This Week’s Latest Social Media News and What it Means for Hotels – August 21, 2019

The end of August is fast approaching, and new social media changes are coming alongside the rapidly-ending summer season! Let’s take a look at all the updates that have happened within the past two weeks that will impact hospitality businesses everywhere.

Instagram and WhatsApp Are Getting a Rebrand

Facebook is making its ownership of Instagram and WhatsApp more visible, “rebranding” the apps as “Instagram from Facebook” and “WhatsApp from Facebook.” The “From Facebook” part is already showing up on Instagram, but it reads a little like fine print on the login page. There aren’t any other structural changes aside from this small branding update for both apps.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts

This may not seem like a big update, but this is likely laying the groundwork for the seamless direct message and chat integration that Facebook wants to set up between the three apps. Most people know, after all, that WhatsApp and Instagram are already owned by the company, so while some legal matters may have something to do with this amidst all the privacy concerns, it could also indicate a bigger integration moving forward.

Facebook Is Expanding Search Ad Placements 

Search Ads are being tested in the United States and Canada, allowing advertisers to show ad campaigns in relevant searches that users make on-platform. This placement has been testing since late last year, and it’s slowly rolling out to more advertisers in an expanded test.

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Image source: Jon Loomer Digital 

Note that search ads must also appear in the newsfeed as sponsored posts. They can appear as a static image or a carousel ad. Right now, it doesn’t seem like advertisers can bid on select keywords, but instead you’ll appear based on keywords on your business’s Page.

What This Means for Hotels and Resorts

Facebook search ads could be a great way to show up in relevant searches, increasing more traffic from users who are seeking out accommodations like what you offer your guests. Facebook hasn’t had something like this before, so it could be a great opportunity. Since you can’t bid on keywords, however, make sure that the search terms your guests are most likely to use are somewhere on your Page.

Instagram and IGTV Desktop Publishing Now Available 

Jenn’s Trends spotted a new Instagram feature: Facebook Page admins can upload and publish Instagram and IGTV posts from desktop by using Facebook’s Creator Studio. This also gives users the ability to manage Instagram direct messages through desktop, too. Previously, this was only available through third-party apps or the mobile app. Note that your Instagram account must be linked to your Facebook to take advantage of this.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts 

If you aren’t using a third-party scheduling tool for Instagram and IGTV, you can now use the Creator Studio for free to manage content for these platforms from a desktop. This is much easier for many hotels and resorts to use than a mobile app, and will streamline the process significantly.

Pinterest Rolls Out New Video Features 

Pinterest is increasing video capability on the platform by rolling out new features that are designed to help creators better reach their audiences.

New updates include the following:

●     An improved, easier-to-use video uploader

●     A video tab on platform so users can find video content all in one place

●     Lifetime video analytics

●     Video pin scheduling

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These new features are currently available in France, Germany, and all English-speaking countries. They’ll be rolling out worldwide soon.

What This Means for Hotels and Resorts

Video is a high-engaging medium on all other social networks, and the ability to leverage it well on Pinterest can be a huge asset for hotels and resorts. It will be easy to repurpose the gorgeous video you have of your location, resort, or on-site amenities into a video pin that potential guests will swoon over. If you have these features available to you, take advantage of them now.

Pinterest Releases Story Pins 

Pinterest is catching up on some social trends, slowly rolling out Story Pins. The feature is intended to be “immersive,” and will hold multiple media options including images, videos, text, and destination links to the site of your choice. Story pins all need to contain a title cover, and must have a minimum of 2 slides but can have a maximum of 20.

Right now, only select iOS users and brands have access.

What This Means for Hotels and Resorts

Story content is wildly popular across multiple platforms, regularly capturing user interest on Facebook and Instagram. YouTube is rolling out their own version, and now Pinterest is, too. A great use of this feature for hotels and resorts will be to feature different parts of their property like a walk-through, or to tell a story by showcasing the progress of events happening on-property, too.


As we’ve been moving into August, social platforms have really been maintaining their always-fast pace when it comes to releasing new updates to improve the experience. In the past few weeks, we’ve seen a few key updates that could impact how hotels, resorts, and other hospitality businesses are marketing on social.

We’re going to look at each one, but first let’s take a look at some key statistics that you need to know about social in 2019.

Infographic From Oberlo Demonstrates The Value of Social 

Oberlo recently created an infographic that detailed the 10 most important social media statistics marketers need to know in 2019. This, of course, includes marketers who work in the hospitality industry, too.

