long-term strategy, complementing the short-term boost offered through paid search.

Organic search can build on potentially missed opportunities to connect with customers who encounter friction with other platforms or solutions. For example, if Instagram fails to produce an instant conversion, users may return to search engines to seek additional information.

The Chateau Elan Winery & Resort exemplifies the value of a strong SEO strategy. Boasting the highest number of organic keywords they rank for, this elite brand reveals how strong SEO can make properties in unconventional — even challenging locations — stand out.


The phrase content is king may feel cliche and even outdated, but the concept still stands: brands that produce the most engaging, insightful, and authoritative content are better able to connect with today's discerning travelers. Not only does a strong content strategy boost overall brand reputation, it plays favorably into SEO and even social media strategies.

In an age of aspirational Instagram images and trendy TikTok videos, many consumers still prefer the deep insights garnered by traditional travel blogs.

Only 18% of the properties we analyzed have a blog. Additionally, most of those properties post infrequently on their blogs. What's more, consumers often struggle to locate blog content on these pages.


Aspirational images dominate the Instagram landscape, making this platform an ideal opportunity for luxury resorts and hotels to entice potential guests. In turn, would-be travelers look to Instagram for inspiration.

This is where the travel planning process begins, as evidenced by research published in the European Journal of Applied Economics. A 2021 study revealed that 80.1 percent of respondents sought travel information via social media, making this an even more popular source of insight than travel blogs or word of mouth.

Many Instagram users scroll with the specific intention of getting inspiration for future travel destinations. The vast majority tell researchers that the photos they see on Instagram increase their interest in traveling to specific destinations, or, at minimum, make them eager to travel in general.

Instagram represents a major success story in the luxury hospitality landscape. Most brands have clearly realized the value of this platform, with 87% of Hotels posting at least three times per week. Resorts are also frequent contributors, with 62% posting three times each week while nearly one-quarter make daily updates.

With Instagram, however, more updates aren't always better; this platform is the epitome of quality over quantity.

Luxury brands can capitalize on users' interest in Instagram travel content not only by posting regularly, but also, by ensuring that content moves beyond brand awareness alone to promote greater engagement. This means sharing links to booking pages, both in the bio area and on everyday updates. Optimize the booking process to reduce friction, so customers can easily act on their split-second, inspiration-guided decisions to hit the road.


Any successful social media strategy will be multi-tiered: encompassing both new content to delight followers and customer outreach via direct messages and comments. This means responding quickly when guests reach out with questions or feedback — and maintaining a respectful, yet upbeat tone that's consistent with brand messaging as a whole. While this is possible on Instagram, Facebook is often where followers turn for a more interactive experience.

This platform should also play heavily into paid marketing initiatives. Facebook ads capitalize on retargeting opportunities, which are some of the easiest marketing solutions to implement. Hence, their popularity among today's luxury travel brands.

Wellness Retreats, in particular, rely on Facebook ads to get the word out; of the 83% that have a presence on this platform, 80% of them run ads. This is also a popular solution among Ranches, with 80% currently running Facebook ads.

Travel ads build on the power of personalization by drawing details on availability and pricing to keep potential guests in the loop. Content is customized based on a wealth of insights that reveal what, exactly, will appeal to specific types of customers.


TikTok may cater to a younger and more technologically savvy audience than Instagram or Facebook, but there's no denying its newfound status as a marketing powerhouse — even in the luxury niche. This can be an amazing differentiator for properties that cater to younger guests, although marketing opportunities continue to expand as TikTok's user base grows more diverse.

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