Promotion & Marketing Starting a Bed & Breakfast

Get to know your guest when starting a B&B

Bed & breakfast guest

Make sure you have a global image of your guests in advance.

If you want to start a bed & breakfast then it’s important to get a clear image of your target group in advance. Ask yourself the question: who are the guests I am going to welcome in my B&B? It makes a world of difference if you focus on business people or families with children. The more concrete you can describe your target group, the more aimed you can adjust your promotion and offer to that.

Families or 50+?
You may prefer a certain target group, such as families, earning couples without children or people older than 50. In that case, you can specifically focus your promotion on this target group. Also with a certain value for money you can attract certain target groups more than others.

Characteristics B&B visitor
Maybe you don’t have a preference and just want to attract a public that is as broad as possible. The group of B&B visitors is as diverse as the bed & breakfast itself. Still, many visitors share a number of characterisations you can adapt to. Today’s B&B visitor:

  •  Is in need of hospitality (attention, personal approach and involvement) and responsibility (authenticity and genuineness);
  • Does not find the location of the B&B the most important, but does attach value to the experience, peace and quiet and personal attention in a domestic atmosphere;
  • Is ever more in need of privacy
  • In general is a conscious consumer with a large interest in nature and culture;
  • Puts ‘escaping the crowds and every-day stress’ first;
  • Is especially sensitive for the rural and cultural historical qualities of the region;
  • Is often an environmentally aware consumer;
  • Is a demanding consumer that expects at least as much comfort as at home.

Tips for your bed & breakfast
With these characteristics in the back of your mind you can try to meet the wishes of your guests as good as possible. Provide a unique experience: design your B&B in an original way or tell a story about the history of the property. Incorporate lots of privacy, for example by providing separate sanitary provisions. With water- and energy saving measures there is no doubt you will make good cheer.

Finally, an important tip: involve the surroundings in your bed & breakfast. Place local hiking- and cycling routes, recommend a nice restaurant and serve local products at breakfast. It is these surprising gestures that your guests will remember most!

Free information about starting a B&B periodically publishes a free news letter with information about running a B&B, that is interesting for start-ups too. You can sign up for the news letter on our B&B start-up page. Also keep visiting this blog for more tips from practice and join the bed & breakfast discussion group on LinkedIn!

About the author

Janneke Scheepers

Janneke Scheepers is web editor at Bed & Breakfast Europe. She writes blogs, articles and newsletters about all aspects of the B&B sector in Europe.

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