A new renovation is a great opportunity to promote your hotel to get a higher ROI
Maintaining guest satisfaction can be tricky if you choose to stay open during a hotel renovation & promoting your renovation can be even trickier. Here we will outline the best way to get guests excited for the renovation, keep them happy during the renovation and promote the finished renovations utilizing social media. A strong social media presence can attract people to your hotel whether it's because of your aesthetically pleasing photos or because they feel more comfortable with a more personable hotel.
Before we Begin…
Here are some tips and things to consider throughout your renovation process.
Do you have a social media presence for your hotels’ location?
If not this is the time to start
Are you promoting your social media presence in the hotel to your guests?
If you’re not promoting inside the hotel this is the time to start
Promoting your hotels social media pages inside the hotel is a good way to get your guests to follow you so they are reminded of you next time they are looking for a hotel in the future.
Remember to tag your brands official page (if applicable) in ALL posts and stories
hopefully they will share your posts/stories on their own page where they are likely to have more followers.
Know the best times to post to social media
For travel and tourism some recommended times are between 11am & 1pm on Fridays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays
If a guest is willing to be featured on your social media platforms use this as an opportunity to reach a larger audience
Offer to tag the guest in the photo so you both increase exposure
If a guest is on board for example: you can take their photo in front of newly renovated areas and ask their opinion on them, post this to your social media platforms, tag them in it and post to your story + Maybe get a testimonial-type quote with this photo.
Come up with a specific hashtag and encourage your audience to follow it for updates on the renovation. Use this on all of your renovation posts.
For example, your specified hashtag could be: #DoubletreePittsburghReno2019
Think about the type of guests that spend the most time at your hotel to get organized with your social media plan:
Regulars will most likely already follow you on social media.
Although it’s still a good idea to ask if they follow your hotel and if not have your staff encourage them to follow you to stay up to date on the renovations and offers.
If they always choose your hotel to stay at when they’re in town get them excited for the renovations to keep them coming back.
Business professionals value a quiet space for them to work/relax and also appreciate newer, comfortable spaces.
With this group you want to make sure you’re sending emails to make them aware of the renovations going on and explain how the new renovations will improve their stay in the future while also ensuring them that their upcoming stay won't be affected by them.
Be sure to choose a renovation company that will coordinate with you and your staff on what areas will be closed off/noisy and when so this information can be passed along to your guests who value it most. For example: Amerail Systems where we have over 30 years of experience in the hotel renovation industry with guest sensitive crews and professionals who are experts in communication. Read More
Get them to come back and stay with you by letting them know about your renovations.
If possible: show them what the renovations will look like at check in (either at the registration counter or as a display in the lobby) or in an email after their stay.
Ask if they follow your hotel on social media platforms and if not encourage them to follow you to stay up to date on the renovations and any deals/packages you may offer.
Are they just passing through? Why are they passing through?
Kids in college? Visiting family? This is a great opportunity to create a regular customer. If they take that route often or will be taking it in the future make sure that they stay with you every time they pass through by promoting your renovation and having them follow you on social media.
Before the Renovation
One of the most important factors in keeping your hotel open during a renovation is to make sure you hire a renovation company that prioritizes your guests satisfaction so complaints will be at a minimum if any.
Announce that you’re renovating and who your renovation company will be
When renovation plans are finalized and contracts are signed the first thing to do on social media is to announce that you will be renovating.
If you are willing to share what is being renovated at this time, include images of the areas and when the renovations are due to begin.
Share social media info with your contractor if they have a social media platform so they can tag you and vice versa. This will give you even more exposure. Amerail Systems actively posts to their social platforms and interacts with their audience and market. Throughout the entire renovation of your hotel our team takes and shares flattering photos to our pages that will peak your guests interest & keeps them updated. Check out our pages to see for yourself: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn
Get your hashtags and social media plan together - share with your management company/brand to get it approved (if necessary)
Your hashtag list should be centered around your brand & location and always include your specified hashtag that we planned for in the "Before we Begin" section.