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These 10 statistics are:

●     There are 3.2 billion daily active social media users, making up around 42% of the population

●     68% of adults report that they’re Facebook users, keeping Facebook as the market leader

●     Millennials are the heaviest social media users (90.4%), followed by Gen X (77.5%) and then Baby Boomers (48.2%)

●     Each user spends an average of two hours and twenty two minutes per day on the various networks

●     73% of marketers believe that social marketing has been “somewhat effective” or “very effective”

●     54% of social media users are researching products on the various platforms

●     71% of consumers who had a positive social experience are likely to recommend the brand to friends and family

●     49% of consumers depend on influencer recommendations to make purchase decisions

●     Daily Active Stories users increased to 500 million in early 2019.

●     91% of social media users are accessing the platforms on mobile, and almost 80% of all social time happens on mobile devices.

Facebook Changes Mobile Aspect Ratios 

Starting on August 19th, mobile Page posts and ad campaigns are going to look a little different. The new content will be much more condensed, showing only three lines of text instead of seven before displaying a “see more” prompt, and the aspect ratios for visuals will shift to 4:5 from their previous 2:3. Any media taller than the 4:5 aspect ratio will be hidden on mobile.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: It’s more important than ever to adapt to this new, condensed look. If not, key portions of your post text may be hidden underneath the “see more” prompt and your media could be hidden all together. Adapt quickly, and remember to always grab users’ attention and let them know what’s in it for them right off the bat.

If you have any ad campaigns currently running with media outside of this aspect ratio, change it now.

Facebook Announces Cryptocurrency Plans 

About a month ago, Facebook announced that they had plans to release their own cryptocurrency (sort of), called “Libra.” The cryptocurrency will actually be coming from the Libra Association, which Facebook founded along with several other massive companies like Master Card and PayPal, and it’s supposedly about making it easier for people to send money to each other online.

Right now, we don’t know much more about Facebook Libra, including Facebook’s long-term plans with the digital currency, but you can read a great breakdown on the topic here.

What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: For the time being, we’re not sure exactly what this will mean for hotels and resorts. There’s a good chance that eventually, this cryptocurrency could be used on-platform when users are trying to book reservations or services directly on social. Right now, we just don’t know more, but this is big news, so we’ll update you with new information as it comes out.

Twitter Rolls Out Broadcast Scheduling Feature 

Twitter has just released a new broadcast scheduling feature in their Media Studio, which allows soon-to-be broadcasters to get everything synced up before they go live. When using this new feature, you can also give users a wider time frame to discover your content, sharing a link to what will become the live broadcast at the designated start time.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: Live video is becoming increasingly popular on Twitter, offering a valuable opportunity for brands in the hospitality industry to connect with more guests. The scheduling feature will make it much easier for your team so that no one is left scrambling at the last minute, but its ability to give you more visibility is the biggest advantage. If you’re going live on Twitter, try to make sure you schedule it moving forward.

YouTube Automates Comment Moderation 

YouTube has recently made a few updates to streamline the comment moderation process, automatically flagging inappropriate comments and instantly holding them for your review. This is all done based on the platform’s algorithm, and according to YouTube, has resulted in a 75% drop in comment flags for the channels using the feature during its testing phase.

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This moderation feature is available globally, but only works on comments written in the following languages:

●     English

●     Spanish

●     Russian

●     Portuguese

●     Korean

●     French

●     Arabic

●     German

●     Japanese

●     Turkish

●     Vietnamese

●     Thai

●     Indonesian

What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: Hotels and resorts utilizing YouTube to connect with potential guests will almost certainly appreciate this news. We’d all much rather have YouTube flagging the bulk of inappropriate comments instead of trying to catch them all ourselves or risking potential guests being turned off if they spot the comments first. This is easy to turn on, and keep in mind that if a flagged comment turns out to be fine, you can always approve it right away.

Hospitality Social Media Marketing News July 16, 2019

In two short weeks, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter have all either announced updates or made updates to their platforms that will impact social media accounts for businesses in the hospitality industry. Keep reading to see all the changes and what they mean for hotels and resorts.

Facebook Ads Organic “Top Fans” Targeting Option 

According to Social Media Today, Facebook is rolling out a new feature that allows Pages to target their “top fans” with organic posts, showing the content only to them. This could be used to thank them, share exclusive content, or even try to increase the likelihood that big Page supporters see specific updates.

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Image source: Social Media Today 

In order to use this feature, you need to have the “Top Fans” badge enabled for your Page. This can be done under your Settings under the “Facebook Badges” section.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: This new feature is a good opportunity to foster a community that you may already have on Facebook while leveraging an exclusivity that can bring people closer together. Consider offering exclusive discounts or first-access to amenities around your hotel, or run specials specifically for your top fans. This will keep people engaging consistently.

