Social Customer Care IRL: JetBlue Uses Social Media for Customer Service, Marketing and All-Around Good

Ann Handley TweetAnn Handley, Author and Chef Content Office at MarketingProf, recently penned an article about leaving a signed copy of her latest read, Show Your Work, on a JetBlue plane after a flight to Philadelphia.

Spoiler alert: She is reunited with said book.

Why does this matter?

Well, Handley details the events that led to getting her book back and the story is one that should serve as an example to businesses on social media.

(Hint: It all started with a tweet, venting her frustration about losing her Austin Kleon’s book.)

What we love about the post is Handley’s analysis of how JetBlue’s use social media, and social media as a whole, is no longer just a marketing or just customer service tool, but really both.

The biggest take away, though, has to be the basic yet essential sentiment every business on social media — especially those in the travel industry –  should know and live by in order to extend the type of customer care their consumers (and the general public) want and need. And that is:

“Make social the central nervous system, not just the face.”

With the increasing use of social media as the front line of customer service, the division between social media as a marketing tool and your business’s customer service department no longer exists. Social media has become the way millennials, travelers, and connected individuals alike wish to reach out to share their praise, questions, like or dislike for your company, product or service. To survive, and in order to ever thrive, businesses need to be tuned into these conversations at all times, on all levels in order to deliver a high caliber of customer service satisfaction and maintain a positive online reputation to match.

Give Handley’s article a read here.

What resonates with you from her article? Does it change your company’s approach to social?

Panda & Penguin – What’s the difference and why does it matter?

Panda v Penguin

SEO Manager Mary Jo Caruso explains Google’s Panda & Penguin algorithms, their differences, why they matter and how they impact your hotel’s website.

Do you remember when you were in school and the teacher would give you catchy phrases to learn different grammar and spelling rules such as, “i before e, except after c”?  Well, there is no “catchy” phrase for Panda & Penguin, but hopefully, you will understand the difference and a way to remember them soon:

Panda 4.1 was rolled out on in September 2014 and Google rolled out a new Penguin update in October 2014. This is the first Penguin update in over a year.

What does that mean? What’s the difference between Panda & Penguin? How does this affect my hotel?

Differentiating between Panda and Penguin

Pandas originate in China – which is a very large land mass. When you think of Panda, think of your content – the largest pieces of your website.

Penguins travel together and you will often see them waddling in videos and images. Think of Penguin as the individual links to and from your website.

So now that you know the difference between them, let’s dive into how they help or hurt your hotel.

Hotel Content Marketing & Panda

You’ve just written a fantastic piece of content for your hotel website. You’re excited to get it out to your audience and just know it will help increase your bookings, get more newsletter signups or add value to your hotel brand.

Think of your hotel content as a first edition novel. While many editions can be published over time, they become less valuable than the original. Let’s take a closer look at Panda penalties and how that affects your content.

Google crawls your site and sees you have:

  • New Content – check
  • Websites linking to it – check
  • Is it unique?  Can it be found on thousands of other websites? Is it valuable to your audience or industry?

All of these factors contribute to whether Panda rewards or penalizes you in the search engines results.

Hotel Link Building & Penguin

The same thing can be said for your hotel link building efforts. Did you buy text links because you thought they were the “quick and easy” way to rank in the search engines?  Do you link to sites that are considered quality websites? What type of sites link back to yours?  Are they only directory or article sites? Some people (misguidedly) think having a high number of back links automatically boosts your search engine rankings.  It’s not about quantity, but quality. You don’t want this to happen to your link building efforts.

Panda & Penguin – How They Affect Your Hotel Search Engine Rankings

By now, you have probably figured out that creating unique, entertaining content and getting the content linked by valuable sources plays a significant part in your hotel search engine ranking results (SERPs).  Think about the following two questions when creating and sharing new content on your site:

  • Is my content really unique and engaging?
  • Will quality websites want to link to or share my content?

These are the two questions Google asks (along with a million other algorithm questions) when they look at your website and determine if you will be affected adversely by Panda (content) or Penguin (link) updates. If you have been patient and done a good job in both your content and your link building efforts, you might just find your reward in higher search engine rankings over time.

