13 Most Abused Terms When Marketing a Hotel

Share this post.


It’s already so difficult to stand out from the competition in the Hotel Industry, that no single hotelier on Earth would think of 

So, do we (hoteliers) spend so much time in the attempt to be like all other hotels?

Hotels are commodities.

First, because the competition is certainly high across most countries and regions, making in it difficult for the final customers to really tell what makes a hotel different from all others.

Second, because of how hotels are marketed and distributed in the world: think of the OTAs, who are the masters at flattening any value proposition by leveraging the only factor that matters to them: price, better rates, greeter discounts.

But it’s not just that: to make things even worse, there’s another important reason why so many hotels and hotel managers struggle so much at standing out: they communicate the exact same things, deliver the exact same messages, and use the exact same words and expressions.

And so, when it comes to picking the hotel to stay at, facing an array of hotels to choose from, each of which using the same wording and message, what other factor can travelers use to decide, if not price and little else?

In today’s video I’m going to show you 13 of some of the most abused words by hotel marketers, words that make any marketing effort ineffective, to say the least, or totally useless, and that will turn any hotel into a commodity par excellence.

This and more coming up, so let’s dig in.

Why These Terms

The words and the terms that I am about to show you can be found on many hotel websites or hotel adverts.

When used on a hotel website, they’ll simply become irrelevant, because they don’t communicate anything.

When used in advertising, these terms trigger what is called “ad blindness”, a phenomenon that makes hotel ads essentially invisible, in the eyes of potential customers.

And I’m 100% sure most if not all of them will sound familiar to you.

Let’s start with the first term:

Welcome to [Hotel Name]

So so so many hotel websites open up in front of travelers with this message. Welcome to [Hotel Name].


For years we’ve heard the importance of the 1st impact, during the very first few seconds, between 3 and 5, to make an impression… what kind of impression can we make by saying “Welcome to [Hotel Name]?”

I’ve come to the conclusion that those who have this opening statement in the home page are those who either: don’t know what to write instead (and so they end up writing Welcome to Hotel Name because it’s the most aseptic statement they can come up with) or they have seen it some many other times, in so many other hotel websites that they must have thought to do the same, just to conform to the mass.

Welcome to Hotel Name is a nice thing to say upon check in: when trying to get a booking and generate revenue, that’s the most useless and irrelevant thing to say. 


I think half hotel adverts include a sentence that starts with “Enjoy”.

Enjoy this, enjoy that.


Enjoy is also a very easy term to use because it can be followed by anything and you can append whichever service or benefit that you want to offer.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a negative word, this is not a video about terms that you shouldn’t be using because they are bad; you shouldn’t be using them because everyone else is.


Sometimes used interchangeably with Enjoy. Same as the previous term, it’s easy to use and can be followed by anything.

This is a term that I particularly dislike because it goes hands in hand with another extremely abused term in the Hotel Industry:


You see, “Experience” is something that entices something unique, something that travelers will get only by staying in that particular hotel.


But “Discover” and “Experience” are so overly used by so many hotels, that whatever message includes these terms will automatically undermine any real value.


Same as all others. Explore is mostly paired with the name of the destination, or other words like Adventure.



And here is where I’ll probably end up getting some enemies because, here’s the thing. In full honesty, I lost count of the hotels that are considered and “sold” as luxury when they are just NOT luxury.


Hotels that are certainly comfortable, very nice indeed… but not luxury.

And so you might be asking: what is luxury?

In fact, there’s no objective line that defines what is luxury and what not

But ok, even though you consider yours a luxury hotel, make sure to showcase something that is luxury as objectively as you can. Because when looking at an ad like the one that follows, I don’t see a single pixel of this photo that says “luxury”, yet this hotel is claiming so.


Typical case of an ego-driven ad, wannabe “luxury” hotel.


Exclusive is potentially a very good term, because it’s the opposite of commodity.


And so, you might think that hoteliers should be using this word more often. However the issue, rather than in the term itself, it’s in what comes next.

Take this: “Exclusive benefits”. Cool, benefits. So what are these benefits? Because if these benefits are, say, 10% off the best available rate, or flexible cancellations, or late check out… I mean, seriously, are such benefits really “exclusive”?

These are benefits that 80% of the hotels of the world offer, in different shapes and forms maybe.


