Social media provides for the entire accommodation industry a more direct and sincere communication with the client, while offering a more efficient marketing opportunity. Facebook, with more than 1 billion active users, and Twitter, where thousands of millions of users’ tweet billion times a day cannot be ignored, especially by hotels.
However, there are two main issues to be tackled when it comes to social media. First is to have the tools that help you benefit from social media as a marketing instrument. Don’t be concerned if you use HoteRunner for your hotel as HotelRunner offers you all the tools you might need in the simplest and most practical way.
The second main issue revolves around as to how to use social media. Unless you achieve the results you expect from your activities on social media you are probably doing something wrong. In order to assist you, we have compiled below the most common mistakes made during use of social media for the accommodation industry.
Trying to sell persistently
Social networks are environments where users come together with others in order to spend pleasant time and share interesting topics. A persistent attempt to sell on such an environment may upset users. Imagine you are having a chat with your friends at a café at which point someone interrupts you in order to sell something and disturbs you. The same applies to social networks.
Therefore, try to allocate majority of your marketing activities on social networks to sharing pleasurable content which might draw users’ attention. The history and natural heritage of the region, where your hotel is located, and colorful images of your hotel may arouse interest. Ensure that such posts correspond to 80% of your activities on social networks, whereas attempts at direct sales do not exceed 20%.
The real driving force behind social media is not its ability to gather more than 1 billion people. Rather, it is the existence of users actively interacting with each other and with brands. You would miss the real opportunity social media offers if questions or comments posted on your Facebook or Twitter page remain without an answer. Answer those questions frankly. If those questions are not supposed to be answered at this point or on this specific platform, try to clarify the issue either on the phone or through channels such as e-mails.
On the other hand, you are actually lucky if users are keen on contacting your hotel through your page or your account, because most of the time, you would have to encourage users in order to benefit from unquestionable opportunity of interaction offered by social media. Therefore, ask users questions; share stories that help users dream; let them express their opinions through surveys. This is how you can create the ground where you can interact with the users when they do not necessarily start it.
Appointing already-busy personnel for social media management
Appointing a member of the personnel, who is currently appointed for another task, for social media marketing would enlarge his/her current task definition, ending up with a decline in the time, energy and concentration s/he is supposed to spend for marketing.
If possible, appoint a single member of the personnel for this task as a single task. Unless possible, at least ensure that the marketing department handles social media marketing individually.
Failure to manage a crisis
Social media is an environment where customers can show possible negative reactions most comfortably. Moreover, negative comments on social media can spread faster than you might imagine. Indeed, this is among the reasons why many hotel officers tend to dismiss social media. However, it is not an excuse for alienating yourself from social media. Note that your absence on social media will not change possible negative comments. What will change, though, is that you will also miss the opportunity to respond to those comments.
When you face such a situation, and even if customers’ comments are unfair, do not react emotionally. Rather, clarify the situation within the limits of your professionalism. We recommend you to have a look at our article titled “How to treat unhappy online customers?” for further information about this issue.
The mistakes above are among some of the traps accommodation facilities most commonly fall into. Not repeating those mistakes will help you establish a healthier communication with your customers and increase your sales figures. Have a look at the features of our application to see how HotelRunner can assist you in dealing with such situations.