Chances are that you probably ended up reading this article because of an update on facebook or twitter.Clearly these social media are a very quick and easy way of communicating to the masses.So are you using these media to help with hotel sales?
If you have not already done so, you must go ahead and create a facebook page for your hotel.Twitter as well.Facebook is my preference as it allows for greater communication with your ‘fans’.Make sure you send invitations to all your top transient guests, travel agents and meeting planners.These are the same people that you make consistent telephone calls to touch base with – so facebook updates can further facilitate this.
Furthermore, and most importantly, having your top clients being fans of your hotel via facebook helps further define their relationship with your hotel.This way they begin to see your hotel as more than just a venue for meetings or accommodations, but rather a business that they have a valued connection to.
Make sure that you send update to all your ‘fans’, but make sure your updates contain useful information.Information that will help to further strengthen the already-discussed relationship.This is also a great way to let meeting planners know about promotions and ‘hot dates’.
Now for this to happen you will probably need to point your IT department to this article so that they can unblock your access to facebook as they most probably already have done so!
Finally – there is a good chance that your clients will start sending you friend requests (i.e. to your personal facebook account).When this happens you need to categorize those ‘friends’ into a ‘clients’ category.Then go into your privacy settings and lock down the access to your profile that your clients have.This way you do not offend them by declining their friend request, but you are restricting what they can see.Personally I restrict access to my Wall and Photos.
RecentlyI discussed the need for hotels to use social media effectively for building relationships between your hotel and your clients.
So a recent discussion on the forum page of HotelSalesSuperStar (check out www.HotelSalesSuperStar.com/Forum ) was over whether you should create a facebook fan page or a facebook group. I found the following video on youtube to be a very useful response: