Why Hotels Do Social Media Poorly
The world of hotels is a world which can, and should, use social media more than many others. But, despite this, so many hotels have poor social media.
I must admit, I feel like I am ranting a little in this blog. That’s not because I am offended by being rejected when I have my ‘salesperson hat’ on, but because as someone working in hotel social media, it is frustrating to see hotels mis-represent themselves through social media. Seeing a fabulous hotel post poor, off-brand content with terrible text on social media makes me cringe. In this blog, I’ll discuss why, and what they can do about it.
The most common problem I come across is that the team member in charge of social media has no time. Corporate, or the bosses, have assigned someone to look after social media, but it’s not their area of expertise, and its number 100 on their ‘to do list’ every day. Completely understandable, but this does mean hotels are missing the opportunity of greater reach, new sales, customer engagements, and so much more.
Often, the person in charge of social media for the hotel or chain doesn’t think it’s important because they don’t get it. While I am admittedly biased, I still find that hard to digest considering social media is everywhere in marketing today. When their social media is conveyed in a poor light compared to its competitors online as they fail to impress social-savvy potential guests. It’s the hotel’s loss if they don’t use social, or if they use it poorly.
What to do
There are various avenues to go down to improve a hotel’s social media, (somewhat) regardless of budget, and regardless of expertise.
The cheapest, but admittedly less impactful, method is to put a strategy in place for one of your in-house team members to run social media from. This would involve laying out a plan for number of posts, content, style, and a list of tasks which need to be performed daily/weekly/monthly. The problem here is, if the team weren’t doing social well to begin with, it’s unlikely to change and last to a high standard. Going down this route, you also miss out on innovation, extra elbow-grease and expertise from industry experts.
The other way to keep social in-house, but with better results, would be to work with a social media consultant or agency to train your in-house team the necessary skills, and laying out an effective strategy for them. We do this at Founders Media. While you make use of industry-specific expertise here, it does cause the same potential problem of complacency within the team.
Of course, I’m going to say you can outsource your social media to a company like Founders Media. We work with hotels globally and cover the full process – from content creation and regular posts, to community management and paid campaigns. My honest opinion, from observing each method, is this one. While there are disadvantages of outsourcing anything, there are sufficient ways to bridge these problems, and the benefits of utilising industry-specific expertise significant outweigh any issues when it comes to results.
What do you think – what’s the best way for hotels to run their social media? I’d love to hear your thoughts, and thank you for reading!