Implementing Social Media into Your Hotel Marketing
A most effective and FREE marketing tool you should always leverage for promoting your hotel is social media. To be relevant in today’s digital culture you need to be where everyone else is, and that’s Instagram, Facebook and blogs.
Facebook – If you own or run a business of any kind, you need to have a brand business page that is “likeable” with content that is “shareable”. Facebook has become bible for digital natives/ millennials, and let’s face it, they’re your target audience from here on out. Ensure that you have clear and illustrative photos of your property posted as well as engaging copy.
Instagram – Instagram has come in as a strong second (nearing first!) most used social media channel. You need to be there. This is a very image-heavy (think 90%) social app. You should publish engaging photos daily with concise yet descriptive captions and make use of popular yet pertinent hashtags to make your brand instagram page more searchable. Cross promote these photos on your Facebook page for brand consistency.
Blogs – Your brand’s blog is important, so don’t shy away from this effective marketing communication tool. Take your following behind the scenes with your blogs. Educate them on what your rooms offer or a new amenity that you’re rolling out for the season. You should aim to post at least once a month. Keep your content engaging and upbeat, yet concise.
Best Practices – Always strive to have an up-to-date editorial calendar. Know ahead of time what you want to publish and when. This makes your social media marketing process easier and more streamlined. If a staff member is good with writing and social media, make them owners of this initiative. Publish your content consistently and with zest. Facebook – shoot for at least one post every other day. Instagram – go for three images a day. And again, try to crank out at least one blog article a month. (this is what I shoot for) Once your followers see consistent engaging content, they’ll be eager to check back and see what’s more to come!
Dealing with negative feedback – It’s a fact of our “social” life that businesses get negative reviews and comments at times. The most IMPORTANT thing to remember when this happens is to not become reactive, do not reply in a negative or snarky manor. When you are on social media you are in a fishbowl for all to see. Keep it classy and come up with a polite and gracious response to show them that you are indeed listening to them. Know when to take it offline and touch base with them directly. With the right tactful touch, you can turn that negative feedback into a guest for life.
The above covers the very basics of hotel social media marketing. With creativity and consistency you can drive room revenue and guest retention for years to come.