By Kacey Bradley
Whether you're running the world's most successful business or one that's just starting out, you're going to have one problem in common with other business owners: marketing. You need good marketing to attract people and make money, but you need to have money to have good marketing. It's a tough situation to be in, but there are some ways to get yourself out on top that are actually catching on in popularity with the general public.
Brand ambassadors have become a more widely known way of advertising to gain customers. They're used by all different kinds of companies, and could prove to be a beneficial method of marketing to promote your hotel. Brand ambassadors are people who would stay at your hotel, have a great experience and want to promote you on their social media, without making you pay them a salary.
Interested in creating your own brand ambassadors to give your hotel business a liftoff into the world of success? First you have to consider what you can give them. Since they won't be making money from promoting you, you have to do everything you can to be approachable and shareable. Get ready to dive in to social media.
Make Shareable Content
The best way to get your ambassadors to get the news to others that your hotel is the best place to stay is through shareable content. Your job is to inform, and their job is to spread the news. Take some time to write articles about topics that'll make people read through them and want to share them on their social media pages.
These articles can be recommendations on what to look for in a good hotel, or tips on how to find the best prices for any budget. The goal is to make the reader feel more informed when they finish your article, without making them feel like you're trying to brainwash them into only knowing good information about your own hotel. The informed content should point them back to choosing your hotel on their own.
Create A Twitter-shpere
The biggest reason that brand ambassadors work so well is that they make everything seem personal. When people watch a commercial, they know what that company wants them to hear, but when a company teams up with brand ambassadors, potential customers feel like they're more a part of a community.
Reaching out on Twitter will help make your hotel seem personable. You can give a face and a voice to your business so customers feel like they have a relationship with where they stay. Create a Twitter for your hotel and encourage employees to follow it. Use a friendly voice to share your written content, and retweet positive tweets posted by employees. Your followers will begin to form loyalty to your brand, because they'll feel like they know you.
Keep An Instagram Scrapbook
Make an Instagram for your hotel and begin posting pictures of employees who deserve a shout out, or events you host in your building. Keeping a kind of Instagram scrapbook will help potential customers decide to stay with you because they'll be able to scroll through your images and see happy employees and good work that happens at your hotel.
You can also wrap existing customers in by hosting contests on Instagram. Encourage users to post about their experience with a specific hashtag, and create a prize for whoever posts the best picture with the most likes. People will get excited and tell their friends, creating a marketing wildfire for you while you focus on other strategies. Your hotel guests will turn into brand ambassadors without even knowing they're helping you with advertising.
Maintain Your Presence
No matter what specific marketing strategy you decide to go with in regards to your brand ambassadors, you'll need to keep up your social media presence long after it's brought you the marketing success you wanted originally. It'll help maintain the trust that customers and employees will put in your image and voice, and trust is key.
Research has shown that 92% of people trust referrals by individuals rather than becoming informed about a brand through a commercial. This is what makes having brand ambassadors such an important part of forming your brand. You'll need people to genuinely want to interact with you on social media and help promote you based on loyalty. Good reviews on other websites can only go so far.
Take some time in the near future to come up with a list of social media strategies you know could work for your hotel to begin creating a positive presence for yourself online. Make a friendly voice that feels personal for hotel guests, then help them get involved through things like shareable content and contests. You'll enjoy the experience of creating genuine brand loyalty almost as much as they will.