Social media for hotels and social media in general has had an immense impact in pretty much all aspects of our lives. It has changed the way we relate, learn, have fun, and even affects how people chose to travel. Knowing that direct internet booking are increasing at a pace of 50% annually, it’s more of a fact than a choice. Hotels have to get into the online world if they are to keep up with customer’s trends. If people are changing the way they communicate and relate, then hoteliers must follow suit and adapt to a changing environment.
So, here are some techniques of social media that hotels can use for their advantage?
KNOW YOUR MEDIA, KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS
Hotels looking to tap the professional/business travelers markets, should opt for a strong presence on Twitter, a platform which is filled with professionals and tech savvy individuals. Along the same lines, LinkedIn would also be a good social media outlet to focus on when searching for the business travelers, as this site is used by millions of professionals worldwide. By being active on these social media sites properties can create a following and put themselves in a good position to be found by new potential customers.
REACHING NEW CLIENTS
A strong presence within social networks allows hotels to constantly update their upcoming events, promotions, amenities and services to a wide range of potential customers without spending huge amounts of time and money in advertisement, and don’t forget, people are online all the time! All it takes is to maintain and manage a good following online. Upload relevant and quality content while making sure you update this content regularly. As long as there is a good flow of content coming from your hotel across relevant social media outlets and your website, it’s just a matter of time until more and more new potential customers stumble upon it in the web and share it with their friends. Learn how to make a great Facebook Fan Page and why you should use Twitter.
FOCUSED MARKETING AND ADVERTISEMENT
It is a fact that travelers worldwide, both leisure and business travelers, are choosing to make their own arrangements through online travel agents and directly through hotel websites. Social media sites make it extra easy for you to reach your target market, now a days you can target huge groups of people (as many as you like really, as long as you have the money off-course) based on their age, income group, interests, geographic location, circles of friends and many, many other factors. It then becomes easy to create taylor made marketing campaigns, for example, hotels that specialize in family vacations can send ads to people that they know have children and the means to pay for the hotel’s products. On top of allowing for a specific targeting of people, social media marketing also means a reduction of advertisement costs.
BOOST YOUR BRANDING
Behind retail, hospitality is the second largest industry for mobile engagement. More than two-thirds of hotels provide mobile optimized sites to allow for mobile bookings from their customers. Social media provides the perfect platform for you to boost your brand to your customers. You can target specific markets and advertised on your customers’ mobile phones. You can also invest in a mobile app and build a lasting relationship with your customers.
INCREASE DIRECT BOOKINGS
Direct bookings from mobile devices have significantly increased during the last decade. It is now responsible for more than $8 billion in hotel bookings every year. He is visible on all major social media platforms, you can increase your direct bookings and allow customers to easily make a booking with your hotel with a few easy steps.
HIRE TALENTED INDIVIDUALS
Another added benefit of social media is that it allows hotels to hire talented individuals. You can tap into a large talent pool and find the perfect talented candidate for any of your vacancies. Finding the right person for the job is absolutely crucial in the hospitality industry and for the success of your hotel. Linked in alone has more than 400 million users, making it easy to find the perfect candidate.
CONNECTING WITH THE CUSTOMER
The stronger the emotional connection with a customer develops your hotel/brand, the more chances there are of that customer coming back, and never forget that for hotels, customer retention is one of the main factors that will guarantee its success. Imagine the great satisfaction potential and regular customers can obtain from receiving an almost immediate reply from one of their comments on Trip advisor or Facebook. It will show not only that you care about their opinions and inquiries, but it will also portray your company as an efficient and well-oiled service providing machine, and to hotels this means guarantee bookings!
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