Social Media Marketing Strategy For Hotels: 11 Best Practices

Bryan Michalis
Bryan Michalis
Updated
November 20, 2023
/
Published
November 20, 2023
Social Media Marketing Strategy For Hotels: 11 Best Practices

Chances are, most of your guests — past, present and future — are on social media. It’s likely that a percentage of them are scrolling, chatting or searching for inspiration as we speak. And because of this, social media is a vital channel for any hotel looking to stand out in a crowded marketplace.

But your social media marketing strategy won’t be effective without the right strategies in place. Are you picking the right platforms for your business? Are you sharing the right content? There’s a lot to consider when it comes to creating a strategy that works. So, let's dive in!

Why Social Media Marketing is a Must for Hotels

Globally, we spend an average of 2 hours and 28 minutes per day on social media, talking to friends and family, engaging with colleagues and watching TikTok reels for hours on end.

Seventy-seven percent of U.S. Americans have a social media profile. And according to a recent study by MGH, platforms like TikTok are having a growing impact on the travel and tourism industry. Sixty percent of travelers say they have become inspired to visit a new destination after seeing a TikTok video about it.

This makes it the perfect place for you to capture the attention of potential guests. As a hotel, you aim to show users why your property is the place to be and what you can provide that other hotels can’t —in other words, your unique selling points.

Girl with phone doing social media

Many people seach online for hotels on their phones

The power of social media marketing for hotels

Social media marketing enables you to expand your brand awareness, maximize bookings and bring in revenue. This marketing strategy also has unique characteristics and challenges that distinguish it from marketing in other industries, such as:

     
  • Visual appeal: Good quality visuals are critical when it comes to attracting customers. Stunning images and videos of accommodations, amenities and local attractions help entice potential guests.
  •  
  • Seasonal marketing: The dynamic nature of the hotel industry requires adaptable marketing strategies and social media can help you switch things up when needed.
  •  
  • User-generated content: User-generated content—encouraging guests to share their experiences and photos—can provide authentic and persuasive content for social media.

11 Effective Social Media Marketing Strategies for Hotels

Your social media marketing success hinges on your approach. How well do you understand the different platforms available to you and your audience? Let’s look at the marketing strategies you can use to create a buzz and attract more guests to your property:

1. Identify Your Target Audience

The first question you’ll need to ask yourself is: who am I targeting? The answer to this question could mean the difference between success and failure.

And the differences in demographics can be significant: According to Hootsuite, men between 55-64 are least likely to use social media whereas women aged 16-24 are most likely.

Perhaps you’re a beautiful lakeside property, perfect for couples and weddings. Or, maybe you’re located conveniently close to a major airport and welcome a lot of business travelers.

Look at demographic information such as age, gender, country of origin, income level and travel purpose. This audience insight will help you choose the right platforms and develop the best content for your ideal guests.

2. Define Your Hotel’s Brand and Unique Selling Points

When you understand who your audience is, you’ll have a good grasp of your unique selling points (USPs). Defining your brand and USPs for social media marketing is vital as it will increase the chances of appealing to your audience.

Let’s say you’re a golf resort targeting mainly golf fanatics looking for a weekend of walking up and down a course with their buddies. Your main USP, unsurprisingly, is your golf course.

But your audience will also want to know how they can relax after a long day out on the course. Think about curating content about your spa and gym facilities, or your on-site restaurants.

3. Choose the Right Social Media Platforms for Your Hotel's Marketing Strategy

Understanding the demographics of these social media platforms and what kind of content is commonly shared will help you pick the right one for your business.

Facebook, for example, attracts a wide range of users. The largest age group on the site is between the ages of 25-34. And interestingly, users above the age of 65 are the fastest-growing age group on the site.

Now let’s compare this information to TikTok: Thirty-nine percent of the platform’s users are between the ages of 18-24. In comparison, 60% of LinkedIn’s users are between the ages of 25-34.

By understanding demographic information like this, you can see how well a platform matches up to your hotel’s demographics. A hostel that attracts younger travelers may see more success on TikTok, whereas an airport hotel that attracts business travelers may find LinkedIn a better fit.

4. Use High-Quality Photos and Videos

The quality of your photo and video content is vital, especially on platforms like Instagram or TikTok, where visual content is king. According to Zippia, hotels see a 15% increase in conversion rates when they include high-quality photos on their websites.

