The Social Media landscape is changing for hotels. Gone are the days where you paid an intern to post a couple photos per week on your Facebook page to keep it "relevant". Also gone are the days where Facebook shared your posts to all your followers. They now want you to pay a "boost" fee to reach some of your followers and guests. This latest Facebook blunder has contributed to the rise of other social media platforms and digital marketing strategies. Hoteliers better understand these new trends because their competitors most likely do.
Here are some recent digital media trends in the hospitality and how hoteliers can take advantage of them.
1. Understand Mobile - This does not just pertain to your website any more. It pertains to the whole booking process. People are researching and booking hotels, often at the last minute while in a cab leaving the airport. Test your booking process on multiple devices. Make sure room photos, specials and upgrades are quickly displayed and the booking process is slick.
2. Get Down With Apps - The average smartphone user has over 20 apps installed and chances are that your hotel app is not one of them. Partnering with popular booking apps like Hotel Tonight which only sells rooms for the current day is a great way to sell your unused rooms and increase revenue.
3. Instagram Moments - It used to be a Kodak moment, now its Instagram. Smart hoteliers are allowing their guests to do marketing for them by arranging cool visuals on their property so guests can create their own Instagram moment and share with their friends. Be aware of this and use it to your advantage.
4. Transparency Reigns Supreme - Today's Millennials are most likely more tech savvy than your revenue manager so don't try to fool them or be misleading, they will catch you and it will hurt. Smart hoteliers are looking to see how their property looks on all travel sites - Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google Maps. Make sure the information is accurate especially the photos. Upload photos that accurately portrays your hotel's rooms, lobby, restaurant & location. Misleading Millennials with anything less than complete transparency is not a winning strategy.
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