If you’re a hotel owner, you have a lot to think about daily. The running of a hotel isn’t always simple, but you must also focus on promotional activities. No matter how appealing your hotel is, if people don’t know about it, you won’t welcome any guests.
In the present day, and for the tourism industry, social media marketing is essential. Likely, you are already using social media marketing for your hotel. If you aren’t, you need to change this situation. If you are, are you getting enough of a return for your time, money and effort? This guide provides social media marketing hotel owners need to know.
What are the benefits of social media marketing for hotel owners?
Some of the leading benefits of social media marketing for hotel owners include:
• You create brand awareness of your hotel
• You can reach a global audience
• You can target your specific audience
• You can provide useful information that helps people a holiday, and make the most of their holiday
• You can answer queries guests, and prospective guests have
• You have an immediate platform where you can share content quickly
With so many benefits of social media marketing, hotel owners cannot afford to avoid this marketing activity. There are many ways to market a hotel, with each destination and location having its unique charms, but there are ways you can reach your audience.
You must know your audience, and what they want from you. It is also critical you know your business strengths and why people book a stay at your hotel.
Facebook marketing is imperative for hotels
There are some people who believe that Facebook has lost some of its lustre, and its hold on people. It is true to say the younger generation uses Instagram prominently, and over time, Facebook’s importance may dip.
However, for the here and now, if you are a hotel owner looking to promote your holiday, you need to use Facebook. In a study undertaken by AdWeek, it was found 52% of Facebook users think about booking a holiday when they use the platform. When friends, family members and colleagues share their holiday snaps or memories, it invariably makes people wish they were jetting off somewhere.
Therefore, Facebook isn’t just a platform to connect with likely travel makers; it is the platform that allows you to engage your audience when they are thinking about booking a trip! The same study said 76% of respondents posted their holiday photos onto Facebook, which will convince other people to book their next trip!
Quick ways to develop your social media presence and power as a hotel owner
If you want to develop your following and create awareness quickly, here are tips for hotel owners:
• Invite your friends, family members and employees to like your page
• Include Facebook links on your website, emails and promotional material
• Place signs promoting your Facebook page around the hotel
• Provide incentives for users to like your page or share tagged content
• Run Facebook competitions for guests and non-guests
• Share content about the local area and community – promote the local area in addition to your hotel
• Answer questions and engage your audience
Utilise Facebook advertising to promote your hotel
Once you have a sizable Facebook audience, you start to develop momentum and traction. People are more likely to share footage and interact on the page. Also, when you have an audience, it becomes easier to reach similar people with Facebook advertising.
There are many ways to target potential holidaymakers with Facebook advertising. One of the most effective ways is to look for people similar to people who already follow you. It stands to reason that if a definable group already likes you, other people who would fit into this definable group will like you too.
With Facebook advertising, you can build up a relationship over a number of posts or weeks. Some hotels advertise and try to make a booking straight away, but this is often a wasted opportunity. You should develop a relationship first, showcasing what your hotel has to offer, and what is available in the local area.
When you have created trust, and a greater level of interest in the holidaymaker, you can then try to create the sale. Too many hotel owners rush this process, and often find their return on advertising investment is poor. There is a lot to be said for taking a slightly longer approach to make sure the customer is more receptive to what you offer, when you get around to offering it.
The stages of developing a Facebook audience – and advertising to them – for a hotel manager:
• You need to know who your audience is, and where to reach them
• You need to deliver the content your audience wants to see
• Target people similar to your existing audience
• Develop a relationship and showcase what you and the area has to offer
• Share reviews and testimonials
• Once a relationship is in place, promote your offers to prospective holidaymakers
Instagram thrives on images and videos
Instagram is an exciting social network platform, which thrives on great images, video clips and aspirational content. In this context, it is ideal for hotel owners looking for a platform which showcases what they offer.
The standard Instagram audience is younger than the Facebook audience. Depending on your hotel and resort, this may even better for your requirements. To make the most of Instagram, make sure you and your staff members capture footage around the hotel and behind the scenes. You should also encourage user-generated footage too, as this helps to show the hotel experience from the users’ side.
Pinterest may be a platform for hotel owners to consider
Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are obvious platforms for hotel owners promoting their hotel, but have you considered Pinterest.
Pinterest is commonly overlooked from a marketing viewpoint, but it is an extremely aspirational platform. As the name suggests, people pin items to their boards that they like to see or which they wish to return to later.
As of 2015, there were more than 1,000 boards which had “travel inspiration” in its title. The count will be higher today. By creating pinnable content, your hotel can be seen and shared by people when they dream of a holiday.
Best practice in social media marketing for hotel owners
If you want to achieve success with social media marketing, follow these steps:
• Know your audience and create content with their needs in mind
• Create original content that is unique to you
• Use video content and images freely, showing people what your hotel is like
• Create an identity or image and stick to if it – if you’re a family resort, be fun and promote safe play, if you’re a business hotel, promote value and efficiency
• Always listen on social media, provide answers and engage your audience
• If you use social media advertising, develop a relationship before you promote and sell
If you follow these social media steps, you’ll find engaging with your audience easier. If you want tailored advice and guidance that helps you promote your hotel, contact Agent Travel today, and we’ll arrange an appointment that will help you reach your audience.
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