Gone are the days that Facebook interaction meant just occasional comment exchange on photo albums, notes and status updates. People now get to share links of articles they liked from other sites or photos they find interesting through Facebook and Twitter sharing tools. In fact, social networking giant, Facebook, announced recently that 5 billion pieces of content are being shared on their site every week, contributing significantly on the total online traffic worldwide.
This new way of being social prompted the eTourism Marketing Team to develop a social strategy we have named Social Sharing. This strategy focuses on developing tools for our guests to share their activities and experiences with eTourism Resorts, with their friends.
Our first initiative was for the Development Team to build functionality into the eTourism Online reservations system where guests can share a reservations summary on Facebook and Twitter. This new service encourages guests to broadcast a link to his or her friends when and where they are holidaying. We are currently beta testing its functionality at eTourism Holidays with plans to roll out the functionality to all eTourism Online customers in the coming months.
What’s interesting about Social Sharing is that if any one of their friends click on the link and successfully book accommodation at eTourism Holidays, the sharer may be offered incentives such as cash, gift vouchers, discounts etc. Social Sharing now has more value and excitement for frequent users of these social networking sites. Apart from guests wanting to share what a nice property they have booked to their friends, the possibility of getting an incentive gives them more reasons to hit the Share button.
In Australia alone, there are 9 million active Facebook users. For eTourism clients, this new feature could provide valuable online exposure. So indeed, it’s a win-win situation for both the guest and the resort—one gets freebies and the other generates more exposure.