​Social media for hotels should be a conversation between your hotel and your past, current and future guests. Many companies make the mistake of using social media as one-way communication. Instead, you want to use social media for two-way interaction with your guests. Consider these choices for a better social media and hotel experience.

Promote the “Extras”

Do you offer a special service that neighboring properties don’t? What makes your property different from other local properties or properties with a similar price point?

Highlight them on social media!

Your content on social media shouldn’t be full of “Buy This!” posts. You want to let people know what you have to offer without bombarding them with sales messaging. For the extras, this simply means showcasing what you have without linking it to a promo.

Let’s use a free breakfast as an option. You could create a post like, “Book today and breakfast is included!” Or you could create a post like, “The smell of coffee, warm biscuits and made-to-order eggs from the free breakfast is making me hungry! What’s your favorite breakfast food?

The second post highlighted an extra, painted a picture of the experience a guest could have with the extra and didn’t ask for a direct sale. With the question at the end, it can also promote engagement with your page. If you get a large enough response, it can also help you adapt your breakfast offerings to your ideal guests! That’s a lot of work in under 25 words!

Promote Your Staff

More and more travelers put an emphasis on experience when they travel. They want more than a place to sleep. They want an experience that made their trip better and a good place to sleep. Their experience is directly linked to your staff.

You don’t need to host an in-depth interview or write a sales pitch for your front desk worker. All you want to do is show your property is run by people who care about a guest’s experience. Your guests can get to know, like and trust your property before they arrive.

Always ask permission from your staff to highlight them on social media. You can position it as a reward, such as for people voted top worker in a month. Or, you can ask for volunteers. Millennials are more used to social media and sharing regularly, so they might jump at the chance. If you don’t get volunteers and still want to try this option, link appearing on social media for the hotel to an incentive, such as gift certificates.

Increase Direct Bookings

Of course, you can also host discount codes or sales on social media. Limit posts like these to fewer than 20% of your content. There’s no incentive for someone to regularly check a page or account that only holds discount codes.

The key to this approach is linking any promotion to a single option for booking. For example, you want to promote more mid-week bookings. The post should have a message such as “Take a break from your busy schedule! Stay with us during the week and receive a 30% discount.

The post should be clickable from social media. Hotels direct the guest to a page where they can only book a particular room type during the valid days. This won’t turn people away. Instead, it creates a highly personalized experience where the guest receives the exact experience they expect. The more steps and choices they have to make, the more likely they are to abandon the booking.

When using social media as a promotion tool, don't forget to track metrics!

Social media is a valuable tool for the hotel industry. When used correctly, it can raise awareness of your property and encourage your guests to return.

Want more ideas on how to raise awareness of your property? Check out these top 5 blog posts for hotels.

How do​ you use social media for your hotel? Share in the comments.

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