For more on how your hotel or brand can incorporate unique, quality content on your websites, contact Lodging Interactive.

Back to Basics: Hotel Search Engine Marketing – Part 3

Lodging Interactive’s Senior Analytics & PPC Manager, Gouri Karode, is sharing the essential best practices for hotel search engine marketing in our Back to Basics three-part series.

Read Part 1: Optimizing Your Site and Part 2: Optimizing Your Adwords Strategy.

Part 3: Stay Agile!

The tips for getting started and optimizing your landing pages and adwords strategies from Part 1 and 2 were just the beginning. The key to successful search engine marketing for hotels is to continue to optimize, monitor and adjust.

Here are 4 tips for maintaining an effective Search Engine Marketing Campaign.

  1. Everyday Monitoring: Check your campaign 4-5 times a week to monitor performance. Add keywords; update ad copy with latest offers and promotions.
  2. Manage Complex Campaigns: Some campaigns have very large budgets and dozens of ad groups and will need high level of expertise to manage them correctly.
  3. Make the Right Partnership: Good SEM/PPC requires working with a qualified partner. You’ll save time and most importantly money in the long term. You should have right type of talent, with the right level of experience to manage your campaigns.
  4. Remember Your Overall Marketing Strategies: An efficient SEM/PPC strategy needs to be developed in coordination with your overall marketing strategy. For example, if you want to target new markets, you can buy keywords through PPC campaign that will avoid waiting months to be well positioned in organic search results.

Search Engine Marketing and PPC Advertising have become basic Internet marketing tools that very few hotels can afford to ignore it. There are plenty of helpful tips and tricks for how hotels can carry out a successful SEM campaign, but many of them are ineffective if properties do not have a global vision for their marketing strategy and clear objectives of how SEM/PPC fits.

At Lodging Interactive we are search engine marketing specialists exclusively serving the hotel industry. Just as you know how to manage a hotel and how to welcome your guests, our professional team knows how to bring visitors and bookings on your website.

Contact us to find out more about how we can manage your SEM.

Lodging Interactive Adds to 2014 Design Accolades with W3 Awards

The Manhattan Club and Residence Inn Marriott Boston Harbor on Tudor Wharf websites, designed by Lodging Interactive, were selected to receive design awards by The Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts.

Lodging Interactive, an award-winning digital marketing and social media engagement firm exclusively serving the hospitality industry, continues its 2014 award streak by adding W3 Silver Awards to its industry accolades.

The 9th annual awards, which were recently announced, recognized The Manhattan Club and Residence Inn Marriott Boston Harbor on Tudor Wharf sites for distinction in web design. According to the W3 Awards website, “The W3 Awards honors creative excellence on the web, and recognizes the creative and marketing professionals behind award winning sites, videos and marketing programs.”2014 W3 Silver Award Winner

Lodging Interactive’s W3 Silver award-winning websites:

– The Manhattan Club
– Residence Inn Marriott Boston Harbor on Tudor Wharf

These accolades are the latest industry awards Lodging Interactive has won in past weeks, totaling eight in 2014. The W3 Silver Award is the third design award for The Manhattan Club’s new responsive design website. Other awards for the site include a Magellan Silver Award from Travel Weekly and 2014 Web Award. This is the second award for Residence Inn Marriott Boston Harbor on Tudor Wharf’s website which also received an Interactive Media Awards™ for Outstanding Achievement earlier this year.

“Once again, we are honored to receive recognition from AIVA, The Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts, and proudly add these two awards to the recent industry acknowledgements Lodging Interactive websites have earned,” said DJ Vallauri, Founder and President of Lodging Interactive. “The W3 Awards showcase our ongoing commitment to providing the best in innovative website design to the hotel industry. This is a win for our talented in-house team and the clients that have put their trust in Lodging Interactive to provide them engaging, eye-catching sites.”

To learn more about Lodging Interactive’s web design solutions for hotels, resorts, branded properties and independent or boutique hotels, please visit our website.