Home' Hotel Management : HM April 2017 Contents Social
olly Galbraith, founder and director of Go Future Media, a business specialising
in social marketing for tourism products, has a simple social media message –
don’t forget the big sites.
“As much as Instagram is a great fit for travel and hotels, Facebook is still
the star - and so it should be,” she said.
“ The ability to engage via a variety of content types like video, photo albums and blog
posts - plus the way this content can be targeted to your ideal guest, not to mention the
functionality of the ad manager tool – means that Facebook remains the top of the pops
for hotel social media for good reason.”
Kim McKay, founder and director of Klick Communications, seconds this statement,
saying, “Instagram and Facebook are the strongest performing platforms for hotels.
Broadly speaking, we use Instagram to inspire and Facebook to drive bookings.
Instagram is the perfect platform for hotels to showcase beautiful images of their
premises and the destination.
“ The hashtag for ‘travel’ has over 155 million tags alone, presenting a huge
opportunity for hotels to engage in the conversation and attract potential new audiences.
Facebook is still the powerhouse with its huge user base and hyper-targeting ability.
“ This channel is great at driving people down the funnel from awareness through to
conversion. We have seen great success using this platform to drive actual bookings direct
So who is doing it well? And how can we learn from them?
Galbraith says, “Hotels doing social media well are those tapping into the mood of
the moment. This means not just planning and scheduling generic content and stock
images, but having content flexibility. The best piece of advice is from Facebook itself:
‘ The goal of the Facebook newsfeed is to deliver the right content to the right people at
the right time so they don’t miss the stories that are important to them’.”
McKay said that doing the basics well will stand you in good stead.
“Quality over quantity and outstanding community management are the two things
you need to focus on. 21 per cent of Australians use social media platforms to research
travel and accommodation. Often a hotel’s Facebook page is the first interaction between
a potential customer and your brand and first impressions count. It ’s really important to
ensure that everything is up-to-date i.e. website links, telephone numbers, response times
for private messages.
“Community management is essentially the online version of customer service.
Therefore it is imperative that every enquiry is responded to, otherwise hotels risk losing
customers to competitors. One of the biggest questions we are asked is how often should
I post? Unfortunately there is no one size fits all, it really depends on the resources you
have available, the main factor to keep in mind is quality over quantity,” said McKay.
Not convinced yet? McKay said that 52 per cent of Australians unfollowed brands
because the content was irrelevant or unappealing and 32 per cent unfollowed because
the brand posted too much content. With this in mind, it is better to post high quality
content once a week, than posting mediocre content seven times a week that earns very
little interaction from your community.
A further word of caution. Don’t let just anyone loose on your social media accounts.
There have been enough PR disasters that hoteliers have gotten wise to the need for training.
Galbraith said, “One of the biggest challenges for hotels and social media is staff training
and staff turnover. We are seeing an increasing focus to get staff trained and social media
ready. Hotels are realising the importance of real content and creating training programs that
can be rolled out consistently, rather than a one-off, and across multiple sites. n
Most properties have a Facebook
page and an Instagram account but
is this enough? And how can hoteliers
better leverage these assets?
EMMA CASTLE asks the experts.
Social media star:
Kim McKay says
Facebook is the best
way to drive bookings
54 HM The Business of Accommodation
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