Center Parcs is not a small player. With 4 parks they are the absolute market leader for short vacations in the United Kingdom. By using email marketing they aren’t directly trying to sell more vacations, but to get more return for every stay.
Jeremy Colston, the CRM manager partnered up with an e-marketing agency to create a clever campaign for all Brits who booked a short stay. The goal was simple. Center Parcs doesn’t just offer Holiday cottages, but also a lot of extra sport, relax and culinary activities. The more extra activities can be sold, the larger the turnover per booked stay.
Winning time was an extra goal, both for the client as for the staff of the different locations. So they focused on getting guests to book as many of those extra activities online beforehand. In order to do that they needed to mix up their old strategy. The standard email messages, that were so general that they could be applied to every location, were split up for every location and their own promotions. That’s the benefit if you’re starting your email marketing from within your CRM environment.
More focused on their stay
Instead of starting from the date of reservation like before, they are now more focusing on the date of arrival. Center Parcs doesn’t offer the same program of activities every week. Now they use there emails to offer a relevant program, based on their actual stay. This was all one done by an automatic connection with the databases. Every day, and with every new reservation, new automated campaigns can be sent out.
Adapted to the park
Fifteen weeks before arrival, a welcome message is sent by the chosen park – automatically of course. That messages is pimped with content and data of the booked park. They offer you a map of the park. The rest of the message is filled with relevant content and with all the activities that are taking place during their stay. This first email will be followed by a set of automatically triggered emails.
Walking the line
The guests will get an extra message with the reference of the reservation, booked activities, and the possibility to change – read add – the reservation, the route towards the park, the number of days until their stay, a checklist with things they shouldn’t forget to bring along, and the offer to order a prefilled fridge with the supermarket of the park. And every time, they highlight all the extra activities.
They didn’t have to wait long for the results. All email campaigns got a lot higher open and click rates. And not just once, put permanently. Their personalization generated 20% higher conversion. The turnover per stay increased dramatically, and for all the activities that were booked, 80% was reserved online and before their stay. Which made sure that the employees at the reception desk could work more efficiently. And the guests could immediately go work out, instead of waiting in line.
Did you get surprising results from a change in strategy? Let us know in the reactions!