5 Reasons Your Hotel Should Engage with Social Media Reviews

By Benjamin Jost Co-Founder & CEO, TrustYou | February 04, 2018

Facebook has been ranked the #1 site used for travel inspiration, and in 2017, Facebook continued to be the most widely used social media site. Twitter has 317 million monthly users and there are 500 million tweets sent every day. 75% of Instagram users take action, such as visiting a website, from an ad on the platform.

Social media allows hoteliers to put their business in front of potential guests and to communicate with travelers and/or guests, in the easiest way possible. But it comes with certain challenges, too. The most common example is with reviews. While most are great, the occasional bad review can halt your positive marketing to a stop. However, if managed the right way, engaging with social media reviews can increase bookings and even influence direct hotel revenues.

Among all the reasons for engaging with social media reviews, five of the most important reasons are:

  1. To Attract New Guests
  2. To Enhance Remarketing Efforts
  3. To Improve Your Online Reputation
  4. To Keep Up with Trends
  5. To Influence the Influencers

In this article, we will discuss these five reasons more in depth, and provide concrete actions that hotels can take to win business across all facets of social media.

1. Attract New Guests by Adding Social Reviews on Your Website

The number one goal of any hotel marketing team is to convert. Even better, it is ideal for that conversion to happen directly through a hotel’s own website, rather than paying a distribution cost to an OTA. Hotels can use social media and reviews to do just this.

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Sales & Marketing: Opinions Matter

Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors manage a complex mix of strategies to attract and convert customers into guests. Part of their expertise includes an awareness of customer behavior during the reservation process, so they can make sure their hotel is favorably positioned. One such trend is the growing popularity of travel review sites. According to one recent survey, 61% of prospective customers consult online reviews in order to validate information about the hotel before making a purchasing decision. Another survey found that the average hotel customer reads between 6-12 reviews across 4-10 properties before making a final decision on where to stay. Similarly, other studies have shown that consumer reviews are a more trusted source of information for prospective customers than other kinds of marketing messaging. In fact, reviews are often considered to be as influential as price regarding whether a customer decides to complete a purchase or not. Plus, travel sites with the most reviews - including recent reviews from satisfied customers and thoughtful responses from staff - were also found to be the most appealing. So having positive reviews on a travel website is essential and can help to increase a hotel's conversion rates dramatically. Of course, there are all kinds of additional marketing strategies for sales and marketing directors to consider - the importance of video and the emergence of live streaming; the implementation of voice search; the proliferation of travel bots; and the development of Instagram as an e-commerce platform. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.