Due to its highly visual and user-friendly nature, hotels can have great success marketing themselves on Instagram. Instagram now has more daily active users on mobile than Twitter. And, any employee with a smartphone can create photos of the hotel, its events, local activities, and more with very little time investment and little to no cost. Consumers appreciate this impression of an exclusive look into your hotel, and you could benefit from a very high ROI on your marketing spend. Here are a few tips for success.
Leverage user generated content
Encourage your guests to tag their Instagram photos with a certain hashtag. For example, guests at The Four Seasons use #FSFotog. As a result, #FSFotog has grown into a collection of over 30,000 photos of guests enjoying their stay at Four Seasons properties. Another good best practice is to get permission to feature these hashtagged photos on Facebook or a special page on your hotel’s website.
Ask for employee submissions
It’s easy to get the whole team involved in content creation. You never know whether some of your best photos are going to come from the professionals, or from your valet staff.
Try the videos feature
Instagram makes it very easy to take and edit video, and not many hotels are doing it yet. Here’s your chance to shine! Try documenting the setup for a stunning wedding or your chef’s construction of a beautiful dessert. GoodEggs has some great examples of simple, charming videos.
Instagram is unique as a social network, because it can require very little time or monetary investment to cultivate a following. But, we realize that not all hoteliers have the resources to spend on every social network and will have to make some prioritization decisions. When evaluating whether you should invest time and money on a new social network, here are some questions ask yourself:
1. Who are the users of this social network? Is this a place where I can engage prospective guests? Are these users likely to influence my prospective guests?
2. Do I already have content that suits this network, or will I need to create it?
3. Remembering that each social network requires unique content, how much time and resources do I need to participate?
4. What is the benefit of this network? Is there a monetary ROI or does it help my brand by making people happy?
Consider each of these points carefully, especially the questions in number four. If a network in question does not help your brand, or deliver money savings or revenue, then it probably isn’t worth your time. Evaluate, and make your decisions on social strategy based on what’s right for your hotel.