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Comprehensive Hospitality Marketing Experts

Your One-Stop Shop For Hospitality Marketing

At the core of hospitality marketing is being able to effectively capture and express your business’ customer experience. We know this because we’ve worked the entire spectrum of the hospitality businesses – food & beverage, accommodation, tourism and travel – you name it. From custom web development to SEO and SEM to branding to social media, we will work closely with you to develop marketing strategies that will creatively communicate your products, services and customer experience on all available digital channels while bringing your niche audience to you.

Data-Driven Marketing Consultants

Our Case Studies

Content Development In The Hospitality Sector

Did you know that 82 percent of consumers have made a purchase as a result of content marketing? That’s right, content marketing is the real deal and it’s only become more important in an increasingly content-obsessed culture. When executed correctly, a robust content marketing strategy will not only help move prospects through the sales funnel, but also drive organic traffic, build brand awareness and eventually, cultivate brand champions.

Of course, this won’t be accomplished with just any blog post or infographic. No, a digital content strategy that works for a hospitality business demands more than content for the sake of content. It requires genuinely valuable content that educates, entertains or inspires its intended audience.

Why Hospitality Marketing Is Essential?

While an effective digital marketing strategy has become essential for all business, it is perhaps the most important in the hospitality sector. Why? First and foremost, there is just so much potential for entertaining and engaging content for businesses in this sector, whether it be food & beverage, accommodation, tourism and travel. Come on, who doesn’t love to indulge in one of those glamorous travel ads that take you briefly away to a tropical paradise somewhere in the Caribbean. Or find their mouth-watering at a well done video promoting a delicious dish at one of your favorite restaurants.

Secondly, because this industry tends to focus on creating experiences and relationships with customers, marketing that inspires customer loyalty while also reaching out to new customers is so much more important in the success of your business in comparison to other less personal and intimate industries.

Hospitality Marketing
RM hospitality food vertical
RM hospitality virgil kane vertical

Hospitality Marketing in a Post-COVID World

It is no secret that COVID made an extreme impact on the hospitality sector. In fact, it may have affected it more than any other industry. For perspective, global revenue for travel and tourism is estimated to decrease by 34.7% to an estimated $447.4 billion in 2020, with the original forecast at $712 billion. Keeping up with the latest trends within hospitality marketing is vital, but it is equally important to understand the context of these trends too.

With this in mind, there are some important trends that are relevant to the hospitality industry as a whole, as well as trends that have emerged in response to the pandemic. From helping your business promote safety in marketing and guest communication to helping you find a renewed focus on local customers to helping you understand relevant hospitality marketing trends through data, Ridge Media will help your business navigate your marketing strategy in these post-COVID waters.

Meet your team.

From oyster bars to upscale restaurants to fancy resorts, we’ve worked with all kinds of businesses in the hospitality sector. Our versatile team of marketing consultants is constantly adapting to the ever-evolving digital marketing landscape and newly emerging trends across the entire spectrum of the hospitality niche. That is how we produce clear, measurable, and repeatable results for hospitality businesses while maintaining transparency and intelligibility when communicating those results with clients. As your marketing consultants, our primary goal is to utilize this unique skill set and industry expertise to help scale your hospitality business.

Kenny
President

Kenny Ridgell

Sarah
Creative Director

Sarah Tate Calhoun

Erin
Senior Account Executive

Erin Danfy

Lauren 1
Account Executive

Lauren Williams

Kathy
Graphic Designer

Kathy Do

RM JustinMerrell crossed3
WEB DEVELOPER

Justin Merrell

DavidGarrison e1635872691729
WEB DEVELOPER

David Garrison

John
Vice President

John Townsend

President

Kenny Ridgell

Kenny Ridgell is the founder of Ridge Media, LLC. Ridgell began the company while attending the College of Charleston in 2014 where he graduated with honors and gained a BA in Business Administration with a focus in entrepreneurship after beginning his college career as a Biochemistry major.

Today’s age of data-driven marketing offered the unique opportunity to merge his love of innovation, art, and science into a digital marketing firm that practices the scientific method daily through setting up experiments that use modified variables to impact the outcome based on hypotheses.

WHAT IS THE MOST ANNOYING HABIT THAT OTHER PEOPLE HAVE?

Not refilling the ice trays in the freezer.

WHAT IS ONE SONG YOU HAVE COMPLETELY MEMORIZED?

Lil Wayne “Sky is the Limit”

WHAT GAME OR MOVIE UNIVERSE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO LIVE IN?

Star Wars

E:kenny@ridgemediallc.com

C:864.354.6175

Creative Director

Sarah Tate Calhoun

Sarah joined the Ridge team in 2017 as a graphic designer after graduating from the University of South Carolina with a degree in Visual Communications and has made her way to the Creative Director role over the years. She wears many hats at Ridge but her primary responsibilities include: overseeing the account executives and our contractors, project management on projects such as websites, branding, and production, front-end website design, interviewing internship and job candidates, and debriefings with Kenny.

WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO START THE DAY?

I love starting the day off with a workout

WHAT TV SHOWS ARE YOU INTO?

I love it all. Anything from Reality TV to the classics

WHERE DO YOU USUALLY GO WHEN YOU HAVE TIME OFF?

Anything outdoors – whether it’s hiking, a rooftop bar, or wherever that allows my dogs.

