As a hotelier, you’ll already know how important social media is for your business – but did you know that influencer marketing can be too?
NB: This is an article from Preno
Years ago, consumers would make decisions based on what they’d see on TV, or read in a magazine. Now more people are turning to social media. A recent study done by Edelman, a global communications firm, found that 63% of the people they polled between the ages of 18-34 trusted influencers over advertising created by brands. This is because they seem to be more down-to-earth and relatable – especially to younger audiences.
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What does this mean for hoteliers?
Hoteliers can leverage the power of influencer marketing to reach a larger audience and gain more leads. This can be done through collaborations and paid partnerships. By partnering with an influencer, hotels can get their brand in front of potential guests who may not be aware of the property otherwise. Influencers can also help to boost bookings by promoting special rates or packages on their channels. When done correctly, influencer marketing can be a very cost-effective way to generate money for your hotel.
What is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing that involves working with individuals who have a large following on social media to promote your hotel or brand. These influencers can help you reach a new audience and generate more leads.
Influencers use a variety of different platforms to grow their audiences. Some use blogs or Youtube to host their content, while others use social media such as Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Tiktok.
Why use influencers to market your hotel?
As a hotel owner, you know that online travel agencies (OTAs) have taken over the market. To compete with OTAs, hotels need to leverage the power of social media and create an influencer marketing strategy. By working with social media influencers, hotels can reach a larger audience, build brand awareness and generate more leads.
Influencer marketing is built on authenticity.
Many of them have spent years taking their viewers on their life journeys. They share everything online, from travel experiences and beauty products they love, to personal issues that people wouldn’t often mention publically. They tend to treat their audiences like a friend, and in return, they cultivate a very loyal and engaged following.
When an authority figure, such as an influencer, shares their enjoyable stay at your hotel, it encourages guests to book. This is because it’s easy for viewers to trust that their own experience at your hotel will be the same. This is why influencer marketing has grown exponentially in recent years – audiences seek their opinion before doing their own research.
Not only do they provide a way for hotels to sell their experiences, but they can be incredibly cost-effective.
Influencers have the tools and skills to take beautiful, compelling professional photos. This is because they often have the same camera equipment as professional photographers and know how to capture what their followers (and potential guests) want to see. This is, after all, what they’ve used to grow their following in the first place. If negotiated beforehand, you can also use this photography to grow your own social media platforms and create a cohesive feed.
Influencers can also provide hotels with valuable analytics.
Every post can be broken down by engagement, location and age group. This information can help hoteliers better understand their target market online, and what types of content are resonating with guests. This also includes insights into which platforms are most effective for reaching your target market, as many utilise multiple different platforms to share content. This enables hoteliers to focus their time and energy on the content and platforms that provide the most return on investment. It’s also great because most traditional media outlets can’t collect these insights so accurately.
Influencers are essentially a one-stop marketing machine that businesses can access for a fraction of the cost.
How to find the right influencers for your hotel?
The first step in finding the right influencers for your hotel is figuring out what type of influencer you are looking for. Do you want someone who can help promote your property to potential guests on social media? Or do you need someone with a large following who can drive traffic to your website? Once you know what type of influencer you are looking for, you can start your search.
There are several ways to find potential influencers for your hotel. One great way is to use social media monitoring tools like Hootsuite Insights or Mention. These tools can help you see who is talking about your hotel and what type of influence they have. Another way is to use a tool like BuzzSumo, which allows you to search for influencers based on topic or keyword. You can also use Google search results to find relevant bloggers and social media users who have a large following.
There are five types of influencers to look out for:
- Mega-influencers: 1M+ ( celebrities)
- Macro-influencers: 500K-1M followers.
- Mid-tier influencers: 50K-500K followers.
- Micro-influencers: 10K-50K followers.
- Nano-influencers: 1K-10K followers.
When researching influencers, you’ll also want to keep in mind the budget you have allocated for this campaign. Those with a highly engaged audience or a larger following will charge more. Don’t let a small budget deter you from reaching out though, as many will adjust their rates depending on the deliverables you require, and the contra you can provide them (e.g. a free stay at your accommodation).