Peter Friend, joint owner of the award winning B&B La Villa Mazamet in the Tarn shares his top tips. The villa has been named France’s top luxurious B&B for several years and, says Peter, there are lots of things you can do to make your own B&B have a better chance of success…
Location and accessibility to good transport links cannot be under estimated.
Get involved with your community, local trades people, tourist office, etc. from a very early stage. This will encourage engagement and support for your business. Part of our ethos has always been to make sure we support the community in which we are based. For every 1€ we spend on running the business, 85 cents are spent in the town of Mazamet. And don’t be afraid to shout about that too, especially to your local Mayor!
Listen to your guests and ask for feedback on their stay, your amenities and facilities. Plough some of your profits back in each year to make sure you not only keep on top with the décor and maintenance of your property but also add to the guest experience – return guests will always notice the smallest of detail and love it when you have taken their feedback on board.
Internet marketing and website
Get your website and marketing plan in place at least a year prior to opening your doors. Engage with guests via social media and E-newsletters to help develop return visits.
See your website as THE main marketing tool and invest in professional photography – this is a potential guest’s first engagement with you and you need to get in right.
Work with other B&Bs locally and regionally – don’t just see them as competition as you can work with them during busy periods or when you might need them to take a loyal guest you can’t accommodate.