A way to market your business using online networking sites to engage, promote, brand and gain relevance with an increasingly online consumer base.
Who uses it?
Consumers have headed up the social media trend thus far. Sites like Facebook and MySpace were originally made for individuals – not companies. But basic marketing reveals that to stay ahead, you have to predict your consumers’ next moves. Companies have not only followed suit, they’ve created a whole new way to market their businesses. And it’s about time considering that social networking sites are growing at unbelievable rates. According to comScore, the number of visitors to Twitter.com jumped 131% from February to March of 2009 – more than 5 million visitors! It’s time for the hospitality industry to jump to the head of the pack.
Do you know your website’s ‘grade’? Hubspot offers a free SEO service – Website Grader – which gives you an automated evaluation of your website and allows you to compare it to others, i.e. your competitors.
Why is understanding the performance of your website important? If you are familiar with SEO (Search Engine Optimization), you understand that optimizing your website to show up “organically” – at the top of a search engine – is like free advertising. Website Grader evaluates your website based on search engine algorithms, and it breaks down the results so you can decipher what pieces need improvement. (A good article on search engine algorithms can be found from this SearchEngineWatch.com article.)
As an advertiser on ResortsandLodges.com you have likely heard of our dynamically tracking phone code. This code is easy to install, does not interfere with your website’s functionality and it can help you capture the full effectiveness of your ResortsandLodges.com campaign! It is sent out by our client services team and they are more than happy to help you understand it over the phone or via email.
Your advertising on ResortsandLodges.com is equipped with a tracking phone number to track all the phone calls the advertising generates for your business. Along with this number, you will get the dynamic tracking code – these two pieces go hand and hand. Consumers that click through from your advertising to your website are very qualified leads and are likely to pick up the phone and call your business. Thus, we want to make sure all of these are tracked as well; this will ensure the accuracy of your advertising’s results. In layman’s terms: adding this simple code to your Web pages means the tracking number from your advertising will display in place of your regular business phone number. Without the code, many of the calls will not be tracked and therefore not credited back to your campaign.
Online video is obviously a huge trend right now – see my post Online Video – why it’s key for the hospitality industry for some stats you can’t ignore. We at VEM Global™ have recognized this trend and we developed an exciting video commercial advertising opportunity. Using video footage of your property, we can cut, edit, and produce a high quality 15- or 30-second video commercial that advertises the current deal or promotion of your choice.
Then we can air your commercial throughout our extensive online video network, which includes premiere sites like YouTube (one of the top five most visited sites on the Web). We can run your commercial either pre-roll, mid-roll, and also geo-target to specific areas and audiences.
Maybe you’re familiar with the term “brand.” And if you’re like a lot of people, you’re saying: “I hear a lot about branding and building my brand. But I’m a small or mid-sized resort, hotel or rental property. I don’t have a brand.”
First things first: everyone who does business has a brand. A brand is the common impression that exists in the minds of every customer who has ever stayed with you, talked with you on the phone, seen you online or heard about you from someone else. And maintaining a good brand is much different in today’s online world than it used to be. More than ever, a good healthy brand is your key to long-term success.
This is actually good news. Part of the beauty of online media is that, unlike TV, radio, outdoor or print, your website can – and should – be involved at every step in a customer’s decision-making process. Here’s how you can be more aware of, and take care of, your online brand.
Search Engine Marketing – connecting with your customers at the moment they are looking for your products and services to buy. It is a $16 billion per year industry and there are a plethora of opportunities and trends to follow within the industry. So what do you pay attention to, what do you participate in and what do you spend your time and money on? Here are some suggestions to keep in mind.
Did you know VEM Global is an authorized co-seller of Phonalytics phone call tracking technology? And that we include call tracking within our advertising packages for free? If you are new to phone call tracking, this video gives a easy explanation of how the technology works.
Periodically VFM Leonardo emails me with some great videos targeting hoteliers. And since our flagship is ResortsandLodges.com I am always checking these videos out! If you have a chance, watch this 12 minute video on brand awareness. It’s main focal point is that hoteliers need to create VALUABLE CONTENT to help distinguish them from other brands, especially in this hyper-competitive market. Some key things to remember:
– The average property is viewed 800 times online before they get one booking
– Travel shoppers visit an average of 11 websites during their research
Also, take a look at my previous article “Is your website doing all it can to sell your business?” as this gets into more details on ensuring your website presents your brand in the best manner.