Owning a piece of the American dream was always a longtime dream of French natives, David & Helene. And sharing their piece of America with others was also a part of that dream. So when the opportunity came up years ago to own a getaway vacation spot in the Great Smokies of Tennessee, they just couldn’t say no. They invested in a plot of land big enough for eight large cabins – all unique in their own way –nestled in the hills of the Smokies. Smoky Mountain Getaway was born. Fast forward to today, Smokey Mountain Getaway earns a fair amount of bookings each year, occasionally ranking on Google’s top 100 mountain stay and vacation listings. It launches a monthly email promoting the cabins, local events, organizations and happenings in and around the local cities of Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, Sevierville, and more. It’s also launched a weekly search campaign across the U.S. with keywords and programmatic displays to appeal to its top searched audiences including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta and St. Louis.
Yet despite its prime location near Nashville & Knoxville, Tennessee, its family-run business model and its warm hospitality, Smoky Mountain Getaway has its fair share of challenges for being a small business in a very saturated market. It’s saturated with hundreds of others just like it. Not to mention, most of Smoky Mountain Getaway’s bookings aren’t even done through its own website but Airbnb and VRBO, which takes a % of the earnings.
Lately, bookings have decreased, audiences have checked out the listings but not booked and last-minute cancellations have become frequent, leaving David & Helene in a bind to rebook without losing $$. So how do they navigate this industry full of monster booking engines and big name brand travel companies (*cough airbnb cough*) to carve out a brand name for itself in the vacay market? How do they rise above the clutter and increase SMG’s digital footprint to drive traffic to its own website?
Help rebrand the logo, redesign the website, and increase digital positioning for this hospitality brand.