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Tariff Setting – some strategies to assist!

Here are a couple of strategies from us to assist with revenue maximisation. Without doubt, price is one of the biggest factors guests consider when shopping for a site or cabin. Trying to set your tariffs to remain attractive and still profitable can be a challenge. For too long, caravan parks have set their tariffs months in advance and published these for the guest to insist that they are honoured. From this – problems eventuated; “Price your cabins and sites too low and you’re missing out on revenue, price your cabins and sites too high and your potential guests might walk to a competitor”.  So what can be done to maximise your daily revenue and at the same time minimise your operational costs. Firstly, stop publishing tariffs – this way you can remain flexible with your tariffs so that you can adjust them quickly when and if they need to be varied. Then try the following strategies: Anchor your tariff? The technique of Tariff Anchoring plays on people’s tendencies to rely heavily on the first price offered when making a decision. When a potential guest asks for your rates, start with the higher rooms first. It is not uncommon to raise tariffs as your property inches closer to being fully booked. On a busy weekend night, those last few cabins or sites should be worth more and anyone who has worked the front desk/ reservations at those times would have had some persons scoff at the rates and decide not to book. This will always be a challenge so try this exercise in Tariff Anchoring. Example: “Our Deluxe sites are $65 for the night, but our Standard sites are only $52.” This selling technique may help build value in the Standard site’s price by highlighting the cheaper price. Using “Useless …Read More

Recruitment 101 – How to get it Right the First Time

Having good employees is vital for your business! The right staff will help your business grow however on the flipside, the wrong choice can cause anguish and will be expensive! Choosing a new employee can be challenging so here are few tips to prepare you for the journey through the minefield of employing new team members. Take the time to develop relationships Time pressures are nothing new, especially in a caravan park/holiday resort, but a shock resignation from a staff member can leave employers and employees scratching their heads. Recruitment is not easy – so take time to develop relationships with potential candidates before you need them. Build your talent pool early so you have some good “potentials” in the pipeline before vacancies exist – whether it be friends, industry colleagues or competitors. Tell everyone that you have a job vacancy Chances are your employees are connected to hundreds of potential candidates via social media – and that they might even know someone who is ideally suited to the job. Industry experience is usually well regarded so spread the word in the hope you can find a winner. Encourage your staff to reach out to their networks, let your industry colleagues know you are on the hunt, and spread the word to as many contacts as possible. Same as your guests – post the job online and ask your guests to share with any of their friends who might be suitable for the role and looking for work. Know What You’re Looking For Rather than taking a risk, develop a clear picture of who you want to fill the job. Building a complete job description is a good starting point, but it is also essential to know the behavioural traits and qualities you want as part of your team. List …Read More

Social Media Marketing 101

DO and DON’T POINTERS for Caravan Park Operators There are so many social media sites to choose from these days! And it has become easier as well as more cost-effective for holiday parks to reach out to their customers via these channels. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter allow parks to connect with past, present and potential guests – whether they be local or international – via interactions, special offers and feedback. The trick to social media is to use it correctly, so take some time and learn the art of balancing social media posts – between posting infrequently or the reverse by posting several times a day and bombarding your guest feeds with posts. Here are some of our recommendations for the do’s and don’ts of social media marketing: Do’s • Make your first impression count Your profile page is the first impression that a guest has of your caravan park. The impact of your profile has to be powerful and to the point. The initial description should be precise yet innovative. • Paint an inviting picture Remember “A picture is worth a thousand words”, therefore, use great looking and inviting photos – consider the local attractions as well to encourage your guests to stay with you. • Target peer groups Social media marketing attracts and includes business of similar natures. Your presence in complementary pages can entice a lot of people to follow your page. Engage and participate in groups that are corresponding to your park’s profile like travel groups, local attractions and hospitality groups and build your network with them through posts, comments or shares. • Engage and get creative Use social media marketing as a platform to engage and interact with your guests. You can promote your special offers and discounts to entice …Read More

