I recently had to go to Ocala, FL for a photo shoot. I work in print and radio marketing, and a client needed me to photograph their horse farm since it would be going on the market soon. On a recommendation from a friend, I stayed at this tucked away hotel right off 200 (the busiest and most commercial stretch of road in Ocala).
The hotel could have used a revamp which is why I’m not giving it a plug. A lot of my friends go off my recommendations, and I usually stick to 4 star hotels and higher, so they’re used to me raving about awesome hotels. I chose this hotel since it was close to the shoot. Now I’m not deriding this hotel, it’s just not up to my usual standards. If they revamped it, this hotel would be incredible. Check in was quick and efficient and during my whole stay the staff was very accommodating. As I walked along the empty corridors I knew my “snobbiness” with the condition of the hotel does not match 99% of the rest of the population, so I know the condition of the hotel had nothing to do why it had so many vacancies.
Being in marketing, I’ve seen a trend shifting, mostly with the Millennial generation where everything is going online. This hotel was off the beaten path. Talking to one of the managers I asked what type of advertising they had. He told me they’re in the yellow pages and they do a travel brochure that is spread out among area restaurants and shopping plazas. I asked about their Ocala small business online marketing. His answer was they have a website. I explained to him that wasn’t enough. Now I could have pitched him my services of doing some radio spots and print advertising, but I knew that was not really what they needed. People today will go online and see who is on page one of Google, and then they check out reviews of hotels. My agency works hand in hand with a SEO company that we trust and have a lot of respect for. I made sure to leave their phone number with the front desk manager. It makes me sad to see a business that could flourish so well flounder, all because they don’t know how to market their business in today’s market.
If you’re wondering what Ocala SEO I recommended you can find them here:
Whether you’re in Ocala, FL or not, don’t make the mistake and let your business fail because you don’t think online marketing is important, or that you get enough foot traffic. Within a few short years if you’re not doing search engine optimization, I predict you will be out of business.