Do’s and don’ts of Social Media for hotels
With the start of internet it became possible to share your identity online with the rest of the world. This has always been one-way traffic but with the arrival of social media the consumer can actively participate, react and share their opinion on hotels on the sites. Often hotels don’t know how to react and handle social media.
Hospitality Ebusiness Strategies (HeBS) has made a list of most common mistakes made by hotels regarding social media in 2010.
1. Utilizing an irregular and infrequent posting schedule.
This way your guests, fans and followers don’t know what to expect and interest will water down.
2. Posting boring, one-way content.
To keep your guests interested you need to communicate. For example post some messages and ask the guest for an opinion about certain subjects.
3. Creating a non-optimized page lacking keywords.
If you use the wrong keywords your posts will be hard to find. Use Google Adwords to find out which keywords are often used.
4. Not responding to user comments and questions.
If you ignore your guests on social media they will quickly stop following your hotel and may in future even book another accommodation.
5. Not recruiting followers within your target market to help build your follower base.
Think about who you want to target and find out which social media they frequently use.
6. Failing to regularly update your fan page with new photos and events.
Your followers are interested in the goings-on at your hotel. Show them !!! If your hotel has renovated some rooms and you put some pictures on Facebook, your fans will surely want to check them out for themselves.
Of course a list with do’s must follow.
1. State on your website on which L.B.S your hotel can be followed and the relevant links to these pages.
Invite visitors to become online friends or fans and make them follow you on Twitter.
2. Respond as much as possible to negative reviews.
Guests find it very important their opinions are validated. If you respond to a negative review and you handle a complaint to satisfaction chances are a guest will return and write a positive review about your hotel service.
3. Try to make a guest write a review about your hotel.
2/3 of all guests reads reviews before they actually book a hotel. Therefore let them know how you can be found.
4. Twitter the daily restaurant menu.
With this you’ll pull passers-by next to your current guests.
5. Tune your social media to your targets.
If your focus is for example on business travelers then a profile on LinkedIn is a better option than MySpace.
6. Integrate social media in your companies culture.
Make sure more departments of your hotel will Twitter, place post on Facebook and write blogs.
When the above do’s and don’ts are observed you will accomplish your goals and Return on Investment will be achieved sooner.
Kim van den Wijngaard