Social Media SOS, tips for survival
Everyone gets overwhelmed with social media creating and posting, and it can be a really inefficient way for your staff to use their time. Put together a strategy so you have direction and purpose to your posts, and make sure everyone involved knows the brand guidelines and ethos. Using social media to promote hostels can be a powerful tool to reach a wide audience and engage with potential guests. Here are some of our health tips to effectively leverage social media for hostel promotion and focus your energies better.
Identify your target audience
Understand your target market and tailor your social media content to appeal to their interests and preferences. You may think you know your customers but do some analysis and research on where they are coming from, what they are looking for, and how they found you. This will help you create engaging and relevant posts that resonate with potential guests. If guests feel a connection with your brand they are more likely to recommend you and come again.
Create captivating visuals
Visual content is key on social media platforms, and has the benefit of breaking through language barriers. Capture high-quality photos and videos of your hostel’s amenities, common areas, and unique features to showcase the experience guests can expect. Show your team, show behind the scenes, give a sense of what it feels like to stay there. Use visually appealing graphics and branding elements to maintain a consistent and eye-catching presence. You only have a few seconds of their attention so make it count! Keep videos to snack bites under 1 minute and curate meaningful content that tells a story.
Engage with your audience
Welcoming, friendly, helpful – all the things your team at reception is should be replicated in your interactions. Social media as a tool is all about building relationships with your guests. Respond to comments, messages, and reviews quickly and in friendly manner. Encourage guests to share their experiences by tagging your hostel and using specific hashtags. User-generated content is a powerful tool for promoting your hostel organically!
Share compelling stories
Sharing is caring! Use social media platforms to share interesting stories, testimonials, and experiences from guests who have stayed at your hostel. This helps create a sense of authenticity and can inspire others to choose your hostel for their next trip. We all get tired of being told about storytelling, but it really is about making your guest connect with your brand, your story, and being able to see themselves having a good time at your hostel. Make it interesting, show what the actual experience in your hostel is like, and be authentic! It’s better for guests to know you are a good match for each other and manage expectations.
Offer exclusive promotions and discounts
Use social media to announce special promotions, discounts, or packages. Create a sense of loyalty from your existing guest client base while also creating a push by setting a limited time frame or limited availability for these offers. This gets people moving. Encourage and incentivise your users to share the promotions with their friends and networks, expanding your reach organically. The more eyes on your page, the more potential customers you can reach.
Collaborate with influencers and travel bloggers
Partner with influencers and travel bloggers who align with your hostel’s brand and target audience. These don’t have to be the biggest influencers out there, you are better finding micro-influencers who have the same ethos as your brand and will tell your story in their own way but still authentic to your brand positioning. This is especially relevant if you have a target audience that isn’t mostly English speaking and can reach a new target audience or your domestic audience. They can create content, share their experiences, and promote your hostel to their followers, increasing your visibility and credibility.
Leverage user-generated content
User-generated content (UGC) is the most useful content for your hostel but also the most risky. It is free, there is a lot of it, it is authentic, but it can also show all the things you don’t want it to. Since UGC is beyond your control, put a structure in place to monitor it if you need to be aware of any negative press, and also to find the positive stories to share. Encourage guests to share their photos and experiences on social media by displaying hashtags and creating desirable photo opportunities (hello photobooths…), and then repost and share their content with proper credit and permission. This not only adds authenticity to your social media presence but also helps to create a sense of community and encourages others to share their experiences as well. Plus they are showing you how they see your hostel, learn from the feedback.
Use targeted advertising
Utilise social media advertising tools, they are there to help and can target specific demographics, locations, and interests. This allows you to reach new potential guests who may be interested in staying at your hostel and can generate more visibility and bookings.
Monitor and analyze performance
Regularly review your social media analytics to understand which posts and campaigns perform well and which ones need improvement. Use this data to refine your social media strategy and create content that resonates with your audience.
Remember, consistency and creativity are key when using social media to promote your hostel. Engage with your audience, provide valuable content, and showcase the unique experience guests can expect at your hostel.