Social Media & Review Management Trends for Hotels in 2012
By R.J. Friedlander Founder & CEO, ReviewPro | February 19, 2012
In many ways, 2011 was the year reviews and social media went mainstream within the hotel industry – becoming nearly universally embraced by hotel executives as both a key source of customer insight and a tool to achieve operational and service excellence and to drive revenue growth. From my perspective, as founder and CEO of a company that is leading change in the way hotels leverage and benefit from the social web, I would like to share the top trends I see in this area in 2012.
Short-format and mobile reviews will become increasingly common
While written reviews began as the standard in travel planning websites, the rapid rise of social networking and mobile communications has lead to short-format and mobile reviews becoming increasingly important. I may not have time to write a 3-paragraph review of a hotel or restaurant, but I can quickly send a tweet or leave a Foursquare tip about a place while I'm waiting for a cab or in line to check out of my room.
It's important to recognize the importance of these short-format pieces of feedback within your online reputation management initiative. When the author of one of these messages has a large online following - or a high Klout score - the number of people that could be influenced by that piece of feedback can be very large.
Don't make the all-too common mistake of ignoring Facebook comments, Foursquare tips and tweets as a source of valuable operational and marketing insight. While many executives understand these pieces of feedback play an important role in customer service and reputation management, all this data in aggregate provides a rich source of business, market, and customer intelligence.
The profile of the reviewer becomes important
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