Pre Start Meetings – Why You Should

Pre-starts are an essential tool developed to help workers get focused and give all employees a chance to find out what is going on in the workplace. They are particularly useful for keeping track of the rapidly changing nature of work within a caravan park/resort. This allows workers and supervisors to: • Identify clashing timetables for scheduled work or training • Monitor and communicate potential site hazards and safety issues • Track the progress of work to be completed • Seek information about future in-house employment opportunities What exactly is a Pre-Start Meeting? Virtually all workplace jobs will require you to take part in a pre-start meeting at the start of every shift. Typically your pre-start meeting will be conducted at an agreed meeting place within your workplace. This could be outside a particular lunchroom or in your particular department’s office or meeting area. It could also be in a work area. It will probably change from time-to-time as the job evolves, especially during different seasons. The meeting should include all members of your department. The meeting will usually be led by your supervisor at the time. Pre-Start Meeting – Why is it important? Companies want to ensure their workers are kept up to date with the latest and most relevant safety, productivity and training information. The pre-start meeting plays an essential role in this. It acts not only as a forum for the planning of daily activities, but also as an avenue to provide workers with important industry and workplace information. This includes but is not limited to information about: Site Safety Issues Health and Safety are a major focus across all sectors of the hospitality industry. It is no surprise much of the morning pre-start discussion focuses on safety issues. This generally includes a reading of all reported …Read More

Be Safe, Not Sorry – Toolbox Meetings

While we already have many more in depth articles on the topic of Toolbox Meetings and Safety in the workplace, we thought this article was easy to read, understand and implement into caravan park daily working life. A Toolbox Talk is an informal group discussion that focuses on a particular safety issue. These meetings should be used daily to promote your department’s safety culture.  Toolbox talks are also intended to facilitate health and safety discussions in the work place. When? Ideally, you want to have a short toolbox safety meeting first thing in the morning. As many workplaces have staff working at different times, choose a time when the majority of your staff are rostered on to work. It can be any day and any time just as long as it’s a day where as many staff can attend as possible. Notes should be taken at the meeting and then made available to all and then those who were absent can be asked to read the notes and follow up with questions. Where? You need room for everyone to sit/stand comfortably and relax with as few distractions as possible, and where you can be easily seen and heard. If the topic is Power Tool safety, try holding the meeting close to the area where staff would use the power tools. Or perhaps the Tool Box meeting might be regarding the correct use of a washing machine, then hold the meeting in the laundry. How Long? LIMIT the safety meeting to five or ten minutes. If the discussion needs to be extended, it can be continued at the next meeting. What to Say? Say is the key word. Don’t grab a printed topic and read it. They’re meant to just be a guide not a cue card. Pick a topic relevant …Read More

Managing Your Caravan Park Online Reviews

Are you managing your online reviews or are they managing you? Sharing information on line is a fact of life. So come to terms with it. More and more of our guests are using their tablets or phones to tell the world exactly how they feel WHEN it is happening. There is no purpose trying to fight a force that is growing in strength every day. Rather learn about these reviews sites and social media avenues and then use them to your advantage. Don’t wait for someone else to take the lead – this is your business! Do you want your business to be successful and most importantly, profitable ?   Then get going and learn about this tsunami of online review channels or find someone that will do it for you. Turn bad comments in to sales advantages; take what is being said about your product squarely and honestly. Do not waste your energy defending actions and words rather use your energy turning a disgruntled guest into a happy one and happy ones into even stronger sales ambassadors than what they may be already. We doubt that you will ever be able to keep up with every review site that is available, so focus on learning which ones are being used most effectively/frequently and actively participate with your responses and sales opportunities. Positive reviews are great but so are the negative ones because if you are astute, then take the criticism and fix the problem. Make it your quest that a similar review will never be posted on a review site again. Monitoring Reviews is Crucial Online reviews are here to stay, and managing your online reputation should be a fundamental part of your caravan park’s daily operations. The first step to a successful online reputation is being able to …Read More

How to Reverse Your Caravan

(and avoid divorce before your holiday starts) It’s that time of year again when many families are packing up their caravan and embarking on their annual family holiday to their favourite caravan park.  So we thought timely to share some tips on the best practices when reversing your caravan onto site. (This article has been adapted from Alko’s Without a Hitch – https://withoutahitch.com.au/)  Reversing your Caravan  Perhaps the most stressful part of towing a caravan is reversing, especially into a small site at a caravan park with plenty of onlookers. But whether you’re new to caravans or just haven’t been out on the road for a while, the tips below will soon have you mastering this art to the applause of your fellow holidaymakers. Firstly, good tow mirrors – which are compulsory in most states – are going to be very helpful, especially if your caravan is wider than your car. Pay attention to the rear corners of the caravan – these are now leading the way and will turn in the opposite angle to your car due to the pivoting action of the coupling. As you turn your wheel to the right, the rear of the caravan will start to advance to the left, and vice versa. A good way to reduce the confusion is to keep one hand on the six o’clock position at the bottom of the steering wheel. Now, whatever direction you move that hand, the caravan will follow. To move the caravan to the right, simply move your bottom steering hand in that direction. Once you have direction under control, the secret to reversing a caravan is to go slowly and make only slight adjustments to your steering. Reversing into a Caravan Site  Although you’ll occasionally find that a site at a caravan park allows …Read More

