Why does your hotel need to be on Facebook
Who knew over ten years ago or so that Facebook would change the world the way it now has. Not even Mark Zuckerberg knew to what extent Facebook would influence what we do everyday. Facebook is the largest online social network and 72% of online adults are now Facebook users. With 1.31 billion global users (and counting), the ubiquitous social media platform is not going anywhere and should definitely not be ignored. Gone are the days when having a company Facebook page was just a “good” idea.
So Why Does Your Hotel Need to be on Facebook?
Facebook allows you to personally engage your fans and to establish a relationship with them that is totally unique. On this platform you are able to receive real-time feedback on your marketing messages as well as add another arm to your customer service department. Facebook also gives you the opportunity to be introduced to your followers’ friends if they engage with your page by “liking”, commenting, or sharing your posts. If a Facebook user sees that their friend is following you (as reported on their newsfeed), they might be inclined to “like” you as well.
Facebook users “like” company pages for a variety of reasons, but two of the most predominant reasons are because 1) they are already a customer or 2) they want to receive discounts and promotions. The fact of the matter is that 71% of social media participants say that they are more likely to purchase something from a brand they follow online. And you should be taking advantage.
Facebook for Hoteliers:
Leverage visual mediaYour hotel is beautiful – take advantage of that available beauty by snapping pictures of all of its glory. With a little skillful cropping and a memorable caption, you will be sure to grab the attention of your followers and drum up interaction. Did you know that Facebook posts paired with pictures receive on average 53% more “likes” and 104% more comments than posts without them?
Create Facebook buzz surrounding your events.You undoubtedly have a few (if not more) noteworthy events happening each year that you and your staff work very hard producing. You’ve already put in the work – now publicize it! If the event is open to the public, create a Facebook Event with the information, pictures, features, etc. As users RSVP, welcome them and send them any additional information they may need and post reminders as your event draws near. Take pictures before and during the event and, if possible, post something in real-time. Post the best of the best remaining images on your timeline in the following days, and wrap up your Facebook Event by thanking your attendees.
- Share the past with your fans.
Have you heard of Throw Back Thursday? #TBT is all the rage on Facebook every Thursday and you don’t want to miss it. If your property dates back to the 1930s, post a picture and description of the hotel exterior when it was just two stories tall. Was your hotel built just a few years ago? Break out those construction images or maybe one of your beloved chef’s culinary school hairdo. Your fans like seeing where you have been.
- Share links to your blog or articles written for your website.
Establish yourself as an expert in the field of hospitality and share your expertise with your Facebook fans. Consumers are more likely to purchase from a trusted expert, and will begin to listen to what you have to say.
What Not to Do on Facebook:
- SELL SELL SELL!
Facebook is not the platform for hard selling. Users do not want to see ad after ad flooding their newsfeed and might even “unlike” your page if they feel like they are being bombarded. Instead, focus on building brand recognition. Let your followers get to know your hotel through the tips listed above.
- Ignore or delete negative comments.
Unless inappropriate or spam, do not delete negative comments. EVER. Address them quickly and appropriately and take them offline whenever possible. If you ignore or delete, your fans could begin to mistrust your brand; if you resolve the issue gracefully, they will see that you care about your guests and you will be able to turn a negative into a positive.
- Neglect your Facebook page.
Your page is like a plant. Care for it, feed it content, and maintain it daily and it should blossom over time. Plant a page and it will grow with your expanding hotel business. If you neglect it, it will wither and over time it will die.
“Consumers use Facebook to interact with friends, be entertained and express themselves through their public affiliation with brands—factors that combine to create a potent viral marketing platform,” stated Jeff Rohrs, VP of Marketing Insights at ExactTarget. “By engaging consumers on Facebook in a way that keeps them entertained, brands have an unprecedented opportunity to mobilize fans and get introduced to their friends.”
Use your Facebook page to engage your fans and keep them interested in your hotel and your brand. Be creative and share fun and exciting content that will not only keep them coming back for more, but keep them spreading your name. Now, get to Facebooking!
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