Hotel Facebook Pages: What’s the Point?
Hotel Chatter posted a rant about hotel Facebook pages the other day, and at first I found myself (reluctantly) agreeing. What is the point of a hotel Facebook page? I look high and low for inventive examples of hotels engaging guests, and I see mostly the same thing over and over.
Then I got to this:
“But it still doesn't help us understand the basic point of a hotel Facebook page. Is it just another way for fans to connect to the hotel? Are we better informed as travelers and prospective hotel guests? Are folks just bored at work and looking for something to click on?"
Is it just another way for fans to connect to the hotel? YES! Yes, it is! It’s all about connection. I prefer to see hotels being thoughtful about the way they connect, but that connection can be powerful. It can be a powerful means of giving guest promotions. It can be a powerful means of sharing destination information. It can be a powerful means of escape: I follow a hotel that posts photos from my very favorite vacation destination in Italy, and every so often one of those photos takes me back to that place for just a few minutes. Those moments are serene.
For a lot of hotels what has become the standard Facebook fare is working (photos, promotions, menus, etc.). Shangri-La Hotels (mentioned in the article above for posting amazing photos) gets an average of 3,000-4,000 LIKES when they post destination photos and 30-40 comments. The last deal they posted—for Singapore in case you were wondering—received 24,000 LIKES and 1,200 shares. That’s some impressive spread. That’s the point!
But what’s missing from the conversation entirely here is this: Facebook is a public means for a guest to directly reach the hotel—and a way for the hotel to respond directly and publicly to the guest. Reputation management in front of everyone and in a generally more authentic way than replies on review sites. There’s value in this.
And, yes, sometimes we’re just bored at work and looking for something to click on; it might as well be a photo from a place that makes you feel dreamy and inspires you to plan your next getaway, don’t you think?