You probably know Campspot as the outdoor hospitality industry’s leading reservation management software—its intelligent business rules and unmatched user experience were made to drive bookings for campground operators. However, you may not know all of the ways Campspot can help you market your business to easily reach even more campers. Learn more about the clever, integrated tools that are available for Campspot users to grow their parks.
1. Email Marketing Integration
Mailchimp is a household name when it comes to email marketing. Campspot integrates directly with this email giant, which makes the process that much easier to send targeted messages to certain groups of campers. The possibilities for email marketing with the dual power of Mailchimp and Campspot are endless.
For example, you could email guests who are currently staying at your property to share reminders about nearby excursions or events happening during their stay. Email upcoming reservation holders about add-ons they can purchase in advance from your camp store, or a discount code to apply if they extend their stay by an additional night.
To keep your campground top of mind after guests leave, segment your emails to reach recent visitors or loyal families with special offers and information on park upgrades to keep them coming back for more. Importantly, you no longer have to juggle between two different tools for offline email list management. This integration automates the importation of your Campspot customer data into Mailchimp, so your email list is always up to date without you lifting a finger.
2. Featured Events, Promotions, and Add-Ons
Some campgrounds are located near large attractions, such as amusement parks or national monuments. Other operators host the fun right onsite with year-round events that keep campers’ attention for years to come. If you fall into the latter group, and even if you only host one event a year, you have the opportunity to advertise that special outing through Campspot’s reservation workflow.
Campspot users can easily configure events to appear on the homepage of their booking page. Check out this example from Anvil Campground:
This offers a great opportunity to create an event to take place over traditionally slow dates and to highlight that event to drum up bookings. Given Campspot’s user-friendly interface and strategic event advertisement placement, your guest is just a short scroll up the page and a click away from making their booking a reality. Alternatively, consider advertising recurring popular events over holiday weekends earlier through Campspot to drive more advanced bookings.
Similarly, package discounts and other promotions are displayed beneath any park events on your customized booking homepage. Campers who may have been hesitant to book before will appreciate the visibility of the discounts and ease of utilizing them right then and there.
After selecting their site to book online, the customer is then prompted during the Campspot checkout process to explore other ancillary purchases. These can include timed rentals, such as a 24-hour golf cart or hammock, and add-ons with quantity—firewood, ice bags, s’mores kits, and more. By displaying these items conveniently within the checkout workflow, the camper appreciates the convenience of securing these items ahead of time and the operator benefits from added ancillary revenue.
3. Two-Way Texting Capability
In a world where 85% of smartphone users favor receiving text messages over emails or calls, leveraging text messaging is a must-try strategy to reach your campers. Better yet, Campspot allows you to communicate back and forth directly with your customers using the SimpleTexting integration. Two-way communication opens a world of opportunity for campground operators and their guests.
Choose between messaging individual guests or a group of guests based on custom criteria you set. For example, you could send a specific cabin access code or advertise a special promotion to all groupsite guests. If they encounter an issue upon arrival, guests can write back to you without holding up the front office or phone lines. Best of all, compliance factors such as opting in/out are all conveniently automated through Campspot’s booking workflow.
4. OTA Integrations and Exposure
Increasingly popular in today’s digital ecosystem, online travel agencies (OTAs) are internet-hosted marketplaces where customers can seek out and purchase travel-related services. Familiar leaders include Travelocity, Cars.com, and many others. The benefits of listing one’s campground on an OTA include amplified brand visibility and direct access to worldwide customers searching on their mobile devices for their next vacation destination.
Beyond the benefits of being listed on our own camping-specific OTA, Campspot Marketplace, campground operators can also choose from three highly-trafficked, traditional travel marketplaces to list their lodging inventory: Booking.com, Airbnb, and Vrbo. While there is usually a commission on reservations that come through an OTA, there is no cost to acquire the reservations. This differs from traditional pay-per-click or pay-per-lead marketing channels, which can have high costs of entry and acquisition.
Brand recognition through OTAs can be enough to drive direct bookings in the future. Campspot has found that 30% of customers who discover a campground on Campspot.com leave the site and then book directly with the campground, bypassing the commission fee altogether. Using Campspot as the central hub, these three integrations help operators avoid the time and effort required to understand each individual marketplace and manage their inventory in silos.
All successful marketing strategies should take a creative, tested, and diversified approach. We hope the ideas above accomplish just that: inspire you to get creative, encourage you to test different integrations, and offer a diverse set of marketing options to grow your business all under one trusted and seamless software provider—Campspot!
Haley Dalian is a lifelong Michigander who takes advantage of recreation throughout the state’s changing seasons—from snow skiing to scuba diving in the Great Lakes. A former Campspot marketing manager, Haley holds a B.A. degree in public policy from Michigan State University and an M.S. degree in sustainability from the University of Michigan. She is passionate about environmental stewardship, exploring the outdoors, and has never met a potato she didn’t like.