Facebook Released Information on Comment Ranking 

Facebook recently released information regarding what signals they use to rank the quality of comments on public posts, determining what shows up when someone is scrolling past a post in their feed. They look for the following:

●     Integrity signals, like whether or not the Community Standards are violated

●     What users want according to surveys, which is a signal Facebook has left vague and described as “the types of comments people want to see”

●     How users are interacting with the comment, including whether they’re commenting or what type of reaction they use

●     Poster actions, like hiding, deleting, or engaging comments

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: The recent update was designed to reduce clickbait tactics that some users and Pages utilize to try to get more attention on the platform. Hotels and resorts can use this update to their favor in attempt to get strong comments that benefit you more visibility. If someone comments about how their stay with you was the best part of their whole vacation, give it as much engagement as possible, using a “love” reaction and leaving a comment designed to generate more conversation. More visible positive social proof is always good.

Facebook Is Removing Fields in Page Descriptions 

Starting on August 1st of this year, Facebook will be removing certain fields in the Page description area. We know that the fields that will be removed definitely include (but may not be limited to) the following:

●     Company Overview

●     Affiliation

●     Mission

●     Biography

●     Personal Interests

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Head over to your Facebook Page now and take a look to see what– if any– information you currently have in these sections. If there is anything of value there that could impact how potential guests perceive your brand or interact with it, try to add it into other sections of the Page description. This information would most likely be in the “Company Overview” and “Mission” sections of your Page.

Instagram Brings Ads to Explore Section 

Instagram has announced that they’ll be bringing ads to their Explore Feed. When users click on an image or video in their Explore feed, they’re then able to scroll through similar content that Instagram has compiled for them. This is where the ads will show up, looking just like Instagram’s current newsfeed ads.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: According to Instagram, more than 50% of all accounts visit the Explore section of the app at least once per month, so this is a good opportunity for more ad placements on the platform. More ad placements can help stabilize the existing demand in the marketplace, which could be good for ad costs.

We don’t know yet exactly how these ads will perform in terms of reach, engagement, brand lift, and conversions, but Instagram Ads typically yield high results across the board.

Twitter Tests Direct Message Prompts 

Twitter is currently testing direct message prompts, which allow you to instantly share links through direct messages to those who you talk to regularly. It’s designed to help users share tweets and connect a little easier. This is similar to Facebook’s “Share” option, which allows users to share a post in a direct message instead of sharing it on the user’s or Page’s wall.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: It’s possible that this could be used to engage with top influencers and brand ambassadors in the hospitality industry, engaging them with content that’s genuinely relevant to them. If your resort Tweeted about a new expansion publicly, you could send a DM to a key few industry influencers that you have some sort of relationship and even ask if they want a first glimpse.

Hospitality Social Media Marketing News Issue June 16, 2019

Dying to know what’s new in social media and how it could affect your hotel or resort? This month we’ve got changes from Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, along with a few issues of note on Facebook. Let’s take a look at each and what it means for you.

Advertisers Report Continual Issues with Facebook’s Ads Manager

Issues have been ongoing with Facebook’s Ads Manager that have dated all the way back to last November when there was an outage only a few days before Thanksgiving. Advertisers have continued to report problems with performance of the platform, including major inconsistencies and results, and struggling to publish or turn off ad campaigns.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: A large number of hotels and resorts depend heavily on Facebook Ads for their advertising strategies, so this isn’t great news. As a note, not all advertisers have been affected with these issues, but they’re something to watch for just in case you are.

The best thing you can do right now is monitor your campaigns particularly closely. If you can’t seem to turn off a campaign, drain its budget immediately after sending a Facebook help ticket, and watch out for unreliable campaign performance. Until the issues are resolved, this is the best we can do to be proactive.

Horizontal Video Comes to IGTV

Landscape-styled videos are now supported on Instagram’s long-form video sister app, IGTV. They’ll be formatted similar to a YouTube video, which can take up a small portion of the screen when viewed vertically but will take up the full screen when the phone is rotated horizontally.

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Image source: Instagram 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: If you’re using IGTV and have videos that will look better with a vertical layout, this is your chance. For hotels and resorts in particularly picturesque locations, this option can help better capture more of the beauty in the background to entice guests to come stay with you.

Twitter Releases Live Streaming with Guests

Twitter has just rolled out a new feature allowing mobile users to host a live broadcast and inviting up to three guests to join them. The guests will join on an audio-only basis, so they’ll be able to be heard but not seen.

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Image source: Twitter 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Live video is a strong social strategy for hotels and resorts, and having new ways to make these videos even more engaging for potential guests is great news. Consider using this feature to allow guests to ask questions or to interview influencers about their experiences.

YouTube Announces Image-Only Discovery Ads

YouTube Ads have, until now, been a video-only platform, but this is changing soon. YouTube has just announced new image-only discovery ads, which will show up in the YouTube home feed and discover sections. Users can click to head straight to an advertiser’s site, shop, and more.

