Social Media for Hotels: One of your most important “shares”

By Mike Kistner President, Chief Executive Officer & Chairman of the Board, Pegasus Solutions | June 10, 2012

A colleague of mine has been conducting an informal survey for the last year. It's just one question, "What have you ever bought on Facebook?"

So far, 100 percent of the respondents have answered, "Nothing."

While the prospect of Facebook-generated reservations creates an enticing reason to jump in to the social universe, direct revenue generation should not be the main focus of your hotel's Facebook presence. Booking through social media is still a new concept, and most users are still uncomfortable providing payment details through social media platforms (have you?). Though minimal reservations are made through Facebook, we do see traffic being driven from social media to a hotel's website.

Simply put, social media is media for social interaction that should be used to engage guests and drive them to your established revenue-generating channels such as your mobile or desktop site.

In an effort not to sound like Meryl Streep's Donna in Mamma Mia, who says she has finally tapped the "Internets" to drive business to her island hotel, I enlisted, Meghan Furtado, social media marketing manager for Open Hospitality for her top shares on hotel social media.

What I learned is that social marketing has the same foundational rules of traditional marketing: what you say and where you say it totally depends on who you're talking to.

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