The benefits of social media have been touted far and wide. But how valuable is social media marketing? What are the exact benefits and trends that the hospitality industry can benefit from? Travel technology website tnooz.com has created an infographic detailing the benefits and costs of social media marketing: here are a few of the highlights.
Let’s establish the background context. The transition of hotel services to online platforms has been swift and will only continue to grow. In 2000, 1% of travelers booked a hotel online. In 2010, over 50% used online bookings to make reservations. Furthermore, online bookings cost significantly less than traditional methods. Online travel agents costs totaled 2.5 billion in 2010; phone bookings costs about $6-$10 each; online booking costs about $2-$6 each.
The decisions process has drastically changed as a result of the online shift. 61% of internet users in the U.S. research travel online before purchasing, and 7 out of 10 consider reviews before making their purchases. The conclusion? Your hotel’s online social media presence matters. There are hundreds of opportunities through Facebook, Twitter, etc, to make a great, or a bad impression. Of the only 40% in hotels that enable social sharing, 12% saw an increase in page views over three months. In contrast, hotels without enabled social media sharing saw a 2% decrease in page views.
For social media, hospitality is the #2 industry for mobile engagement (behind retail). The bottom line? Travel and the hospitality industry have a unique opportunity to capitalize on social media marketing. A well executed social media marketing strategy can increase engagement with customers, gain exposure, garner great reviews, and drive increased reservations and revenue for the company.
What is your opinion of social media’s influence on the hotel industry? How have you incorporated social media into your marketing platforms? We’d love to hear from you!
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