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Image source: Google 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Video ads have proven to be incredibly effective on YouTube, but not every hotel and resort wants to continually invest large sums into creating new video campaigns for advertising purposes. This new images-only option can make YouTube Ads more accessible on the platform, allowing you to reach guests at a slightly lower time and financial cost. Consider testing these new ad placements out and see if they work for you.

YouTube Is Altering Public Subscriber Counts

YouTube has announced an update that will impact how viewers see subscriber counts on the channels they’re viewing. Channels with fewer than 1,000 subscribers will have their exact number of scribers displayed, but those with more than 1,000 subscribers will have their follower counts rounded. An account with 5,005,000 followers, for example, would show an estimated count of 5,000,000.

Creators will still have access to the exact numbers in their analytics, found in their Creator Studio.

This update is set to roll out in August of 2019.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Social proof is an important part of all social media marketing, so this update could have minor impacts on hotels and resorts marketing on YouTube. If the rounding doesn’t work in your favor, lowering your subscriber count slightly, that might affect how users perceive your videos, but as long as the content is good that’s what matters most. To ensure best results on the platform, create videos that your audience wants to see and use keyword-heavy titles and descriptions to increase their visibility.

Read The Latest Hospitality Related Social Media Marketing News – June 1, 2019

Social media evolves so quickly that so much has already happened since our last edition of our biweekly newsletter. Facebook is shaking up the algorithm again, Twitter has rolled out new retweeting features, and Instagram Stories just got even more impressive reach. We’ll go over all of this and more in this newsletter, and explain what exactly it means for you.

Facebook’s New Algorithm Prioritizes “Worthwhile” Content

Facebook announced two algorithm updates recently. The first prioritizes content from friends that an individual might want to hear from most. The second prioritizes links that a person might consider “most worthwhile.”

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: The second algorithm update that focuses on “worthwhile” links is something that hotels and resorts should pay attention to. Offer links that your audience will find value from– like links to travel information they may need or fun things to do around your resort– instead of just spamming links to your site. This will not only help you get more clicks, but rank higher in the algorithm.

Facebook Clears Up that Clear History Tool

Facebook plans to release its “Clear History” tool in the coming months, which will allow users to manage and even disconnect their off-Facebook activity from their user profile. This is designed to be an improvement in transparency. They’ve acknowledged that it may impact targeting, but it will not impact analytics.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: We’ve all been worried about what exactly the “Clear History” tool will mean, because many of us use Facebook’s advanced marketing to show relevant ads to niche audiences. Some of Facebook’s most powerful tools– including the pixel– may not be effective moving forward. Retargeting is going to look a lot different on platform, which may mean that we’ll need to rely more on other platforms like Google Display Ads to make up for it.

Facebook Launched Automated Ads Builder

Facebook has released several new automation ad tools designed to help businesses improve and streamline their Facebook advertising.

New tools include:

●     The ability to create up to six different versions of your ads automatically with suggestions from Facebook on CTAs, text, and other creatives based on your Page. Once active, they’ll show you the best-performing option.

●     Tailored audience suggestions based on data from your Page.

●     Recommended budgets based on your goal.

●     Fast notifications regarding your ads, including ad performance and suggestions to improve them.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: For hotels and resorts just breaking into Facebook Ads, automated ads can help you get used to the system and yield some early insights into creatives that may be effective. These ads are not, however, typically going to be a true replacement for custom-written copy that contain intentional messaging and offers to drive action. This is a useful feature, but shouldn’t be used as a substitute for manual ad creation for the most part.

Facebook Updates Video Ranking

In addition to updating the big algorithm, Facebook is also changing how videos are prioritized in the feed.

Video will now be prioritized based on the following criteria:

●     Loyalty and intent, which includes repeat viewership

●     Viewing duration, with more weight on videos keeping users engaged for at least one minute

●     Originality, so videos that are “unoriginal” or that are involved insharing schemes will be demoted

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Image source: Facebook 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Video has been a crucial part of social media marketing, and as long as hotels and resorts are creating quality content that their audience wants to see, this algorithm update could help. Try incorporating more live video into the mix, and have videos like “Ten Things to Do in Santa Monica” or “Rental Car or Uber: What’s Right for Your Vacation?” that will give guests information they’ll need when visiting you.

Twitter Retweets Now Support GIFs, Videos, and Images

Previously, when users on Twitter retweeted a status, they could only comment with text. Now Twitter is allowing users to include images, GIFs, and videos in their retweet responses.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Twitter has been working to find ways that encourage users to have more meaningful conversations on the platform. Hotels and resorts can use this to their advantage. Not only will visual components add a level of originality to a retweet and help it stand out, but the right images and videos can help you to promote your location too.

