When Instagram stories were unveiled back in 2016, they didn’t start off on a great foot. At the time, Snapchat was very popular, and people were confused as to why Instagram would release a feature that was so similar to Snapchat.
Many thought brands would recycle content between the two apps and, in general, the new feature was met with a lot of skepticism. Fast-forward to today, Instagram stories have become a tool like no other, especially for businesses in the hospitality industry.
So how are Instagram stories useful for hotels? The classic hotel marketing strategies have been effective throughout the years, but using Instagram gives a whole new spin to the beautiful stills and hotel tours that are traditionally used for hotel brochures.
Instagram stories allow hotels to engage with their customers and potential customers, giving in a more personal touch and prompting people to share their hotel experience on their own social media.
If you want to find out more about how Instagram stories for hotels can be used, read on!
1. Cross-promote your hotel’s social media channel audiences
If you’ve built an audience in another social media platform, let’s say Facebook, but it seems like they haven’t noticed your Instagram feed, don’t worry. There are ways to transfer your loyal audience over.
To start cross-promoting to get a customer to click follow on another social media platform you need to create incentives.
For example, let your audience on Facebook know that you’ll be releasing a special promotion or a discount code on your Instagram page for their next stay, or offer special perks like tours that will only be posted on your hotel Instagram. This will certainly prompt your audience to flock over so they don’t miss out.
“The story feature is time-sensitive, and a story will expire 24 hours after its posted, take advantage of this! Tell your audience about a special deal they’ll only be able to access from your Instagram story in the next 24 hours and watch those engagement numbers shoot through the roof.”
2. Give guests the chance to engage before, during and after their stay
Instagram stories are a great tool to show “a day in the life” of. This involves showing, through short snippets on Instagram, what a day staying in your hotel looks like. Snapshots of the food, the facilities, the fun, and the scenery are great ways to engage your audience.
Also, encouraging your guests to tag the hotel and sharing their content on your page is a great way to keep them engaged during their stay as it’s exciting for a guest to feel noticed. If you have Instagram influencers visit, have them do a takeover for a day, this means their audience will likely check your page out as well.
Always having the book button available throughout your stories is a great way to make potential customers’ lives a lot easier and encourage them to book their stay. You can encourage people to keep on engaging with your page after their stay by creating things like photo competitions of their best moments in the hotel, or promotions that offer returning guests a discount if they follow your page.
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3. Keep announcements to your Instagram stories
It goes without saying big, important announcements that will impact your guests or business significantly should be made officially and clearly on your website. However, for smaller announcements that will keep customers in the loop, use your Instagram stories.
“You can use the video and audio features of Instagram stories to show off a new hotel menu for example. Not only does this give customers a sneak peek at what’s to come, but they’ll also be more inclined to follow your page to make sure they stay in the loop about the events and changes that are happening throughout your venue. Nobody likes to miss out,” says Kelly Cone, a business writer at State of writing and Ukwritings.
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4. Tease some live music or event
If you’re holding any sort of event, or you’re having some guest artists come to offer some entertainment, use your Instagram to promote it. Not only will fans of the band (or artist) be more inclined to check your page out, but they may also even decide to book for themselves to get a chance to see their favorite personality.
For an event, posting about the ramp-up on your story will keep your audience buzzing for it. Make sure you also tag the location as it’ll work in your favor in the Instagram algorithm, and it’ll appear on the discover page of new people who might be encouraged to come to check it out.
Also, tag your suppliers and providers, if not just a gesture of goodwill to get some traction to their pages, it’s also a good way to get your story shared on their pages.
5. Show your fun side
Running a hospitality business is a serious affair. But sometimes, it’s good to show a fun side to your customers, remind them their favorite hotel is ran by humans just like them.
When promoting an event or a promotion it’s helpful to use features such as boomerang to create short, fun clips to show your audience a more relaxed and light-hearted side to your hotel.
It’s important to remember that using Instagram stories for your marketing strategy isn’t always about trying to get a customer to book or spend. Sometimes the greatest perk of Instagram is that it allows you to stay close to your customer as a brand, show reliability, and encourage them to keep coming back.
Instagram Stories for Hotels
It’s over to you now! It may sound complicated at first but once you get the hang of it, you’ll find Instagram stories are truly one of the best and simplest ways to give your hotel marketing strategy a fresh makeover and become closer with your customer base.
About the author: Elizabeth Hines writes articles about the latest tech and marketing trends, innovations, and strategies. She also writes for online magazines and blogs, such as Simple Grad, and others. She’s a digital marketer and content writer at Personal statement writer in UK and Custom assignment services.
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