The hospitality industry is gaining momentum within the social media world and are seeing the perks of engaging with potential guests.
Over the years, social media has become a popular medium for businesses to utilize as a marketing tool. Not only are businesses using social media to engage with customers, but users are making careers out of posting on social media in hopes of being sponsored or paid by different brands as a social media “influencer.” The hospitality industry, specifically luxury and boutique hotels, is one of the industries that is gaining momentum in utilizing social media and influencers. Why? Potential guests are more likely to book a reservation after scrolling through a hotel’s beautiful social media feed. Content relating to travel has the highest level of engagement because of its transportive effect on viewers. Social media posts also inspire viewers to go on a journey and day dream.
Try not to enter a state of daydream bliss after looking at these photos posted by hotels that made the “Top 10 hotels on Instagram 2018.”
El Fenn Marrakech (@elfennmarrakech, 99.8k followers)
Astarte Suites Hotel Santorini (@santorini_greece, 212k followers)
It is hard not to imagine oneself relaxing at one of these hotels. 82% of customers place trust in companies that are on social media and almost all tourists below 34 years of age turn to social media for suggestions before finalizing bookings. Leveraging social media influencers to stay at one’s hotel can double the likelihood of a direct booking because of the relationship and credibility they have with their followers. A post by an influencer appears more authentic than a classic advertisement. Some hotels will even provide influencers with a discount code to give their followers or a link to guide the potential guest to a page that highlights a special offer at the hotel. Once hotels have committed to a social media strategy, 71% of travel agencies report better interactions and relationships with bookers.
Leveraging Social Media
Whether or not a hotel decides to leverage influencers, it is important to have an online presence as a hotelier. When more than half the 175 million tweets sent everyday mention brands or services and there are 260 million plus posts that tag “#travel,” it is important to leverage social media to drive conversation and positivity amongst potential guests. Messaging capabilities via social media has also made it easy for hotels and potential guests to converse in a casual yet efficient manner. Consumers are actively looking online for inspiration for their next adventure. Hoteliers can have an impact on this decision making process by offering content and easy communication that keeps potential guests thinking about your hotel when planning their next trip.
Positive Impacts of Social Media
Not only has social media had an impact on bookings and inspiring future travelers, it has helped trim marketing costs by as much as 24% for hotels. Video, once viewed as an expensive and taxing form of marketing, is now made easy and available through outlets such as Instagram or Snapchat Stories. Video represented almost 75% of all internet traffic in 2017 and elicits the highest form of engagement. People are four times more likely to engage with video content, giving hotel marketing teams something to not only prioritize but to easily showcase why someone should stay at their hotel.
Whether a hotelier utilizes video, Instagram, or Facebook, forging positive relationships with guests via social media is becoming increasingly important. Entering the social media scene can be a great way to not only connect with guests, but also for showcasing the perks of one's hotel in a cost effective way. For veteran social media implementers and newcomers who are just learning the format, creating a welcoming platform for future guests is essential.