It’s as a leisure hotel MUST communicate to the potential customers that they are going to have Relax.


It’s a good reason for sure, but again, if everyone uses it, what’s the deal?

Style/Stylish, or Design

Just like “Luxury”, a hotel with style or a stylish hotel… turns out to be just a normal hotel with some design element… and so, in the eye (and dreams) of the hotel manager or hotel owner, that design element make the hotel a Design hotel, a Stylish hotel, like automatically.

But in the eyes of the customers?


But even if… let’s take a real design hotel, or stylish hotel… do customers really care about the design or stylish factor? Is this a factor that may pend people decide to stay in a design hotel, as opposed to any other hotel?

If so, then Design hotels should have no reason to lower their rates, as people would go there anyway, happily paying more for the style.


More and more hotels all over the world are putting the word “boutique” into their names. Have you ever wondered what that actually means?

It is just a phenomenon, a movement, more than a hotel category.


But then again the only point that matters: do customers really care?

If you have a boutique hotel and now wondering if people really seek boutique hotels when they search for their travels, use a KW tool like the free one in Google Ads and check: how many searches are done with the specific term “boutique” next to hotel and destination?

I’m telling you, with some rare exceptions, the KW tool will return little to no searches at all.

Instead, you will find many more searches, on average, for other attributes and terms, like Family Hotels. And so, why are there so many more boutique hotels than family hotels?


This term is soooo inflated. It seems like every single hotel of the world, no matter the country, the religion, the culture, the category, the whatever… has to offer COMFORT!


It’s so obvious, so overworked, that it’s not worth talking about it any further, right?

Feel at home

However, there is one word, or a saying that is even more abused than comfortable. And the winner is: “feeling at home”.

I just cannot stand this term anymore. But ok, besides the personal feeling, my point is: are we really so sure that travelers seek home feeling when travelling?


Seriously, do people want to “feel at home” when staying at a hotel?

I asked myself that question: do I want to feel at home when travelling? And my honest answer was: no, because travelling is an adventure, whilst home is routine, the exact opposite of adventure.

But ok, maybe I’m a weirdo, so I asked other people, family, friends, travellers I meet on my way when I travel. And the best answer I got was: if I want to feel at home, I stay home.

Now, i get the point, this “feeling at home” in the mind of the hoteliers who use these wordings relates more to feeling comfortable, feeling at ease. But, if so, that’s a different thing from “feeling at home”


Escape is a good word, it entices adventure.

But we just come from “feeling at home”.

And now: Escape.

These 2 terms that communicate the exact opposite meaning: routine vs adventure, secure and safe vs breaking free.


Words have the power to make people dream and visualize what they will be getting, by letting them feel the sensations and the emotions of that dream.

If the words that we use are contradictory, there won’t be any dreaming in the minds of those potential customers that we are trying to persuade. And where there is no dreaming.. there are no bookings.


Needless to say that there are way more boring terms.

And if you are a hotel manager or hotel owner, now you might be wondering, “ok, but if we better avoid these terms, what should we be using instead?”

This is what I will be talking about next, so stay tuned, subscribe to the channel and get notified as soon as the new video will be released.

Share this post:

Leave a Reply

Follow Me On Social Media

Liked This Article?

Subscribe and get FREE access to all Premium posts.

Follow Alessandro on Linkedin

Digital Strategy & E-commerce Expert for Independent Hotels.

Need Help Getting More Revenue & Reducing Costs for Your Hotel?​

Let’s talk about it and see IF and HOW we can help.

Need Help Getting More Revenue & Reducing Costs for Your Hotel?

Let’s talk about it and see IF and HOW we can help.

Need Help Getting More Revenue & Reducing Costs for Your Hotel?​

Let’s talk about it and see IF and HOW we can help.

Need Help Getting More Revenue & Reducing Costs for Your Hotel?

Let’s talk about it and see IF and HOW we can help.


Blue Ocean Strategy Canvas

Download Your Blue Ocean Strategy Canvas for Free!


Surviving... then Thriving and Succeeding the Hotel Online Game Like These Hoteliers Did... in 3 Steps.


Access Your Free Copy Now! Enter your Name and Email address below

How to make the competition irrelevant - Blue Ocean Strategy for Hotels