Marketing Hotels Through Social Media

As the number of people who log on to the internet continues to grow, the World Wide Web has become a significant tool for marketing businesses, especially in the hospitality industry. Marketing hotels online allows the establishments to create a presence and give their clients-new and returning-the kind of convenience only the Internet can provide. One of the most important aspects of internet marketing is marketing through social media or social networking, a method that is being adapted by hotels today.

What is social media? This is a type of content found on the Internet that is easily accessible and relatively easy to publish. Others refer to social media as the “democratization of information”, a shift from standard industrial media like television and film. Blogs, internet message boards or forums, video sharing sites, feeds-all of these are examples of social media.

How do hotels serve to benefit from such social media? Since social networking is generally driven by user interactions, then it functions similar in many ways to word of mouth. Who wants a bad review? One negative comment on a particular site may spell the difference between fully-booked accommodations and a ton of empty suites languishing the night away.

Vital information not found on a hotel’s own web site can be generated through social networking, and more often than not that information becomes much more personalized, and therefore much more authoritative as it is an actual experience by someone who spent the night or went to attend an event in a particular hotel. Reviews and opinions matter.

In the same vein, galleries of hotels showcased in blogs and image-hosting sites like Flickr have great potential to draw interest from the online market. It will amaze many people to see how many are swayed by seeing actual images of a hotel. It’s like a visual word of mouth activity.

Alternatively, social media offers a different avenue to connecting with possible clients. Some hotels have been noted to send their representatives to comment on some blog posts or reviews, so that there’s an adequate perspective presented or in order to address some points brought up in the review.

Additionally, social networking sites, particularly Facebook, allow hotels to set up their own accounts and sort of hoard fans or group members so that those people connected to the hotel’s account will be able to receive periodic updates and be informed of status changes and all sorts of other hotel developments-and the potential clients receive these types of information in real time.

The most important thing about hotel marketing through social networking is that, well, most of the time it’s free publicity. There’s no need for hotels themselves to incur any expenses, save perhaps for banner ads and pay-per-click advertising. That’s because most social media are hosted on their own respective sites operated by independent companies. That means hotels have access to a good share of marketing at little to no cost at all.

Social media, as many believe, fuses technology and sociology. Hotels seeking to establish an online presence and increase traffic both to their web site and to the actual establishment are already taking advantage of the opportunities that are abundant in social media marketing. If you see some form of hotel marketing the next time you visit your favorite social networking site, don’t be surprised.

Boutique Hotel Internet Marketing

Boutique hotel internet marketing has dramatically changed this past few years. Never has there been a better time to get a tremendous amount of exposure, website traffic, leads, and new customers from the worldwide web, though. The opportunity to be the number one establishment in your local area is there for the taking. Here are some things to do immediately when it comes to marketing your hotel or resort online.

Use Social Networking

Facebook and Twitter come to mind as the major social networking front-runners. Facebook itself boast over 600 million users at present. Talk about a massive lead generation powerhouse! You can meet targeted people locally or related to a specific industry on social networking websites, building trust and credibility fast.

Facebook, and most other networks, now have an ads section similar to Google AdWords where you can get mass exposure in no time at all. Knowing how to harness this medium can give your hotel / resort all the growth you want.

Get Online Reviews

Google Places, Yelp, TripAdvisor, and CitySearch are a few places you can start. Hold contests and incentives for your current and past customers to get them to provide feedback. People trust other people’s reviews so you can use this to your advantage when it comes to hotel internet marketing.

Amazon.com is prime example. Most often when you go there, you read the reviews before ever purchasing a book. Why? Reason being, you want to get unbiased user feedback to make an educated decision.

Create and Distribute Videos

Video is a very powerful medium to connect with any brand and get a sense of the establishment before ever being there. Customers want to see the place live before ever setting foot in your resort or boutique hotel.

If you have knowledge of search engine optimization and internet marketing, you’ll be able to rank the videos on the first page of Google for high-traffic search terms, too. Then, you can sit-back as they work for you 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.

Start a Blog

A blog is your home-base online and can be a good place to bring the traffic to from your other lead generation campaigns. WordPress is the best platform to use and make sure the blog gets installed directly on your website. Never use a sub-domain.

It’s important to post regularly on the blog and know how to optimize each post for Google and other search engines. This can be a great traffic generator once your blog establishes a bit of authority. This boutique hotel marketing strategy is like a snowball that can turn into an avalanche eventually.

Aggressive boutique hotel internet marketing is necessary for those companies wanting to grow quickly in today’s time. It’s the easiest and most effective way to stand out from all of the other chain and corporate hotels. Having a seasoned hotel marketing consultant by your side to implement these campaigns can fast-track your growth, too.

Hotels and Online Marketing

Without a sliver of a doubt, online marketing has spawned its own set of rules and principles. The dynamic online audience has become essential for marketing because of the sheer number of people who spends hours upon hours in front of their computers browsing away at their favorite sites. Perhaps that’s a big reason why even hotels are turning to the World Wide Web to sell their stuff and build relationships with clients.

The online world serves as an important platform where hotels can establish their presence, making life more convenient for possible guests because they can see all sorts of vital information even before they make their reservations. This all starts from the hotel’s own web site, of course. Still, there are many other sources such as hotel blogs and reservation sites that feature press releases and even user-generated content.

Pictures, the kind of accommodations, research on sights to see, and even feedback on the hotels themselves are just some types of information that the vacationer or traveling businessman can find online. Want to know what you can find in this or that hotel? One quick search through search engine Google nets a few pages’ worth of information already.

With the dawn of search engine optimization and search engine marketing, increasing the visibility of a particular web site has become a tad more serious business. Businesses, including hotels, are paying more attention to calling attention.

Another platform that has been transforming the online marketing landscape is the widely-popular social networking site Facebook. With tens of millions of users logging on to Facebook everyday, it has become an important tool for marketers, as well. Just imagine having a presence there and being able to maintain client relationships while having good chances of generating new clientele because of the word-of-mouth nature of the platform.

Viral marketing is also a big hit online. While it can also be quite effective in real-world marketing, the variety of online platforms-blogs, social networking web sites, e-mail, etc. offer a much more dynamic execution for the viral campaign. An example of this is the Fairfield Inn viral video, which has been well-received by critics.

Online, it is also much easier to update people on the changes to hotels. For example, hotel rebranding can be immediately shown and explained on web sites, then blogs and showcase sites will be featuring that rebranding as well. Promotional campaigns and specialized one-off offerings can also be directly presented to customers online.

Additionally, clients can enjoy convenience as well, since they can access various information about the hotels they are looking into-all at the comfort of their own homes or work stations. All it takes are a few clicks.

Overall, online marketing is definitely an indispensable tool for hotels seeking to maintain customer relations and establish new relationships with potential clients. As more and more people of all ages and from all walks of life get on the World Wide Web, it becomes increasingly important for such businesses as hotels and other members of the hospitality industry to establish a good online presence.