Whatever the demographic makeup of your guests, it’s safe to say that many of them live out a large portion of their lives on social media – posting holiday selfies, catching up with friends, but also interacting with travel brands, reading reviews and researching hotels and destinations.
Mastering social media has become essential if you want to reach your guests where they are, make a meaningful connection and drive bookings. But since it requires consistently coming up with new and engaging content, maintaining this connection isn’t always easy, am I right?
The good news is, there are plenty of tactics you can use to keep your social media accounts ticking over and your engagement rates consistent.
1. Ask your audience questions
One of the most effective and easiest ways to drive engagement is to pose interesting questions to your audience. To maximise responses, be sure to include an eye-catching image or video with your questions. For example: “We’re loving the warmer weather (enticing pic of your pool glittering in the sun). How would you while away the day on the Gold Coast?”
2. Conduct a poll
Polls are a fairly low effort, high reward method for driving interest during engagement slumps. They are also a crafty way to collect new information from your guests.
As an example, you might run a simple poll asking “What’s the most important factor when choosing a hotel?” with price, location and amenities listed as the options.
3. Tag and mention other people and brands
Mentioning people or other brands in your hotel’s posts can help give your social media presence credibility. If you tag them, they’ll know they’re being talked about and be more likely to share your content with their audience too.
Be careful not to overstuff your posts with multiple tags though – that won’t create a good user experience for your guests, and takes attention away from the brands you are mentioning. Far better to come up with several, unique posts and schedule them to be published over the space of several days.
This one may seem too obvious to mention, but getting to grips with hashtags is such an important part of succeeding on social media that it bears repeating. Including the right hashtags will help get your content in front of your guests – which after all is the whole point of your social media presence anyway.
To identify relevant hashtags, conduct a native search on the networks you’re using or have a glance at tools like Hashatit or Hashtagify.me. Don’t forget to also do some research on the best practices for using hashtags on each social network, as there is some variation between platforms.
5. Include compelling images and photos
Another obvious one here, but social media users, and human beings in general, are very visual. Study after study shows that posts which contain an image or video routinely drive more engagement on social media, so get creative and use them to full effect. Don’t forget to include images which give your guests a sneak peak of something new – a room makeover or revamped restaurant menu perhaps. Everyone likes to feel like they are being let in on something exclusive.
6. Capitalise on trending topics and current events
Conversation-worthy new items are rarely in short supply. Cast your eye over the trending news topics on Facebook and see if there’s any way you can jump on the bandwagon and encourage your guests to share their thoughts on your pages.
7. Run a contest
When done right, Facebook contests are an almost unbeatable tactic for driving engagement. Come up with a contest that is unique, incentivised and easy for guests to participate in - if it’s the kind of contest that demands user-generated content, all the better.
Before you get started, make sure you remind yourself of the social network’s contest rules to avoid incurring any penalties.
Whatever tactics you choose, just remember the aim of social media is to build your relationship with your guests. The best way to achieve that is to be consistent, conversational and compelling wherever you can.
Will you try any of these tactics as part of your hotel’s social media efforts? Let us know in the comments below!
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