Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Ball

Corbin Ball

President, Corbin Ball Associates

Corbin Ball, CSP, CMP is an internationally recognized expert on technology. His articles have appeared in hundreds of national in international publications and he has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and USAToday. Corbin serves or has served on numerous hotel, corporate, convention bureau and association boards. He is the only person to have received both the MPI International Supplier of the Year and the MPI International Chapter Leader of the Year awards. He has been named for four consecutive years as one of "The 25 Most Influential People in the Meetings Industry" by MeetingNews Magazine and has spoken to groups in 30 countries, on five continents in a manner that is engaging, understandable and fun. For more information visit www.corbinball.com or twitter.com/corbinball

Mr. Ball can be contacted at 360-734-8756 or corbin@corbinball.com

Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.