Senior Account Executive

Erin Danfy

Erin is from Greenville, South Carolina and graduated from the College of Charleston in May 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in Marketing. Looking to move back home to the Upstate, Erin was hired at RelayPM gaining experience in SEM Management helping to budget and manage several companies’ campaigns. She joined the Ridge Media team in November 2020 as the Digital Marketing Analyst managing our client’s SEM campaigns. Erin quickly grew into an Account Executive role managing several of our client’s social media campaigns while still having a hand in SEM. Erin is now our Senior Account Executive.

Do you prefer mornings or nights?

I prefer mornings! One of my favorite things to do on the weekend is go out for coffee in the morning and walk around downtown.

Who was your childhood actor or actress crush?

My childhood actor crush was Zac Efron. High School Musical is a cinematic masterpiece.

If you could take 3 things to a desert island what would they be?

If I could take 3 things to a desert island, they would be: Netflix, my cat Benji, and soap.

Account Executive

Lauren Williams

Lauren is from Charleston, South Carolina and graduated from Clemson University in August 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in Graphic Communications. Lauren originally joined our team as a Graphic Design intern back in 2020 during her time studying at Clemson University. She fell in love with the Upstate and decided to move up to Greenville, South Carolina after graduating. Fresh out of college, she gained strategic marketing experience working as a Channel Marketing Manager at ScanSource – managing and supporting the marketing needs and relationships of their partners. She decided to rejoin the Ridge Media team in April 2022 as an Account Executive.

What fictional family would you be a member of?

I loved the Cheaper By the Dozen movies growing up, and always thought it’d be fun to be part of a huge family. Either them, or the Tanners from Full House.

If you could time travel, which period of time would you go back to visit?

Definitely the 70s. I love the music and fashion from that time period and would love to go back and experience the music festivals.

What is your favorite local restaurant?

Otto Izakaya, they have the best sushi in town.

Graphic Designer

Kathy Do

My name is Kathy and I am currently a student at Clemson University. I grew up in Fort Mill, SC and have lived in South Carolina for my whole life. One day, I hope I will be able to have stories of my life around the world.

What was your last song on your spotify?

My last song played on Spotify is Billie Ellish’s new album, Happier than Ever.

When you were six years old, what did you want to be when you grow up?

When I was 6 years old, I wanted to be a gardener because I loved helping my dad out in the garden.

Do you prefer mornings or nights?

I prefer nights over the mornings!
WEB DEVELOPER

Justin Merrell

Justin has over 20 years in the digital marketing and traditional advertising industry. He can take something as complex and involved as web development and make it seem easy. Of course it’s not, but he has a unique gift for communicating clearly with clients so that they understand the dynamics of the process and the end result. He creates user-friendly and mobile-friendly web designs that effectively showcase our clients’ offering with targeted audience segments. He is relationship-oriented and works well with clients in a wide cross-section of industries to create optimized online experiences.

What was your last song on your spotify?

Highly Suspect, “Canals”

Do you prefer cats or dogs?

Definitely dogs

Would you rather be able to run at 100 miles per hour or fly at 10 miles per hour?

Run at 100mph

WEB DEVELOPER

David Garrison

David is the consummate professional and web developer extraordinaire. He has 15+ years of experience working in the fields of website design, web development, and graphic design. During that time, he has launched more than 500 websites and finalized over 50 branding campaigns. He has extensive experience working with luxury resorts, high-end real estate communities, technology companies, dentists, attorneys, schools, state parks, local government events, non-profits, worldwide e-commerce stores, and distribution companies. His work was even featured in the HBO Film Mary and Martha starring Hillary Swank.

David met his wife Nan in April of 2018 through a long-time Greenville friend. But there was a catch – she lived 9,000 miles away in Bangkok, Thailand. David devoted countless hours dealing with Government paperwork to help Nan get home to South Carolina. During this time, David flew to Bangkok five times between July of 2018 to January of 2020 – staying about a month every time. In June of 2019, David and Nan were blessed with the news that they were going to have a daughter. She was born in February of 2020 in Bangkok. In March of 2020, just as David and Nan were about to finalize her visa and come home, COVID-19 locked down all American visas – leaving David and his family trapped in Thailand from March of 2020 until August of 2020. David rallied resources and thanks to the help of Senator Tim Scott and Representative Will Timmons, David and his family got clearance to fly home in early August of 2020. David says he was never more happy to see his front door than in August of 2020.

If you had to delete all but 3 apps from your smartphone, which ones would you keep?

EveryDollar – a budgeting app that I use religiously. I’m a very strong believer in personal finance.
Spotify – Because who doesn’t love music?
Photos – At least once a day I find myself scrolling through photos of my family

Vice President

John Townsend

Working as Executive Director of Global Edge Consulting, John has over 20 years of experience consulting for businesses international and domestic with a focus on hospitality and tourism. He has an undergraduate degree in Finance, MBA, and Masters of Management in Hospitality and Tourism. While working as an Adjunct Professor for Florida State University at the Dedman School of Hospitality he focused on tourism research.

In addition, John worked with the Florida Department of Health to provide a technical report on Identification of hard to reach populations and improved risk communications. He sits on the board of the veteran non-profit Thyme and Play and is passionate about the services they provide for families in need.

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