Share images or videos pertaining to your resort when appropriate, and use GIFs and images to contribute to the conversation in a branded way.

Instagram Adds to Explore Tab

Instagram is shaking up their Explore tab. There will now be a navigation bar that features pinned shortcuts to Shopping and IGTV, which will then be followed with topics tailored to each user’s interests like “travel” or “food.”

The explore grid will also now feature Stories, giving them even more visibility.

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Image source: Instagram 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts

Instagram’s Explore section is used by more than 50% of its audience every month, and this is one of the top ways users discover new brands and accounts. The ability to more easily connect with users interested in “Travel” is a great opportunity, so try to increase the likelihood of appearing here by using plenty of travel-related hashtags like #wanderlust and #tuesdaytravels.

May 17, 2019 Issue: What’s New in Social Media This Week and What it Means for Hotels

In the last few weeks, the Facebook empire has made some big developments to their platforms that are directly relevant to hotels, resorts, and other businesses in the hospitality industry. In this week’s social media updates, we’ll look at each one and how you can expect for it to impact you.

Facebook’s New Interface Prioritizes New Features 

Facebook has recently released a new mobile app that is a little more user-friendly and runs a little quicker. It also puts emphasis on Stories, Groups, and Events, drawing users’ attention to these popular features.

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Image source: BusinessInsider 

The mobile app is already rolling out, and the matching desktop interface will likely soon follow.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: This is good news, because Facebook is prioritizing interactivity and community-building features that users are drawn to. For hotels and resorts who are creating communities on the social media network in the form of groups, using events to generate interest, and leveraging Stories to extend your reach, you’ll be ahead of your competition and able to stay relevant in your audience’s feed.

Messenger’s Interface Gets an Update 

Just like Facebook, their Messenger app has been updated with a simplified, faster version that’s been a little decluttered. Facebook has been working on rebuilding the platform “from the ground up” so that it’s more functional and a lot faster for users. The new version has a heavy focus on chat, but also offers video co-watching capabilities to keep people interacting within the app.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Facebook announced earlier this year that they’re planning on integrating their messaging apps– including Messenger, Instagram direct, and WhatsApp– for a seamless user experience, and this may be part of it. A new and improved messenger could mean that more of your guests will use this messaging platform to get in touch, so make sure you’re paying close attention to these channels.

Messenger Offers New Lead Generation Tools 

Facebook’s Messenger is gaining a few new features designed to make it easier for businesses to drive meaningful results through the platform. This includes appointment-booking, lead generation templates, and clickable CTAs that can drive actions. These features are currently being beta tested, and will roll out to those who don’t have them later this year.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Increasing numbers of guests are using Messenger to get in touch with hotels and resorts, and this trend will likely continue with the new and improved mobile app. These features can be used to encourage users to take actions like heading your site to book rooms, and booking reservations for your in-resort restaurant or spa.

Instagram Releases Stories’ Quiz Stickers 

Instagram’s new Quiz Stickers allow users and brands to ask their followers a multiple-choice question. You can choose the correct answer, and you can see which answers your followers are choosing.

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What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: This is a versatile sticker when it comes to connecting with guests. One great use may be to offer users who answer a question about your location or your resort correctly a chance to win a prize, like a free extra night or a discounted spa service. This will generate a lot of hype and engagement, which is always great for bookings.

Even if you aren’t using it as part of a giveaway opportunity, guests love interactive Story features, and this is one that will be sure to catch their attention and help you build brand awareness– especially if they want to know whether or not they answered right. Follow up the quiz sticker with a short video explaining the correct answer if possible.

Hospitality Social Media News – April 1, 2019 Edition

A lot has happened in the past two weeks in the social media marketing world, and as hotels and resorts tackle the Spring Break rush and prepare for the upcoming summer busy season, now is as good a time as ever to make sure you’re up to date with all the new changes.

Twitter Releases New Video Analytics Tool 

Twitter is rolling out new analytics in their Media Studio that revolve around video metrics, including data that will help brands find the best time to publish their videos on platform. You’ll be able to see peak activity levels for each day of the week and review specific time periods if you choose.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: While most social media platforms don’t post content strictly in a linear timeline, posting at the right time can still ensure that you get a boost of visibility and engagement as soon as your video goes live, helping it get more traction and momentum. Knowing the right times to post for your specific audience can help you get your message to more of your guests and followers.

Facebook Divides Ad Relevance Score Into Three Metrics  

Facebook’s ad relevance score is being divided up into three “more granular ad relevance diagnostics metrics.” These will be Quality Ranking, Engagement Rate Ranking, and Conversion Rate ranking, some of which are predicted or comparative metrics based on Facebook’s algorithms.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: Facebook’s ad relevance score–which was calculated on a score from one to ten– is an important metric for advertisers, and has historically correlated with ad performance. Ads with high relevance scores were also more likely to get priority in the ad system and be charged lower CPCs, so while it was a “black box” metric, it definitely wasn’t a vanity metric.

