Getting off-line guests online

Have you noticed how many of your regular guests are not following you on social media? Some of them might be on Facebook or Twitter without following you, others might have profiles, yet they don’t use it and some might even not have a profile on social media. How do you get off-line guests to follow and engage with you on social media?

Here are a few tips and ideas to think about and PLEASE feel free to share your experience and expertise on this topic – we are here to assist each other! 🙂

Create awareness that you are on Twitter and Pinterest by inviting guests to follow you on these platforms with a small gift like this:

Twitter and Pinterest Biscuits

Twitter and Pinterest Biscuits

Create professional notice cards with details like your Twitter handle, Facebook link, Pinterest link and Google+ name to encourage guests to follow you on certain social media platforms. This will definitely also encourage guests to Tweet about your establishment while they are there, as you provide them with information allowing them to tag you.

Consider having a television screen in the foyer, displaying your Twitter stream all day long. This creates transparency, guests will be able to see that you are active on Twitter and they might also be encouraged to Tweet something in order to see their own name on the screen.

Create social media contests and promote them in printed media. This will allow people who are not following you on social media to consider liking or following your profiles.

Add your social media links or at least just the social media logos to your printed collateral – this will create awareness among guests who fill out your questionnaires, read your information files in the rooms, etc.

On arrival, ask guests if they are on Twitter, request their Twitter handles and welcome them at your destination online too. This will make them feel even more special and they will most definitely follow you back!

Create unique hashtags for certain events at your destination and ask the event manager to remind guests to use the hashtag when Tweeting about the event. Also ensure that your Twitter handle is visible during the event for when people want to follow and tag your destination.

Do you have any additional ideas on how to get off-line guests online? Feel free to comment below.

For more on this topic, book a workshop with Travelling Mystery Guest and lets get all South Africa’s hospitality and tourism establishments social savvy!

Contact Renate de Villiers on 082 336 1562 or enquire@travellingmystery.co.za for more information.

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10 Tweeting Tips for Hotels

Tweeting for your hotel and using Twitter to your advantage might just make your guests return! Do not miss out on small opportunities on Twitter with these tips:

What is your Twitter handle?

What is your Twitter handle? (Image from http://www.digitaltrends.com)

  • Keep an eye on Tweets where your hotel’s name is mentioned and act on it. Did one of your guests tweet that they are busy preparing for a difficult meeting late at night and desperately craving chocolate? Why not surprise them with two or three homemade truffles from your in-house kitchen?
  • Studies show that 48% of brand followers mainly follow the brands in order to get discount. Have a look at who the followers are that regularly engage with your brand and offer them a discount voucher to the on-site spa or the restaurant.
  • Use Twitter to share nearby events and entertainment with your guests. If there is a band playing at the pub next door, share the ticket link on Twitter. This shows your guests that you are not focused on your brand only, but you take part and interact with your community.
  • Share links to your other social media platforms and blogs via Twitter, as well as current specials. Your followers will appreciate being first to know.
  • Retweet and respond. By doing this, you not only show that you are interested and you engage with your followers, but it also create more awareness for your brand and it might add some followers to your list.
  • Personalize your Twitter profile. People like to know who they are talking to. Add the name of your guest relations manager or your social media ambassador. The word “social” indicates interaction and therefore guests would prefer interacting with a person rather than the hotel. You may even consider putting a photo of the person on the profile.
  • Promote your Twitter profile wherever possible. Put your Twitter handle (the “@” symbol with your name which your followers use to tag you in their Tweets) up at the reception area, on your menus, and in other public areas in order to allow guests to follow you, Tweet about you and interact with your brand.

I’ve been to many establishments where I wanted to Tweet something about their great service, ambiance or my experience, only to find that they don’t give me the opportunity to find them on Twitter.” -Renate de Villiers, owner of Travelling Mystery Guest.

  • Be active on Twitter. This will increase awareness and it will build your reputation and trust. This also means that you need to interact. One Tweet per day is not going to cut it. Take part in discussions, start new discussions, share interesting things with your followers by tagging them and even try to take part in discussions with hash tags (#) that are trending.
  • Acknowledge retweets and mentions. This just shows your followers that you have noticed them, it will probably impress them and this might in event encourage them to retweet or mention you on a more regular basis.
  • Use keywords in your Tweets (words that will appear in searches) and also use only 120 characters in your Tweets in order to allow space for retweets (i.e. RT @TravellingMG)

Follow Travelling Mystery Guest on @TravellingMG and Renate de Villiers on @RenateTravel.

Happy Tweeting!

What makes a customer change?

Experts say that our customers are constantly changing. I suppose it is true, as customers are people and people change. But why? What makes customers change? Here are a few reasons for change:

Technology

Like we have different generations (Baby Boomers, Generation X and Y and more) we also have different technologies that the generations are comfortable with. Some parts of certain generations adapt, others not. They say generation Y is the Twitter generation. Boy, would I like to see my mother Tweet! It’s two different generations growing up with different technological habits. For many of our parents television was a luxury. Today we stay up to date with news via Twitter. It’s quicker, allowing for a faster pace and more knowledge on a wider variety of subjects, which means our customers want faster service and are more educated than ever with a pace that increases daily.

Life stages

Loyal customers, those people who return time and again, also change. We need to be sure to change with them in order to keep them loyal. A teenager who came to drink a milkshake at your restaurant close to the university will become a student who would like to enjoy a beer at the same spot a few years from now. It’s about getting to know your customers and giving them special attention. The guy who attended a party at your establishment yesterday might bring his wife and children to your restaurant a year from now. It’s about remembering.

Social Responsibility

Customers are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of social responsibility. If they can be part of your initiatives toward having an impact on your community, they might support you even more.

Green considerations

More and more travellers prefer to stay at hotels and guesthouses that take their environmental responsibility seriously. Do you?

Environmental Responsibility

Environmental Responsibility

Previous experiences and expectations

People experience things and then set a certain standard with which they are comfortable. They also hear about places and attractions from friends, which creates a certain expectation. Be sure to live up to that!

Increased health requirements

There has been a tremendous increase in food related illnesses and allergies. We need to be aware of these things and cater for them too.

Economy changes

This one I don’t even have to mention, because we all know what it takes to keep afloat in trying times. Our customers feel the same. We need to be willing to amend and change with them to show them that we care and we understand. We need to learn to put our customers first – even when it comes to financial stability. They are the ones who will keep your business alive if they feel that they matter.

Travelling Mystery Guest offers workshops on customer service, the customer’s journey and more. For bookings, contact Renate de Villiers on enquire@travellingmystery.co.za / 079 110 5674.