Elixir Consulting uses social media marketing to enhance your hotel business’ social engagement, web presence, and outreach with social signals that bring your business into focus and drive community engagement.
As social media platforms gain momentum in user numbers and become a regular part of day-to-day living through the widespread use of mobile devices; they are proving to be a vital marketing channel, especially when it comes to targeting younger customers. Even though many big hotel brands have started to scratch the surface of making use of these social media platforms for bookings and marketing, the state of this practice in the world as a whole is still in its infancy.
Many technology big-wigs around the globe have already made full use of this opportunity with their mobile-adept, social-media user base. Nevertheless, a major adoption of digital forms of payment on a global scale is likely to take place very soon, owing to technology companies actively working out the legislative and technological challenges. The introduction of digital payment has the makings to create newer challenges for the world’s hotel industries, but with such challenges, opportunities closely follow.
With people checking in to and out of hotels daily, there are various opportunities to utilize these experiences to help increase bookings. Before we begin to list of ways hotels can increase their booking numbers through social media, we have to take note of a few important things.
- Search engines like Google & Bing will almost always be the start point for guests when searching for properties.
- Social media is a vital part of this journey for prospective hotel guests and rarely the last point of contact before conversion, which is why social media marketing will more often than not get the credit for its influence in a guest’s booking decision.
- Many hotel businesses don’t give priority to their social media marketing strategies because they either get support from a nationalized brand or they just plain don’t understand how a single guest experience can create and or impact another. Social media marketing for hotel businesses isn’t merely about the ‘Motivational Mondays’ or the fun beach pictures. With the correct strategy, you can drive more guests to your business.
Keeping this in mind, lets now talk about the top 5 ways hotels can lure more guests to their business with social media.
1. Make use of the database you have
Every successful resort or hotel will have a strong CRM. The guest’s information you capture through this system is a great tool for prospective new businesses, retain old guests and simply keep your hotel on the top of your priorities.
You can upload guest’s emails into almost every advertising system on social media platforms to market to these specific users, or create similar audiences that match your guest list to the nearest 1% of users.
If your CRM is split-up according to nights booked, frequency of stay, or other attributes, you can launch some interesting social media advertising campaigns. To earn more bookings, start by utilizing the most powerful asset you possess – data.
2. Listen More, Talk Less
Thinking about social media strategies and thinking about the kind of content you want to post go hand in hand. But what if we told you that there is greater value in listening than in talking when concerned with social media marketing for hotels?
With social tools of listening, you can stay abreast of relevant social conversations existing in your geo-market that your hotel business can participate in.
Imagine helping a guest with a last-minute room booking, or helping a guest plan their dream vacation based on a replied tweet.
Travelers love to share their travel plans on social media, so you should take the initiative to feed them with value for those conversations.
And while you should be proactive, you should also be tactful. Know when to jump in and out of the conversations to avoid being overtly salesly.
3. Promote the Destination First, Property Second
Guess what? There is a very small chance that your hotel business is majorly different than the hotel down the street.
You both have well designed, spacious rooms, a trendy bar and a presumably high-end room service facility, right? But if you don’t stand out from your neighbour down the street, you’ll fall victim to online browsers who delved in price-shopping.
By promoting the brightest and best aspects of your local area and destination, your property indirectly becomes a go-to place for the happenings in and around the region. Once this credibility is established, your hotel will no longer be a place to stay for visitors in the area, it will become the place to stay.
4. Post Stay Delights
Understanding the dynamics of a guest’s experience is vital when trying to facilitate repeat bookings.
Travelers seem to have a lot of excitement (and create a lot of content) while on their travels. However, once their stay concludes, hotels usually lose connection with their guests, and save their details for maybe a newsletter or that occasional email.
If your hotel business can create some content to help guests extend their stay and experience, beyond their stay itself, you can concretize that relationship, and build more awareness that would be on the top of the mind of those who might see the content.
For instance, why not take a look at your Instagram location tags and repost User Generated Content related to your hotel business – and take a moment to thank those guests for staying and posting stories about you. If they somehow re-engage with your business, offer them something incentive for their next visit!
5. Enable Influencers
You never know who is or might be visiting your hotel business, so ensure your social media team is keeping a watchful eye on the content guests create when they visit.
Having a local social media influencer visit and not making sure they have a great stay is a lost opportunity – and you could always indulge in some local influencer outreach and invite important individuals to come and experience your hotel business. Depending on the program you decide to adopt, you can generate some fantastic content that will help create awareness for your hotel business. After all, social media savvy users trust fellow users way more than brands.
From our experience helping hotel businesses with their Social Media outreach, social media marketing can help boost bookings and create awareness. Generating this attention via social media can help greatly when it comes to the being the first point of contact for prospective tenants, even if the hotel booking process is typically via search engines.
Simply put – If you wish to attract more guests, social media marketing is a must.