New Highlights for Social Media

By Cindy Woudenberg Founder, LuCorp Marketing | June 16, 2013

In the last few years, Social Media has undergone a myriad of changes. New players have come on the to the scene, a number of informational websites have gone 'social' and, in addition, existing social media platforms have changed considerably. Where do hotels direct their effort in utilizing Social Media for the best return today? How does a hotel keep up with the many changes and rapid development in the Social Media world? Although change can feel like it happens overnight, a hotel's Social Media Marketing (SMM) efforts should always be driven first by the idea of engaging and promoting the brand to the customer and secondly by incorporating changes into the portfolio of a SMM Plan.

Before we go into the details of change on the horizon or discuss the current available platforms on the market, we want to make the point that Social Media should be utilized with focus towards a set goal.

The Purpose and Goal of Social Media Marketing

Setting a Social Media Marketing (SMM) Plan is a key component of an overall Business Plan for a hotel. Let's talk about setting action plans and goals when developing an initial SMM Plan for a hotel.
When setting action plans and goals, SSM should focus on the following:

  • Outlining goals with audience in mind and align with corporate objectives
  • Develop a road map and plan for execution
  • Establish structure for revisions and measurements for campaigns

The first step, outlining goals, is often the easiest to do but should contain intentionality beyond driving business. The SMM Plan serves as a roadmap for the monthly workflow that details specific tactics designed to advance a hotel's key marketing mission and objectives. Within the SMM Plan are several specific actionable plans that should be put in place. The goals set for the SMM should contain commitment to boost sales and increase revenues. It may also specify other items such as improve customer service, promote events, develop contest campaigns, etc. Several examples of focus could be "being the flagship hotel in an area," or "establishing the hotel as the friendliest hotel around," or "providing the finest personal service." Many of these ideas can come from the hotel's mission and vision statement and should easily transition to the SMM Plan. It is important to note that the Social Media Marketing Plan is only part of the integrated marketing plan and overall hotel mission. Additional goals and objectives for the SMM Plan should reflect in the entire operation of the hotel.

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Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.