These three new metrics will give more specific feedback to advertisers, showing them where the weak spots in the campaigns may be from Facebook’s perspective, and making it easier for hotels and resorts to better optimize their campaigns. We’ll have to see how exactly they influence things like CPC as they roll out on a wider basis and we have time for split testing.

Twitter Updates In-App Camera to Prioritize Live Content

Twitter is updating their in-app camera, making it easier to access and use. The options to capture images, videos, and go live are now front and center, encouraging users to take part in real-time sharing through the native app.

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What This Means for Hotels and Resorts: Twitter has made a lot of changes this year to improve authenticity on the platform, and they’re also encouraging the creation and sharing of live content. These changes are subtle, but show the direction of the platform. Hotels and resorts should consider investing in live videos on Periscope (Twitter’s live broadcasting company) in addition to hosting lives on Facebook and Instagram for a well-rounded social strategy. Consider lives featuring your property or events you are hosting.

Twitter Tests New Comment Moderation Tools

We typically don’t cover in-testing features in our newsletter, but this is a big one for Twitter so we wanted to flag it early. Twitter is currently testing new native comment moderation tools, including a feature that will let you hide replies from other users on your tweets.

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What This Means For Hotels and Resorts: Twitter is focusing on that transparency and authenticity, but they still know that sometimes you need to be able to have some control on what’s happening on your tweets and your profile. This feature will allow you to shut down some conversations in a more transparent way, hiding replies without having to block users all together.

If someone replies to one of your comments with hate speech, spam, or other language or sentiments you don’t want your guests to read and associate with your hotel and resort, go ahead and hide them. It seems like you may have the option to allow users to read hidden replies.

What Just Happened in Social Media and what it Means for Hotels – March 14, 2019

The hospitality industry never sleeps and social media doesn’t, either. This week’s edition of our biweekly newsletter discusses new changes to Facebook groups, expanded Promoted Pin access, clarification of YouTube policies, and some news about what Instagram is working on next.

Facebook Releases New Management Tools 

Facebook has just released a flurry of new formatting updates and management tools for Page and group admins. These new changes include:

●     The expansion of subscription groups, which allow businesses to create paid, subscription-only groups

●     Searching membership requests by name, so you can ensure certain audience members are granted fast access to your group.

●     Page admins can respond to Instagram private messages through their Facebook inboxes

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: Improved ease of use for Page and group admins is an asset for hotels and resorts and any of the social media managers that work for them. Groups have become a strong marketing strategy, and having the ability to better manage branded groups that center your hotel or resort can provide a better experience for you and your guests.

And take note of the Instagram messaging showing up in the inboxes of Facebook Pages. There are also rumors that Instagram is testing messaging on the desktop version of their site, and all of this lines up with their grand plan to integrate the messaging apps from Messenger, Instagram Direct, and WhatsApp by early next year.

Pinterest Expands Ad Access to Four New Countries 

Pinterest has released ad access to four new countries, including business accounts in Austria, Germany, Italy, and Spain, who previously didn’t have this feature available to them yet, even though countries who did have the ads already were able to target audiences in those countries.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: It’s not uncommon for hotels or resorts to have businesses in multiple countries. If this applies to you, and one of your business accounts is located in Germany, Italy, Spain, or Austria, you now have the opportunity to run Promoted Pin campaigns. They can be an effective way to generate site traffic, especially if you target keywords like “dream vacation” or “mountain resort.”

Instagram Releases Follower-Sorting Feature 

Instagram is testing and slowly releasing a new follower-sorting feature on the mobile app. Business profiles can sort their follower list by who has been there the longest, and who was most recent to join.

Image source: Social Media Today 

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: While this feature may not seem too impressive at a first glance, it actually has huge potential for hotels and resorts.Your most long-term followers, for example, could be potential brand advocates. Your most recent followers, on the other hand, may benefit from some active relationship-building, like an effort to reach out through a private DM to welcome them to your channel or offer a special coupon code for booking.

YouTube Updates Its Penalty System

YouTube has updated and simplified their penalty system for creators and community members. Now, if users violate a rule, they’ll be given a warning with no immediate penalty on their channel aside from the removal of the offending content. After the warnings, if violations are still made, YouTube will freeze the ability to upload new content twice, before terminating the channel on the third strike.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: All brands on YouTube should be following their guidelines as is, and most hotels and resorts do that well. The majority of guidelines focus on things like language, inappropriate content, and scams or misleading information. As long as your external links are taking users exactly where you say they will, you’ll pretty much be in the clear.

