The hotel industry is currently undergoing an interesting
change in the way it does business. The recession has caused to fluctuation in
business all over the world, some good and some bad. The luxury hotel industry
is practically giving away rooms, and this isn't necessarily a bad thing. There
is still a lot of hotel business to grab, so the hotel that markets the best
socially is going to come out on top in the end.
A strong social media presence can be that extra uNF which keeps the tough times at bay, and perhaps even turn out to be profitable. My travels around have lead me to find some amazing deals, which has also put forth new and interesting marketing opportunities. Hotel managers know that they can sometimes lower a room's rate for a guest and still make a buck. Hell, people figured this out and started major corporations such as Priceline.com. If you're not listed in there, bidding with customers, you're definitely losing out on some extra sales.
Hotel companies need to pay close attention to the broad range of hotel social media marketing opportunities that are out there. While it's impossible to manage a profile on all of them, you should know which ones are worth the effort. A Hotel SEO campaign should put a good amount of energy and focus into the top 5 social networks in the industry.
Tip 1) Facebook Pages
A Facebook Page is an absolute must in this day and age of marketing. To me it is the replacement for the newsletter. It's just a web platform in which you can have instant access to a whole host of people who want to hear about your business. You can share you web content right to everyone as well, so you don't have to just market with text. Users will also show off their trust and like for your hotel, and eventually expose their friends to you. This is the power of the word of social mouth.
Tip 2) Twitter Profile
While Twitter can be hard to leverage with only a few hundred followers, you can build a strong profile that can do some SEO damage. Twitter does let you target demographics easily as well, and can be a powerful tool for marketing. It's also free and if you remember from a couple years ago, Dell made over 1 Million USD in their first year.
Tip 3) Ning
Ning.com is not on a lot of people's radar, but it should be. Ning allows communities to form on their social networking platform for free. You can find local and global groups that might be a great match for your hotel. Ning profiles provide links as well as a way to get your social media content in front of the eyes of everyone in that group. There are many groups with thousands of members as well, and is just another growing marketing angle to keep a dedicated eye on.
Tip 4) Youtube
Without a doubt every hotel should have some video content up on your profile page. Youtube not only provides a great link to your homepage, it provides an opportunity to rank for long tail keywords...and rank rather easily. Tons of video content will only result on more eyes seeing your hotel as well as generate targeted traffic if you've done your homework right. A nice juicy tip is to tag your Youtube content properly because they stand a good chance of getting picked up on another social media site. There are hundreds of sites that pull data from Youtube's API, so why not capitalize on that?
This is in my books the most important up and comer in the last year of social media. There are thousands of hotels already active on here and offering users discounts and coupons. This is not a source you want to ignore, and there is no need to worry really. It is easy to sign up and offer coupons for your venue. Once your profile is setup all you have to do is wait for users to start using it, and then measure the traffic in your favourite analytic software.
This is sadly just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the amount of other travel only social media networks out there. In my books it is best to tackle the biggest few at first, and then branch out once you've got your stranglehold on the top five listed here.