Including images in your social media posts leads to a leap in engagement. According to a Statista survey, 66% of respondents said that videos were the most engaging type of content on social media, followed by images (61%).

The good news is that the options are endless when it comes to choosing what kind of photos and videos you’d like to share. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

     
  • Show your human side with behind-the-scenes reels of your kitchen or front desk staff.
  •  
  • Do you have a kitchen garden? Share gardening content! Show users how to prune rose bushes or come fall, share images of your pumpkins.
  •  
  • Give your followers a taste of your menu with enticing images of the best dishes available.

5. Know Your Audience

When you know what matters most to your audience, thinking up useful, fun and unique content comes easier. What will your followers gain by following you? Perhaps they’ll learn new skills or discover tips and recommendations in your city.

Here are a few ideas based on different types of travelers:

     
  • Leisure traveler: This individual might want to know about the best restaurants, coffee shops and tourist hot spots in town. Create an engaging top-five series where you divulge the best five spots in your city.
  •  
  • Event planner: Planners want to know what your property could offer their attendees. Share images of your event space, footage of previous events or testimonials from your event planner clients.
  •  
  • Corporate travel manager: These professionals are on the lookout for hotels that cater well to business travelers. Share images and videos of your co-working spaces and in-room workspaces.

6. Build User-Generated Content and Reviews to Enhance Your Hotel’s Online Reputation

User-generated content is where guests share images and videos of their stay at your hotel. They may tag you or include a hashtag specific to your business and include a review. This type of social media marketing helps you expand your brand recognition without having to do the heavy lifting.

People are 3.9 times more likely to book a hotel with high ratings. They’re also willing to pay more for it. And only 22% of hotel guests will leave a review of their own accord. But should a hotel request a review, that figure shoots up to 80%.

Find ways to entice guests into leaving reviews on social media. For example, leave strategically placed signs around your hotel, asking guests to tag you in posts and use your hashtag.

Want to increase your Google and TripAdvisor reviews by up to 350%? Canary automatically guides your guests to leave a review on third-party platforms through a brief, customizable survey at check-out. Demo Canary Contactless Checkout to learn more.

7. Optimize Your Posting Times for Maximum Reach in Hotel Social Media Marketing

Posting at the right times will maximize your engagement and ensure your effort isn’t in vain. Optimal social media posting times differ by platform but here’s a basic guide from SproutSocial:

Weekdays

     
  • Mondays: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
  •  
  • Tuesdays: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
  •  
  • Wednesdays: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
  •  
  • Thursdays: 9 a.m.-noon and 2 p.m.
  •  
  • Fridays: 9 a.m.- 11a.m.

Now, let’s look at the best times for specific social media platforms:

Facebook

     
  • Wednesday: 3 p.m.
  •  
  • Thursday & Friday: 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
  •  
  • Saturday & Sunday: 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
  •  
  • Best days to post: Monday to Thursday
  •  
  • Worst day to post: Sunday

Instagram

     
  • The entire week – 6 a.m. - 9 a.m., 12 p.m. - 2p.m., and 5p.m. - 6p.m.
  •  
  • Best days to post: Tuesdays and Wednesdays
  •  
  • Worst days to post: Sundays

TikTok

     
  • Friday: 5 a.m. and 1p.m. - 3 p.m.
  •  
  • Best days to post: Tuesdays and Wednesdays
  •  
  • Worst days to post: Sundays

YouTube

     
  • Any weekday between 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

LinkedIn Company Pages

     
  • Tuesdays between 10 a.m. - 11 a.m.
  •  
  • Workdays between 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m., 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. - 6 p.m.
  •  
  • Best days to post: Tuesdays through Thursdays
  •  
  • Worst days to post: Weekends

X (formerly Twitter)

     
  • Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  •  
  • Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  •  
  • Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  •  
  • Fridays 9 a.m. to noon
  •  
  • Best days to post: Tuesdays through Thursdays
  •  
  • Worst days to post: Sundays

8. Collaborate with Travel Influencers for Increased Visibility of Your Hotel

Travel influencers explore the globe, check into hotels of all kinds and share their experiences for the world to see. And according to American Express, 75% of travelers say that they have been inspired to travel to a certain destination by social media. In addition, 67% of marketers plan to spend more on influencer marketing campaigns in 2023.

So, what if you could work with a travel influencer, get them to stay in your hotel and sing your praises? Finding travel influencers you’d like to work with might mean digging around on social media and finding out who your competitors are working with.