YouTube Confirms Crackdown on Giveaways 

The YouTube community has recently noticed that videos featuring on-platform giveaways have been flagged more often, and YouTube has confirmed that while giveaways and contests aren’t being banned, they’re cracking down more on certain violations. Specifically, giveaways cannot be used to link to external websites that are solely designed to increase engagement metrics.

What This Means for Hotels & Resorts: If you want to host giveaways or contests on YouTube to promote your hotel or resort, make sure that you’re following all of their community rules. You can still use giveaways to increase brand awareness and generate engagement on-platform with on-platform videos.

What Just Happened in Social Media and What it Means for Hotels

Social media never stops, and neither do the updates that shape the platforms our guests are frequently engaging with. In the past two weeks, we’ve seen exciting new developments from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and even Reddit that are all working to change the game just a bit. Let’s take a look at all these updates and how they’ll affect hotels and resorts.

Facebook Releases “Unsend” Feature for Messenger

Facebook has rolled out a new “unsend” feature in Messenger, allowing you to remove a message within ten minutes after it was first sent. To delete specific blocks of text, tap on it and select the option “remove for everyone.” It will be replaced with an alert showing that a message was removed. This works for group conversations as well as one-on-one convos in Messenger, and it’s being released to a global audience.

What This Means for Hotels

We’ve all likely made use of Gmail’s “unsend” feature at some point, and now we have this functionality for Facebook, too. If you accidentally send incorrect information or need to revise a statement, you can use this feature when working with guests, but note that you should be careful of how you do it. Have a clear amendment and an explanation of what the deleted content was and why it was deleted so that guests won’t feel like you’re trying to cover up mistakes or pull one over on them.

Twitter Bans Follow-Unfollow Services

Twitter has announced that they’re suspending follow-unfollow services, cutting off API access to this software. Follow-unfollow software goes against Twitter’s terms of service, and is often used in attempt to quickly inflate someone’s follower count. Apps being suspended include Crowdfire, ManageFlitter, and Statusbrew.

What This Means for Hotels

This announcement closely aligns with the changes Twitter has been making recently to improve authenticity on the platform and the user experience along with it. Since follow-unfollow is more like an attempt at cheating the system instead of engaging with it, taking away from the user experience. If you’re using this software, go ahead and remove it now and focus on other strategies to connect with new followers.

Instagram Now Features IGTV Previews in Feed

Instagram has announced that previews of videos from IGTV accounts users follow will now appear in their main Instagram feeds. Creators will be able to share up to a minute-long preview to Instagram, and users simply have to tap on the preview to watch the full-length content on IGTV.

What This Means for Hotels

IGTV is a standalone app that integrates with Instagram, and now it will be much easier to usher users from one to the other to see your long-form content. Consider using IGTV to share longer videos showcasing your resort, highlighting events, and even highlighting amenities or doing Q&As and use your built-in Instagram audience to get more viewers.

LinkedIn Releases New Tools for Company Pages

LinkedIn has rolled out a lot of new updates this month, the first of which includes new features for their Company Pages.

The new changes include:

●     More in-depth analytics that include more audience demographic information

●     A Pages Toolkit that feature short, actionable guides about how to optimize advertising on-platform

●     Content Suggestions, which provide information on what your audience may be interested in seeing

What This Means for Hotels

Company Pages historically haven’t been as useful as business profiles on other platforms just because there weren’t as many useful, actionable features for companies to use. LinkedIn is really trying to change that, and the new resources available for Pages could make them significantly more prominent for hotels and resorts looking to connect with B2B professionals.

LinkedIn Rolls Out New Recruiting & Job Searching Features

LinkedIn has rolled out more recruiting and job hunting features in attempt to streamline the process for both parties involved. Job searchers will be able to learn more about the companies they’re interested in working with, and even track them for future job openings. There are more developments in the works here, and hopefully we’ll have more news soon.

What This Means for Hotels

Social media isn’t just for connecting with guests; it can help you find great employees for your hotels and resorts, too. If you’re hiring, take a close look at LinkedIn. You could find some outstanding candidates and quickly review their job history and even testimonials from past colleagues or employers.

LinkedIn Announced “LinkedIn Live”

Live broadcasting is everywhere, and now LinkedIn has announced their own version. After partnering with a few third-party streaming services, they’ve created a native live feature. Right now it’s in testing with a small group of users in the US, but this will likely roll out to wider audiences soon, allowing users to share broadcasts with select groups or to all of their followers.

Image source: Social Media Today 

What This Means for Hotels

LinkedIn is unique in that it’s a business-oriented professional network, so your guests will be using it differently than Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Make sure that the live content you share is created with that in mind. You can focus on information sharing and value-based lives to appeal to your guests. Consider starting with videos that offer information about how to choose a resort for your conference, or places to visit in their off-time when guests are near your resort for work.

