The hospitality industry is extremely competitive. The biggest competition is between hotels in similar locations that are trying to attract the same target audience. Whether you’re running a small summer-season hotel, or a chain of hotels working year-long, you need to step up your game to beat the competitors. And, there’s no better weapon for you, than a well-written and executed hotel social media campaign.
Social media is one of the most powerful and effective digital marketing tools that you need to embrace, and use to skyrocket your hotel bookings. To do so, you’ll need to plan and build your hotel SMM campaign carefully. To help you decide which way to go with your hotel social media campaign or why to do it at all, this article has you covered.
Here are 11 steps to building a successful hotel social media campaign. Enjoy!
1. Assess the Market
Before making any major moves for your hotel brand, you need to do an assessment of the market and the way things are currently. This is to make sure you’re not following yesterday’s trends, and are keeping your brand in the center of attention.
Assessing the market implies:
- Learning about the latest trends in the hospitality business
- Positioning yourself among your competitors
- Doing surveys and research on your hotel location
You need to see the bigger picture and understand what’s your current spot in it. That way, you’ll be able to choose a direction for your social media campaign.
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2. Do Audience Targeting
Do you know who your most desirable hotel guests are? Are you aware of the different kinds of people that visit your hotel? Do you know who you wish to attract first?
A powerful social media campaign needs to be designed for your target audience, so you’ll have to define and understand them. Make sure you determine:
- The demographics of your target audience
- Their interests and expectations
- Their needs
- Who or what influences them
You need to get to know them, explore their pain points, and develop your hotel campaign ideas based on those findings.
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3. Set Objectives
There are going to be so many social media campaigns for your hotel, and each one needs to have a clear objective. The end goal is your number one priority when building your campaign.
For instance, those can goals be:
- Raising awareness of your hotel
- Gathering social media followers
- Promoting a special offer
- Increasing bookings during low season
- Keeping your loyal guests active and engaged
- Hiring new people through training courses
- Guests acquisition and retention
A clear objective leads to clear outcomes. Choose your specific goal and build your campaign around it.
4. Perform Social Media Audit
If you’re already using social media, an audit is necessary before you get going with your campaign. Why? Because you need to see what works on which platforms and select the best combination for your next campaign.
Think about the following:
- Which social media platforms does your target audience prefer?
- What were your most successful social campaigns so far?
- What are your biggest competitors doing on social media?
This will provide additional information and even inspiration for your next campaign. Use your previous experience to learn and grow from.
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5. Write the Content
Writing the content for your hotel social media campaign is something you can try doing yourself, or with the help of a copywriter. The written part is important for SEO as well as providing value to your social media followers.
To write engaging and converting content, you need to:
- set a consistent tone and voice for the campaign
- speak the language of your target audience
- design the main message that you want to share
Let’s say you’re doing a post-COVID campaign to encourage people to start traveling again and visit your hotel. Your tone should be inspirational and uplifting, while the main message could be “It’s time to treat yourself with a trip!”.
You could also hire a professional writer to handle some writing for you. Also, make sure to use a great spell and grammar checker before you publish anything.
6. Do Creative Brainstorming
Now that you have an objective, target audience, and data you’ve learned from, it’s time to start creating your next hotel social media campaign.
You need to get creative and do some brainstorming to decide what your campaign is going to look like.
- the social platforms you’ll use
- the type of content you’ll share e.g. Instagram stories, live videos, Facebook posts, etc.
- the colors, fonts, and visuals you’ll use
Try to imagine what your posts will look like and decide on the creative aspect of the campaign.
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7. Use CTAs
You need to come up with several versions of powerful calls-to-action, and use them in your hotel social media campaign. CTAs will help you let your audience know exactly what you expect from them and reach your objectives faster.
Here are some examples:
- Book your dream wedding venue today!
- Ready to relax?
- Make your reservation!
- Yes, I want the perfect weekend for two!
CTAs help create urgency, feed FOMO, and seal the deal.
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8. Come Up With Hashtags
A powerful hashtag can sometimes outlive the campaign itself and help your hotel stay remembered for a long time. We don’t have to name the brands when we write #justdoit, #ShareACoke, or #DoUsAFlavor, right?
You should try doing the same thing.
So, make sure the hashtag responds to the nature and goal of the campaign. It should also be simple and easy to understand. Ask your followers to use it, share it, and spread your message.
9. Schedule Posts
After all the preparation is over, you’ll need to decide when to post and how to keep your campaign going. Scheduling posts is the best way to ensure each new day brings the right results, and you have full control over the situation.
So, create a social media calendar and decide what gets published and when. You should also test different publish times and see when’s your audience is most active and engaged.
10. Promote Your Hotel Social Media Campaign
Luckily, social media platforms allow you to create paid ads and promote your campaign outside of your followers’ base. You should use this benefit to give your hotel the boost it needs.
So, think about using paid and sponsored ads, to reach a target audience that doesn’t know about you yet. You can sponsor specific posts or stories with a clickable link that takes them to your booking page, hotel virtual tour, or online gallery.
The best part about paid promotions is that you get a detailed analysis of the reach and impact it’s made, so you know how to handle future campaigns even better.
11. Test & Analyze
Sometimes, testing is the best way to truly see what works best with your audience.
You can create two versions of the campaign content with the same objective, and perform A/B testing to see what works best. After analyzing the results, you’ll be ready to create more powerful hotel social media campaigns.
To build a successful hotel SMM campaign, you need to strategize, plan, create, and test. It’s a complex process that requires time and effort, but it’s worth it after achieving your initial objectives.
The 11 steps to build a hotel social media campaign that we’ve listed above are more than enough for kick-starting your next campaign and bringing new people to your hotel.
About the Author: Jessica Fender is a copywriter and blogger at GetGoodGrade with a background in marketing and sales. She enjoys sharing her experience with like-minded professionals who aim to provide customers with high-quality services.