How To Connect with Travelers on Facebook

Build, scale, connect, integrate, and target. This is the path many marketers are following to build their Facebook strategy. Most have started off strong and built a large Facebook audience. What comes next? Connecting with them.

Rich Fleck’s article The Facebook metrics you should be tracking actually goes beyond what the title suggests. It not only gave us some things to think about in our own Facebook strategy, but also offers great suggestions that I believe are valuable to hotels and their strategies.

Here’s a look at three key takeaways and how they apply to hotels.

1. “Start creating unique experiences that motivate consumers to engage because they want to be part of the experience itself — not because they want to win something.”

Unique experiences need to be created to encourage growth and motivate consumers to engage.  Although the most common metric to measure success is size of audience, marketers still need to develop a relationship with their audience and measure engagement. Some hotels are doing this successfully by adding visually driven stories using interesting narrative and rich media to their pages. They also focus on  ensuring their posts are always written in an interesting manner that aligns with the hotel’s story. And, some are even linking these stories to special offers that help in referring shoppers to their booking engines.   The Best Western Plus Rockville Hotel & Suites has used these items to make their Facebook page engaging and interactive.

2. “There’s more to Facebook engagement than managing the newsfeed and wall posts. According to a recent ClickZ study, 74 percent of consumers ask their social networks before making a buying decision.”

Giving consumers what they need to validate their purchase right on Facebook will give your hotel a competitive edge over others. This infographic, shows that 97% of consumers had an online experience that influenced whether or not they bought a product form a certain brand. Facebook is no exception. This clearly shows that marketers must set up their Facebook pages (and all other touchpoints) to present the hotel in its best light with a compelling and interesting story.

Les Suites Hotel Ottawa has taken the time to ensure that their hotel’s Facebook page doesn’t leave anything out – images, video, amenity descriptions, and so on – it’s easy for a consumer to validate that it is a great place to stay (without even leaving Facebook).

3. “Integrating content that goes beyond selling a product but is still in line with your audience’s interests is an effective way to drive ongoing engagement.”

By putting more thought into how you communicate with your Facebook audience, you will build a tighter, emotional connection with them and drive interest. The DoubleTree Hotel Bay City is a popular wedding venue. With this in mind, they have created a rich visual experience within Facebook all about the perfect wedding day at their hotel. Now that’s a great way to connect with a specific audience.

There is more to your hotel than a list of amenities so ditch the generic content and tell your hotel’s story with rich and interesting visuals and narrative… maybe even show people interacting in—and enjoying—your hotel!

Where are you at with your hotel’s Facebook strategy? What are your tips for engaging with consumers? Post a comment and let us know!

The examples in this blog post are hotels that are using the VBrochure Facebook Apps Suite. Learn more about how these apps can help you better engage with your Facebook community.

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