Reddit Offers Advanced Features for Advertisers

Reddit Ads have been around for a while, but they’re now releasing a few new features to make the platform more appealing for advertisers. They’ve just rolled out App Install campaigns, which will be shown to users of Reddit’s mobile app for the highest chance of users taking action. They’ve also improved their ad tracking and reporting capabilities with a conversion pixel, giving advertisers more concrete data about how their campaigns are performing.

What This Means for Hotels

First, if your hotel or resort has a mobile app, consider testing out Reddit’s App Install campaigns to connect with new guests. And if you’ve used Reddit before but ended up unhappy with the lack of detailed reporting, consider taking another look. Reddit Ads has less competition than other social PPC platforms like Facebook and Instagram, so that could work in your favor.

Facebook Announces Plans to Merge Messaging Apps

In the past year, there’s been a lot of discussion and scandal around data breaches and platform manipulation from third parties. This newsletter, which is covering the last few weeks of news, shows that this is still front and center in the minds of many, including the platforms themselves. Without further adieu, let’s take a look at what’s new on social media and how it will impact hotels and resorts.

Facebook Announces Plans to Merge Messaging Apps 

The New York Times has just announced that Facebook is reportedly planning on integrating the private message features from Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger into one single technical infrastructure. According to Facebook, the services will each remain in stand-alone apps, it would just change from a technical point of view.

What This Means for Hotels 

We think this is a game changer in social media and, even more importantly, in the worlds of customer service and live chat.

Here’s what we know so far:

●     Users will be able to connect across multiple messaging platforms

●     All apps will incorporate end-to-end encryption

●     The goal is to increase utility (and we think it will)

●     It will change the game for live chat, and we’re already underway working on what’s next.

Facebook Offers New Additional Transparency Features 

Facebook is rolling out new transparency features to hopefully restore more trust in the Pages marketing on platform. One of these features is their new Quality tab, which tells users if a Page has had any content revoked due to false information, hate speech, or other violations of community guidelines. It will also show Pages the content that was removed to hopefully better help them understand how they were in violation of the rules.

Image source: Facebook  

They’re also cracking down on the creation of new Pages or profiles that are similar to those removed for violating standards.

What This Means for Hotels

Trust is a big thing for Facebook users right now, and the platform is doing everything they can to at least help users trust the brands advertising on it right now. Ensure that your content is adhering to the community regulations and you’ll be in good standing with Facebook and your audience. There’s no need to hide skeletons, after all, if there aren’t any skeletons in the first place.

Twitter Rolls Out Two New Features

Last week, Twitter released a new tool on desktop that allows users to edit images in-app before publishing. The tool isn’t anything too advanced, but it does allow you to resize or crop the image to hopefully make it more appealing to your followers.

Image source: Matt Navarra 

They also released new social functions for events, including the ability to see how many people are engaging with an event in real time.

What This Means for Hotels

Most hotels and resorts are likely having their images edited before they make it to Twitter, but if you aren’t and you’re looking for an easy solution, this is it.

The social context for events, on the other hand, could have a huge impact on hotels. If you’re hosting a big conference at your hotel and want to create a Twitter Event to generate buzz, this feature could help you leverage social proof to do exactly that.

Periscope Adds Guests to Live Streams

Periscope– Twitter’s sister company focusing on live videos– has just updated their platform so that users hosting a broadcast can invite up to three guests to participate. This feature previously wasn’t available on Periscope, but there is a catch: the invited users won’t appear on the screen, and it will only be their audio that’s shared.

What This Means for Hotels

More options for live video are always a good thing considering its value in today’s social media marketing climate. If your audience is particularly active on Twitter, you can take advantage of this and interview guests, staff, or other industry experts. Keep in mind, however, that it’s easier on Facebook and Instagram to host lives where guests can be seen during the broadcast, so it may be a good idea to start there.

LinkedIn Ads Roll Out Interest Targeting

LinkedIn Ads has just introduced interest targeting to their ad platform, allowing advertisers to target users based on topics they’ve expressed interest in. And one of those interests are “business travel,” opening the door for hotels and resorts to connect with potential guests who may be looking to book reservations.

What This Means for Hotels

LinkedIn Ads can yield great results, and if you’re using them for marketing to either gain new employees or connect with new guests, interest targeting may open up options to better connect with the right people. You could create an ad targeting that “business travel” interest, for example, or even target users who are interested in biology if you’ve got a science convention happening in your hotel and want to increase attendance and hotel reservations.

While you don’t want to use targeting that you don’t need or that isolates too much of your audience, this feature will be good to have when it’s relevant to the campaigns you’re creating.