In the ever-changing social media landscape, it is always important to stay on top of the latest trends. The second you look away from your feed, a new hashtag appears, a news story has splashed the pages, or a meme has become outdated. Being at the forefront of what is new enables you to keep your hotel’s content fresh, keep your followers entertained, and hopefully, encourage engagement.
What is trending on social is always different, depending on the second you decide to check-in. Luckily, what is trending in how you use social media tends to stay constant – for at least a few months (so keep reading before we launch into 2021 faster than you can blink)! While over the years we have waved goodbye to sites like MySpace and AIM, networks like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter continue to gain new users, new content, and higher engagement, further driving people to utilize them – even more often than they check their email. Want to keep eyes glued to your accounts? Discover the latest trends with us, from continuing crazes to new gems.
If there is one thing that we have seen year over year, month over month, it is that video content has been consistently performing well across channels. Think about it: if your friend is showing you something exciting about a place you are traveling to, would you rather read a long post or watch an enticing video?
Luckily, creating content that your potential guests may find engaging can mean simply taking videos of what is happening on-site, like creating a new drink or a short tour of the hotel pool and other fun amenities. Additionally, if you do not have the resources to create your own content, you can share relevant content that you find from local area attractions, CVBs, and even recent guests to keep up with this evergreen trend.
Instagram Removes Likes
In an effort to keep the community positive, Instagram is slowly rolling out the removal of Likes from their platform. You may have experienced this already, but instead of seeing a number of Likes under your posts, you will simply be able to see WHO liked your posts instead of a number. Instead of comparing how many Likes one post got to another, you can view content without the competitive factor.
All this to say that, hopefully, this will foster a more community-driven and positive environment. How does this affect hoteliers? Social media is growing even more into a pay-to-play landscape, and running paid ads on Instagram will ensure that your posts are seen even when you are not able to quantify the number of likes a post receives. On the organic end, you can strategically include hashtags within your posts to ensure that they are receiving maximum reach regardless of whether you can see how many likes they earn.
If you do not yet understand the full scope of Instagram ads, the Blue Magnet Social Media team is ready to help you do so. Beyond ads, another useful way to promote your hotel is through partnering with an influencer. Influencers will have a much wider united reach than your hotel alone, and can use this to encourage visits to stay here, promote initiatives, and so much more. Not only can you partner with influencers to promote your hotel and help it shine, you can work with as many or as few as you like depending on budget to better suit your needs.
Working with influencers can be simple: ask a past guest of yours who has high engagement if you may share a post of theirs mentioning your hotel with your audience. Or, conduct your own research to discover relevant influencers in your local area who would be a good pairing with the typical guest that you receive. For example: there is a big marathon coming up, and you would like to attract more stays at your hotel for this event. You can reach out to a local influencer, who posts fitness and running related content, to see if they would like to stay at your hotel in exchange for posting about it for their followers to see.
Demand for Speedy Customer Service
Customer service is certainly not a new trend, but the way that you engage online always changing. Guests expect a shorter response time than ever, and in 2020, it will be important as ever to be on top of comments and reviews. Keeping up with each negative comment by responding to them as soon as possible can show future guests how quickly that they are likely to experience customer service on-site, and show potential guests what kind of response they can expect to see. In the coming decade, guests are likely to expect even shorter response times than usual with continuing technology improvements and AI.
To keep up with your customers, be sure to check in on each social media and review channel that you manage at least once a day, so that you have time to formulate a fitting response. Create reminders for yourself to check in on each channel, if you do have many to look at. Ensure that your responses are said in a manner that reflects how you would want to be treated as a guest: make them feel heard, respected, and make them want to come back to your hotel again for a better experience.
User Generated Content
A trend that we are delighted to see carrying over to the new decade, finding User Generated Content, or UGC, is quite simple to do for even a social media newbie. UGC includes images and videos that have been shared to various social networks by their users, and can be found a few ways. You can look at your notifications to see whether there are new photos that have been shared, check the geotag for your property on Instagram, or even prompt your guests to share images from their stay with an enticing caption, like “What is your favorite view in our hotel?” or “What is your favorite memory while staying here?” Just be sure to credit the original poster in your content.
To 2020, and Beyond
With how often trends are changing in marketing, we expect to see even more exciting things to come in 2021! It is important to be cognizant of not only what is changing in social media, but in other areas of the marketing world as well, and these are always top of mind for the Blue Magnet team. Wondering what other trends to look out for, or want to know about one that we covered? Just reach out, and we are happy to help you understand what is trending.