social media icons on a mobile phone reflecting their impact to drive hotel direct bookings

Are you a hotelier grappling with the burden of sky-high commission fees demanded by online travel agencies (OTAs)?

NB: This is an article from CartStack

OTAs may seem like a necessary evil to keep occupancy rates high, but don’t give up on direct bookings just yet. Luckily, we live in a day and age where social media exists, providing you constant access to a pool of billions of potential guests.

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Are you truly harnessing the full potential of social media in your digital marketing strategy, or is there more to be gained from this powerful tool?

With the right social media strategy in place, your hotel can reap the benefits of improved brand recognition and customer engagement – two crucial factors behind hotel direct bookings.

Unlike your website, social media allows you to directly engage with your ideal guests, through likes, comments and even direct messages. This direct communication removes barriers between your brand and the customer, which helps to create a sense of loyalty and trust.

However, building a successful social media marketing strategy requires an understanding of:

  1. Which platforms are right for your hotel and target audience?
  2. Who do you need to hire to get the job done, and done well?
  3. What are the key strategies for your marketing team to achieve success?

Throw into the mix the new focus on video content, particularly short-form video, and emerging platforms like TikTok, it is more important than ever for hoteliers to keep a pulse on social media marketing trends.

Why is Social Media Important for Hotels?

  • Connect with potential guests: Social media provides a direct channel to engage with new customers, showcase your hotel’s unique features, and build relationships.
  • Increase brand visibility: Social media platforms offer extensive reach, allowing you to expand your hotel’s online presence and attract a larger audience.
  • Drive traffic to your website: Through compelling content and strategic calls-to-action, social media can direct users to your hotel’s website, where they can make direct bookings.
  • Enhance guest experiences: By actively engaging with guests on social media, you can address their queries, provide personalized recommendations, and create a positive impression.
  • Influencer collaborations: Social media platforms enable partnerships with influencers and travel bloggers to showcase your hotel, reach new audiences, and generate direct bookings.

Best Social Media Platforms for Direct Bookings in 2023


While there have been predictions about the decline of Facebook as a social media platform, it continues to be useful for the hospitality industry for several reasons:

  • Massive User Base: Facebook’s user base consists of 2.96 billion people worldwide. Even if some users are reducing their activity on Facebook, the platform still provides access to a substantial number of active users.
  • Impressive Ad Targeting: With highly targeted advertising options on Facebook, you can reach specific demographics, interests, and locations. This precise targeting allows you to tailor your marketing messages to potential guests who are more likely to convert. It’s an effective way to increase brand awareness and drive bookings.
  • Impact and ROI: Facebook is still believed to be the best platform for generating sales, by 34% of marketers. This is thanks to Facebook’s in-depth analytics reporting and data, which you can leverage to refine your marketing strategies, identify trends, and measure the effectiveness of your campaigns.


Instagram is a highly visual platform, making it perfect for showcasing the visual appeal of your hotel properties. Instagram is hailed as the top platform for increasing exposure, as recognized by 76% of marketers. This is particularly crucial for hotels in their competition against large online travel agencies (OTAs).

  • Visual Storytelling: Through high-quality photos and videos, your marketing team can highlight your property’s stunning features. This visual storytelling helps create a captivating and immersive experience for potential guests, enticing them to book a stay.
  • Influencer Marketing: Instagram is where the modern idea of an “influencer” really took off, and remains a space where travel bloggers and content creators thrive. Collaborating with influencers who have a significant following and influence in the travel niche can greatly benefit your marketing efforts. Tap into an influencer’s engaged audience to gain exposure beyond your own marketing channels.
  • User-Generated Content: Instagram encourages user-generated content (UGC), where guests share their experiences and photos while staying at hotels. UGC is a powerful marketing tool as it provides authentic and relatable content that potential guests trust.

Read rest of the article at CartStack