A radical transformation to Travelodge promotions
Maryke Lotz, Manager for Partnerships and Affiliates at Travelodge
In the competitive hospitality market, discount voucher codes offer an important way for hotels to attract and engage with prospective customers. Travelodge is an extensive user of voucher codes, but had been losing money as a result of online code misuse.
Through working with voucher code experts Uniqodo, Travelodge has been able to:
- offer unique codes tailored to meet specific customer needs
- reduce code misuse and associated revenue impacts
- increase the number of customers on marketing email lists
- reduce the time spent on manual reporting by up to 15 hours per week
- access current, detailed analytics around customer booking behaviour
Travelodge became Britain’s first value hotel brand when it launched in the UK in 1985. It is now the UK’s largest independent hotel brand, with more than 6000 employees, and 500 hotels across the UK as well as in Ireland and Spain.
Challenge: Code misuse and lost revenue
Travelodge is a long term user of discount voucher codes in the competitive hotel accommodation market. Travelodge discount codes were available for customers and potential new guests in multiple online locations, including several online voucher code provider affiliates, along with the Travelodge website, multiple social media platforms, and through Travelodge’s email marketing.
However, it was too easy for other affiliates, social media sites and consumers to directly access discount codes online. The codes were being abused and forwarded on without limits, and Travelodge was paying commission, as well as losing revenue from discounts.
Travelodge weren’t able to track results for specific voucher campaigns because the data wasn’t linked between website landing pages or customer reservations.
Solution: Unique discount codes with real-time monitoring
Travelodge Manager for Partnerships and Affiliates, Maryke Lotz, was introduced to Uniqodo to explore options for introducing unique discount codes for selective promotions and monitoring the results.
“It was fairly simple to implement the system, and Chris and David from Uniqodo were brilliant at coming on board and suggested custom changes, to make it work for us.”
In September 2016 the Uniqodo system went live to enable Travelodge to track every code and work with their partners to create exclusive offers.
The process to request batches of codes for campaigns is smooth – and Maryke says that Uniqodo respond proactively everytime she has a query or new requirement.
The Travelodge team receives daily reporting updates, showing how each promotion is performing all the way through to bookings. The data is more sophisticated than Google Analytics, showing exactly what website content is viewed, the purchase path and the customer types who have redeemed the offer.
Uniqodo has also improved the user experience. If the customer is not eligible to use the code for their stay with Travelodge, the system serves friendly custom error messages with an explanation of why they can’t use it, or a prompt to change dates or add breakfast to qualify for the offer.
RESULTS: INCREASED CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT AND BETTER AFFILIATE RELATIONSHIPS
With the Uniqodo system in place, Travelodge can do a lot more with their campaigns and review the performance, with the ability to tweak the offer or test changes instantly.
Travelodge share offers with varying combinations of benefits for their customers, based on their needs. Travellers using airports can access geo-location discounts, business guests can extend their stay, Travelodge’s email subscribers receive unique offers, and regular customers receive a loyalty discount. Their social media followers see discounts for specific hotels or date ranges.
Maryke now receives a daily summary email, with a snapshot of all the live promotions, which automates a lot of the processes previously used. It has enhanced capability, providing data on the kind of people the codes are attracting, tracking the reservations, average spend, extras and number of nights.
She is better informed than before about who’s using the codes and estimates that it saves her 2-3 hours per day on analysis and reporting. And if a code is not performing well, Maryke can review whether to change the dates or the message accordingly. As a result, Travelodge has seen an increase in the number of customers signing up for email alerts, boosting their customer acquisition.
In addition, Travelodge is building stronger relationships with their main affiliates, myvouchercodes.co.uk and vouchercodes.co.uk and Voucher Cloud because Travelodge can create truly exclusive offers and provide feedback on the results. The affiliates feel more valuable and can offer something special for their users.