Motorcycle Tourism Checklist for Lodging

30 Sep

 

It’s a head count; bed count, and if your hotel, motel, inn, or resort isn’t booking at close to 100% capacity you probably are spending money on advertising to attract more clients.   Advertizing is a primary component of any marketing plan, but misdirected advertising is not only a waste of resources, it is also counterproductive.

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My specialty is developing motorcycle and food tourism, but the approach I’ve developed can be applied to any special interest niche—scuba diving, mountain biking, or any other.  Before developing any marketing plan, I advise clients to take an inventory of assets and to match them against potential markets.

If you want to attract motorcyclists the first thing to recognize is how quickly information—positive or negative—spreads through niche markets.  Do it right and within three to five years your property will be “on the map.”

1)  Parking is a major consideration.   Paved, level, motorcycle-only spaces that are secure are a basic requirement.  Secure can mean that the parked bikes are visible from the front desk, there are security cameras covering the area, or they can be seen from the room(s) being rented.  Secure also means a position that reduces the risk of being hit by drivers attempting to back their vehicles out of parking spaces.  Covered parking spaces ‑whether in a garage, lean-to, or portico—are especially appreciated.   Washing stations—even those as simple as an outside faucet, a bucket, and some old rags—gain points.  Kickstand plates—square plywood measuring approximately 6×6—are another important item (and helps to preserve the condition of your parking area, too).

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2)  Having food and drink accessible is another prime consideration.  If you have a restaurant/bar on site it will be frequented.  If there are restaurants/bars within a short walking distance have copies of their menus on hand and be ready to call and make reservations for your guests.  If you can make special arrangements with these restaurant owners—a discount, free desert, or some incentive—for your clients then everyone wins.  If these restaurants are not within walking distance, have a cab service or bus shuttle service available.  After a long day in the saddle motorcyclists—especially couples–usually don’t want to “suit up” and ride to a restaurant after unloading all their gear

3)  Have a basic tool kit (metric and SAE) on hand.  A tire inflator and a battery charger are inexpensive items that will impress your motorcycle guests.  Believe me, sooner or later they will be needed.

4)  Directions and relevant phone numbers.   A list of local motorcycle dealers, auto parts stores, and haulers who can safely pick up a stranded motorcycle should be on hand.   Also, directions to various attractions and popular motorcycle day trips (which, by the way, encourages multiple-day occupancies) should be available.

There’s much more than can be done, but these four important points are inexpensive to implement and will have a significant market impact.  There are nuances, of course:  motorcycle-only parking should be located where an early departure by a group of riders with loud pipes won’t disturb other guests.  You also can reach out to local members of organizations such as H.O.G. (Harley Owners Group), GWRA (Gold Wing Riders of America), BMWMOA (BMW Motorcycle Owners of America) for emergency assistance and support.  Discounts can be established for motorcyclists or groups making advanced reservations.  The important thing is that you care enough to make an effort to meet the specialty needs of your clients.  It will be noticed and it will be talked about.  In the end, word-of-mouth is still the best advertising.

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One Response to “Motorcycle Tourism Checklist for Lodging”

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  1. Motorcycle Tourism Checklist for Lodging | Touringroads Travel & Adventure - September 30, 2013

    […] ← Motorcycle Tourism Checklist for Lodging […]

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