Digital Strategy Tips for your Caravan Park

Gone are the days of running an ad in the local paper. If you aren’t online, your caravan park is seriously missing out! And by online we don’t just mean having a website. As the digital world continues to make an impact on how we communicate, caravan park operators need to change their ways and marketing tactics and implement digital marketing into their planning. Having a poor digital marketing strategy can mean you’re missing out on potential customers online – so if you don’t yet have one – get onto it asap! Here are a few tips to get started: Social Media  Social media marketing has become the origin of all digital technology. For many of us, it’s where the majority of our audiences spend most of their time. Social media provides instant updates, potential leads through advertising and has become a meaningful way of communicating with customers online. Ensure you make regular and relevant content updates/posts. However, don’t be fooled by opening up a number of social accounts just to be online. Discover what platforms work for you and your business and do it properly. Here are some of our recommendations: Google Maps Google + Facebook Twitter Instagram Facebook Ads (to allow for targeted campaigns) Social media can help also boost your search engine optimisation (SEO), for example, the more social media shares you receive, the higher your search ranking will be. Content is key  Traditional marketing habits are becoming less and less effective in reaching your consumers. People are switching off from ways of the past and are looking for quicker ways to access the information they need, going straight online (generally from their mobile phones). Content marketing is now an important role in SEO. After the latest Google algorithm changes, your website needs to include high quality …Read More

4 simple ways to personalise your caravan park’s customer service

Investing in new trendy devices, revamping your furniture from top to bottom, or hiring more staff members are not the ways to improve your guests experience or your “bottom line”. The real key to giving your customers a pleasant stay is in making them feel at ease, which you can easily do by personalising your customer service. Here are just a few suggestions: Upgrade your guests Guests usually arrive at your caravan park after a few hours/long day of driving – they may be tired, frustrated from traffic or at their wits end with the kids misbehaving – so why not give them a free upgrade? The cost of upgrading someone is minimal – just a little admin work and you’ve got happy (and returning) customers as well as positive word of mouth recommendations. It’s a great way of marketing your business and ensuring you get some fantastic reviews on places like TripAdvisor, Google Review etc. Write (handwritten) welcome notes In a world where everything is becoming more digital and impersonal, writing your guests a handwritten welcome note gives that warm and personal touch that people appreciate. It doesn’t have to be an essay or anything witty – just as long as it’s tailored to the individual guests that are staying in that room/site. For example, note whether your guests are staying for an anniversary or other celebration. If you notice that it’s someone’s birthday, leave a little something extra behind in the room as a surprise. Greet guests in person Taking the welcome to the next level, be on hand in reception when your guests are arriving to welcome them in person.  Guests love that warm, sincere and personal touch – have a brief chat, and also let them know if there is any issues during their stay, to come and contact you …Read More

Online Reputation Management – Facebook Reviews

Facebook Reviews: Why They Are Important and How to Respond Do your guests review your property on Facebook? I know ours do! And if you have a Facebook Business Page – you will most likely find that reviews are activated on your page. Facebook’s Star Ratings encourage users to share their positive and negative experience with others about your business by leaving a short review and a rating out of 5. And if you choose to display them on your Facebook business page, these ratings will appear as an average score on your property’s profile page, increasing your integrity and trustworthiness to your audience. Listed below is “How Facebook Star Reviews Work” & How To Manage” to ensure you put your best foot forward on the biggest social network in the world. WHY FACEBOOK REVIEWS ARE IMPORTANT? Star ratings are one of a number of factors that play a part in making up a business’s Facebook EdgeRank – Facebook’s algorithm for determining where your posts will be displayed in the news feed (and if they feature there at all). As well as the increased reach that comes with influencing EdgeRank, star ratings also help add a influential ‘word of mouth’ proof to your property’s social media presence. SETTING UP REVIEW NOTIFICATIONS If you decide to manage star reviews as part of your Facebook campaign, it’s important to respond promptly to both positive and negative reviews (you can learn something from all of them). To do this, set up notifications within the page settings so an alert is received each time a new rating is posted. 1. Go to Settings in your admin dashboard. 2. Select “Get a notification each time there is activity on your Page or an important Page update.” 3. Check that all notifications are switched ON under …Read More