5 REASONS WHY THE ANSWER IS YES
For over a decade now, people have been using the internet for information, buying, selling or simply web surfing. Some thought it would be a passing fad but it’s 2013 and growing more rapidly than ever, especially regarding social media. People, young and old, turn to social media first for an endless list such as connection, opinion, research, inspiration and so on. The hotel industry is no exception and in fact, social media may be its greatest ally.
A verified business page will automatically merge information such as reviews and location of a hotel between Google maps (Google+ Local) and a Google+ Business Page creating some of the strongest internet traffic. Be aware, that your hotel will be listed on Google’s hotel finder, whether you approve it or not, so it’s best to have control over your Google+ Business page and control the information as best as you can. Hotels like The Enclave Suites in Orlando, FL saw an instant increase in interaction and traffic once their Google+ Business page was up and active.
Google’s new hotel finder is proving to be one of the most relevant and important ways people find and choose a hotel. Having an active Google+ business page makes the transition from maps to hotel site or vice versa seamless and easy to the internet user. Easy and hassle free to the customer translates into more business for the hotel.
Although many young people have left Facebook for Instagram, it’s still a trusted and popular forum for the working adults actually spending money on hotels. Using Facebook, people can get information from other real people known to them personally or known through friends of friends.
Twitter is highly effective in getting information out quickly and straight to the customer. One tweet can be read and retweeted a thousand times in a matter of minutes or even seconds. Many businesses, like a href=”https://twitter.com/vodafoneau”>Vodafone, have even turned to Twitter as a modern way to handle customer service complaints.
PINTEREST and INSTAGRAM
Pinterest is the modern Home Magazine. While it’s predominantly used by females, many of them stay at home moms, it shouldn’t be ignored. After all, who plans the details of the family vacation or her daughter’s wedding? Pinterest is attractive, ever changing and interest grabbing. To ignore Pinterest would be akin to ignoring your mother when she gives good advice.
Instagram is a photo driven social site similar to Pinterest but without links to tutorials and blogs. While young people have flocked to Instagram and are posting numerous cross-eyed and tongues-out photos, there are thousands of beautiful travel photos posted daily including vacation stays in various hotels. Having your hotel, or beautiful nearby sights, pictured here is the same as a travel brochure. Hotels like the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills, CA have a beautiful Instagram page and tons of great examples as to how to capitalize on this social platform.
Linkedin is a vitally amped up version of the business magazine. Used for information and connecting with others, in the same or complimentary businesses or professions, LinkedIn is quickly becoming a powerful internet tool. For the hotel industry, it’s the perfect venue for reaching the customer looking for a good business meeting or convention hotel.
Basically, social media is being used whether your hotel is engaged or not. People enjoy social media and despite the frequent news articles regarding privacy or lack of, people have a certain trust in the social media they use. After all, each person decides for themselves who and what to follow or connect with. Steering ahead and learning to manage the social media storm can be a huge benefit for the hotel industry, creating positive branding and reinforcing a customer’s decision to stay in a particular hotel. Social Media is a positive platform, here to stay, and shouldn’t be ignored.
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Carla C. Burton is a self-employed Travel and Hospitality writer with a BBA in Business Administration from Bond University. Although a Gold Coast native, Carla moved to Melbourne in 2008 to further her writing career in the Travel industry. Carla has become a top contributor to many travel blogs world-wide, including many resorts in Orlando, FL, and thoroughly enjoys the freedom that self-employment has provided her. To find out more about Carla or to follow her other posts, follow her on Twitter @CarlaCBurton
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