Once you have a list of candidates, your next step is to reach out! You can do this over email or social media. But make it clear that the arrangement will be mutually beneficial and decide how they’ll be compensated.

9. Engage with your followers to Foster a Strong Hotel Community Online

It may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised by how many brands post content but don’t engage with their audience on social media. Engagement matters. It helps you get discovered, enhances your guest experience and turns your online presence into a personality.

In fact, Facebook uses “meaningful engagement” as a way to determine which content to prioritize. In other words, their algorithm chooses to boost content that is engaged with most.

But what do we mean by engagement? Here are a few ways you can engage with your followers:

     
  • Like and favorite comments
  •  
  • Reply to comments and posts
  •  
  • Reshares or tagging partners and guests (with their consent)
  •  
  • Mention specific followers in reshares

10. Don’t Forget to Measure Your Success

The best way to understand if social media is working is to analyze your performance. How did your posts do this month compared to last? What about this year compared to last year?

You’ll also need to define what success looks like for your hotel. Is it more bookings or more followers, for example? Here are a few metrics you can track:

     
  • Follower growth
  •  
  • Engagement metrics (likes, shares, comments)
  •  
  • Reach and impressions
  •  
  • Conversion rate
  •  
  • Click-through-rate (CTR)

You can track your performance manually, by looking at likes, favorites, shares etc., but consider using specialized tools like HubSpot or SproutSocial. Remember that social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook and TikTok provide analytics tools, so utilize those.

11. Tell a Compelling Story Through Your Hotel’s Social Media Channels

Storytelling helps you drive success on social media. This means telling the story of your brand, how you originated, anecdotes from the day-to-day and your values. Storytelling helps you make connections and entices your audience to follow your account.

Here are a few storytelling ideas for social media:

     
  • Background. If your property has an interesting history, your followers likely want to hear about it! Share anecdotes about the hotel's past, including any famous guests or significant events that have taken place there. Bonus points if you’ve got a ghost story or two.
  •  
  • Guest experiences. Share stories and experiences of past guests. This can include testimonials, photos and even video interviews where guests talk about their stay.
  •  
  • Campaigns. Create themed storytelling campaigns that revolve around a specific concept or narrative. Create a "Week of Wellness" campaign, for example, and share stories about wellness activities, healthy dining and guest experiences focused on well-being.

Effective Social Media Marketing Strategies for Hotels Infographic

Attract Guests and Build Brand Awareness with These Social Media Marketing Strategy Tips

Social media is an extension of your physical brand. This means your hotel’s social media marketing strategies should reflect your values, aesthetics and personality. Getting these strategies right will lead to an  enhanced online presence, and, best of all, more bookings.

Learn How Canary Can Help Your Properties Thrive

25 Hotel Payment Options to Offer Guests More Flexibility

25 Hotel Payment Options to Offer Guests More Flexibility

For hoteliers, staying up to date with what’s happening in hotel payments is crucial. Knowing what payment methods are available is key to modern guest experiences.

Read More
The 17 Hotel Reports You Absolutely Need to Put Your Business Ahead

The 17 Hotel Reports You Absolutely Need to Put Your Business Ahead

Let's dive into a list of reports that every hotel needs, what each report tracks and how to organize your metrics. Just remember: successful reporting is dynamic.

Read More
20 Hotel Sales Strategies to Effectively Increase Revenue

20 Hotel Sales Strategies to Effectively Increase Revenue

Boost your hotel's revenue with 20 proven hotel sales strategies, from upsells to mobile trends. Stay ahead in hospitality's dynamic landscape!

Read More
Use of AI in the Hospitality Industry: 12 Practical Examples

Use of AI in the Hospitality Industry: 12 Practical Examples

AI is only in its early stages and it’s hard to know what may come next. As the technology develops, new examples of AI in hospitality are emerging and it's time to consider them.

Read More
7 Key Advantages of AI in Hotels

7 Key Advantages of AI in Hotels

When testing and comparing the latest AI developments, it’s more important to prioritize what makes sense for your hotel. First step: define your most important criteria.

Read More
Click “Accept All” to store basic cookies on your device that enhance site functionality. View our Privacy Policy for more information. You can also block all in the preference center.

Privacy Preference Center

By using this website, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation and analyze site usage. View our Privacy Policy for more information.