The 8 Commandments of Social Media Marketing for Hotels
1. Find your image, and stick with it
Social media is an extremely visual medium, and users go to great lengths to ensure that their profiles and feeds meet a specific aesthetic. This is the equivalent of creating a brand image and is an approach that should be adopted by any hotel brand’s social media accounts. Many hotel brands will have a carefully cultivated brand image with an accompanying personality and tone, which should be reflected in the property’s social media.
The aim is to create a page that people want to follow, even if they haven’t been a guest. By finding a visual style that appeals to your target audience you can find and attract new visitors from looks alone. It is also important that once you find your aesthetic groove that you stick with it, your followers may become disinterested if your content is inconsistent.
2. Know who you’re talking to
This is vital and underpins any good social media strategy. Before you even publish your first post you should have an in-depth understanding of your target audience. Defining who your current customers are, and who you want to reach, will inform all your social media marketing decisions.
Understand why they are following your page, are they brand loyalists, past guests, or aspiring travellers? Which content to they engage with most, behind the scenes staff photos, professionally taken shots of the property, or unique insights into the local attracts? Knowing all of this will help you get the most value out of your social channels are increase engagement potential among your followers.
3. Create a conversation
It is important to remember that social media is not a one-way channel, and this is an opportunity to create a conversation with your audience. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter are especially great for this and allows followers to ask questions or leave feedback for the hotelier to respond to in a public forum. In saying this it is important that you train whoever will be managing your social media pages on how to best respond to consumer queries. Giving a guide on following your brand tone and addressing negative feedback appropriate will save you from any social media blunders and help maintain a consistent brand image.
4. Optimise, always
An important part of effective social media marketing is to ensure that you are getting the most out of every piece of content you publish. Optimising your content for specific platforms and purposes can help you achieve your goals – working smarter, not harder.
For example, if you want to reach new audience members via Instagram, but don’t have the funds to run a sponsored campaign. Focusing on optimising your content to appear on the explore page can help you reach millions of new accounts daily. The use of strategic hashtags, clever captions, and location tagging can be the difference between a handful of views and a viral post.
5. Video is valuable
Video is becoming the cornerstone of social media content and is a valuable tool for any hotelier. The use of video content can provide a dynamic element to your content and is a highly effective visual medium. In addition to this, video content is proven to generate 10 times more engagement and then other formats. For hoteliers, video content can also be used to give virtual tours of your property and showcase everything you have to offer. This can be used across social channels as well as your hotels website as a selling tool.
6. Involve your guests
User generated content has a wide range of benefits and is an excellent social media strategy for businesses. Involving your guests in your social media channels is an excellent way to increase engagement, please your followers and get new and create content with little time investment.
Encouraging guests to use hashtags in their photos can help your profile gain exposure, and it also lets you look at all the photos and videos of guests enjoying their stay. If there is some great content, be sure to approach the original poster and ask if they would be happy for you to re-share it to the hotels account.
7. Invest in the right platforms
Making data driven decisions is an important part of any social media strategy and can save you from investing time and money in the wrong places. Be sure to use analytics tools to monitor your performance and only choose to invest in paid campaigns on platforms where you will get the best return.
Looking at what platforms you have the biggest following, where your audience engages best, and where there is the most potential for growth are all key considerations if you are looking to proceed with a paid campaign.
8. Utilise remarketing
Remarketing is an amazing tool that can help keep your hotel front of mind for potential guests. People may look at your website, and even begin the booking proceed before abandoning or getting distracted elsewhere. However, there is still an opportunity to capture a booking and this is where remarketing can help.
Remarketing on social media platforms allows you to place sponsored ads in the newsfeeds of website visitors, offering them a reminder about your property. You can even pair this with a discount code or special deal to entice them further.