Include hashtags related to hot spots around you (i.e. if your hotel is close to Heinz field in Pittsburgh, PA include: #steelers, #heinzfield, #pittsburgh #steelersnation, etc. in your hashtag plan.)
Instagram has a 30 hashtag limit so choose wisely.
As for your social media plan: use this article as a guide for when and what to post
Get organized and breakdown your social media schedule weekly & daily on a Google sheet or Excel spreadsheet.
Make sure whoever is in charge of your social media platform is creative and excited to get started. This will be useful when posting to your pages stories, engaging with other posts & with your audience.
Remember those hashtags your audience would be looking at? Find and follow accounts with the same idea. Follow and interact with travel blogs, travel influencers and people who are traveling. You can find the accounts by looking at the accounts using the hashtags we talked about and more.
Plan emails to send to your high tier guests & regulars/business professionals before their stay to let them know that renovations are occurring while ensuring them that it shouldn’t impact their experience.
As mentioned in the "Before we Begin" section, use this as a chance to promote what the new renovations are and get your guests excited for them and their future stays.
If possible, include photos of what the renovations will look like and how they will improve your guests stay.
Tease the new design on your social media platforms to get people excited
If you have renderings of your new design and are willing to share them with your audience, post them to your platforms to engage your guests/potential guests.
Include before photos of what the renderings depict.
At Amerail Systems we provide our clients with 3D renderings of their renovations to demonstrate how we will enhance your property.
During the renovation
Stay in contact with the people working on the hotel and ask to be sent during pictures (or take them yourself) - post them to your social media with your hashtags
Utilize these photos for your stories on Instagram (include hashtags on these as well).
Get as many aesthetically pleasing photos as possible so that you can post the progress of the renovations on your platforms.
While you're posting during your renovations try to get guest testimonials/opinions on the new renovations from guests and ask to post them to your pages.
Stay on top of guest satisfaction and keep complaints to a minimum
Make sure you hire a renovation company that takes guest satisfaction seriously. Amerail Systems has over 30 years of experience maintaining guest satisfaction during hotel renovations.
After the renovation
Congratulations you made it! Here's what you should do now to keep up with your platforms:
If your contractor is taking professional pictures ask for them digitally.
If they are not and this is a major renovation, consider getting them done or attempt to take them yourself.
Announce that you will be sharing the “official” after pics of the renovation on a specified date and add a teaser photo to get your audience excited.
Use your specified hashtag and encourage your audience to follow it for more updates.
Do a before and after post
Post good quality pictures of the new renovation
Get guest testimonials from your regulars on how the renovations have improved their stay/what they love about the renovations.
Use these: as posts with a picture of the renovated area or as a quote graphic or as video content if the guest is ok with this.
Encourage your guests to post pictures of the new renovations with the special hashtag you came up with
When you search that hashtag you can filter through and pick the best photos your guests post and ask to share them to your page while tagging that guest.
If you choose to frame photos of your before and after renovations: display them in the lobby & post it on your social media
Finally, resume your normal posting schedule but add reminders of the new renovations every now and then and how they have improved guests experiences
Why does all of this help?
Social Media is a must have for every business now and introduces a great opportunity for the hotel industry.
Building a relationship with your current guests outside of the hotel on social media will bring them back and will bring potential guests in.
To do this: Use the tips above and engage with your audience. Potential guests will either be attracted to the glamour shots of your new renovations, to the personable nature of your social media platforms or more often then not, both!
It's safe to say that customer service is one of the most important factors to a traveler when looking for a hotel. Great customer service can be portrayed by your voice on social media.
Finally, a new renovation is the perfect chance to show your audience how "instagrammable" your hotel is. This factor is earning rank in how travelers pick where to stay during their trips. Using social media sites for travel inspiration is growing in popularity, your renovation is the perfect time to take advantage of this.