Social Media: Tips to Get Them at "Hello”
By Brenda Fields Founder, Fields & Company | April 03, 2011
Just in the last five years, the world has changed as we know it with the ever-evolving social media platforms, which present a myriad of options for marketing, connecting, and selling and buying. Articles upon articles tell us about the increasing importance and necessity for businesses to play in the social media arena. But when it is reported that Queen Elizabeth is "tweeting", and a CEO of a five-star hotel company sent a "tweet", it is obvious that social media, when used unauthentically, comes off as nothing more than an ruse, without positively influencing business or creating a positive image.
So how can hoteliers determine the best course of action, given the choices of social media platforms, the increasing popularity of them, and the corporate strength behind them i.e. Goldman Sachs investing in Facebook and JP Morgan Chase investing in Twitter? This article will address how to implement some good ol' fashioned marketing strategies to ensure that your business can identify and implement the best social media platforms, whether it's a campaign for Twitter, Facebook, Smart Phones, or Google, just to name a few, to achieve your specific goals in the most cost efficient way.
Although the social media platforms are different from the tradition marketing platforms, with which many have grown up, what seems to be missing over and over are the basic tenets of marketing. The technology and its applications may be new, but the marketing principals remain the same. Whatever the platform, no matter how current, simple marketing strategies and tactics should be addressed in every case. They are: define your product; establish the positioning; determine the target audience; understand the specific demographics of the target audience; and maintain consistency in all communications.
Getting back to marketing basics will help demystify some of these new social media platforms and ensure that the owner/manager focuses on what will be effective for his/or her property without wasting valuable time and resources on non-productive tactics.
A realistic understanding of what you are is the first step is plotting a social media campaign. Are you a destination resort, urban boutique hotel, conference center, or a limited service property? Each of these has a specific target customer, which in turn has his/her own reason for the "buy". This understanding allows for crafting the right message, to the right audience, on the right platform.