Dear Hotels: This is Your Facebook Wake-Up Call
Facebook has over 800 million active users and continues to grow at an incredible rate of approximately 7 new users per second (as of Jan 2012). To put that into perspective, there are more active users on Facebook today than were using the internet worldwide in 2004, the same year Facebook was founded. Approximately 120 new people have signed up on Facebook while you’ve been reading this paragraph.
Facebook is the #1 social media site in the world and the second most visited site on the internet. 1 in 9 people on Earth now have a Facebook account and 1 in 8 minutes on the Internet is spent on Facebook.
And contrary to popular belief, Facebook use isn’t just limited to younger demographics. People aged 25+ represent the fastest growing Facebook demographic, and in the US alone, almost half of Facebook’s current user base is age 26-64.
Consumers have gotten better and better at ignoring marketing messages. Instead, they visit Google and social networks like Facebook to find and share information.
The question for you is: will you be there when people come looking for you?
Whether you agree with the idea of social media or not, millions of people around the globe use social networks everyday. If you own a business, social media literacy is a must.
- Go Where Your Customers Already Are - get found by people who are searching for your products and services.
- Facebook is Today’s PR - a Fan Page is a medium/publication to write & share copy, engage readers (Fans), and promote your brand & other content to potential customers.
- Grow Referrals - 1 in 3 guests first become aware of a hotel through referrals from friends and family, and Facebook fans are more likely to buy your products and services and recommend them to friends.
- Generate Leads for Your Business - an active, consistent presence on Facebook over time will help to drive high quality traffic to your website and improve your overall search rankings on Google and Bing. Fan engagement tactics can also increase email database growth.
- Drive Sales - Facebook won’t increase your sales overnight, but it is possible to generate exposure and nurture relationships, which will in turn lead to increased revenue and profits.
- Viral Growth - Fan growth on Facebook is viral. Every action a fan takes on your page - liking, commenting, sharing, and tagging - is shared in their newsfeed with all of their friends to see.
- Inexpensive - Because of the newness of this medium, it is still relatively inexpensive compared to other forms of online and offline advertising. You get maximum exposure for limited expenditure.
Why You Need Seasmoke
Can you create and manage your own Facebook page? Absolutely. But can you create and manage a professional, branded, customized page? Well, that depends on you.
Consider the following:
- Stay on Top of Trends - Facebook is ever evolving, with new features introduced regularly. Yes, most of this information can be found online, but do you and your staff have the time to look for it and consistently stay on top of emerging trends?
- Maintain Your Competitive Edge - Maybe you’re not into social media, maybe you simply feel daunted by it, or maybe you already dabble in it. But if you willingly choose to ignore it or not realize it to its fullest potential, you will give your rivals the competitive edge. Can you afford to do that?
- You’re Not a Web Designer - Today, if your Facebook page does not have a decent design, you are no longer interesting to anyone. You hired a professional to design and build your website, so why wouldn’t you take the same care with your “mini website” (a.k.a. Facebook Page)?
- Facebook is Not the Yellow Pages – Don’t let your Facebook page just sit there stagnant, “yellow paging” it. If you build it, “they” won’t necessarily come. Along with all of your other responsibilities, can you realistically commit to regular, ongoing interactions and updates that will engage fans and drive growth?