Does your organization have a plan in place for content creation and social media monitoring during holidays and weekends?
You know….that time when people travel to your destination, stay in your hotel, look for things to do, places to eat, etc.?
Is someone “answering the social media phone” during those times?
The social web is a place to put content, sure, but it is also becoming a place where you must be ready to provide customer service.
Visitors and guests expect that someone will answer their questions and respond to them even when it’s your “day off.” It’s not much fun for the destination marketer or hotelier but it is what it is; you’ve got to plan for it.
Working one person to death on social media because everyone else waves their hands helplessly and says, “Oh, but I’m not a techie!” is horse manure.
I’d say, cross-train your staff in social media for tourism to build a deeper bench.
Answer The Social Media Phone
Holidays and weekends are a massive opportunity to:
1) Make solid connections with new visitors.
2) Reconnect with and welcome those former locals who are returning home for a visit.
3) Reconnect with and welcome repeat visitors who are not new to your destination/hotel, but ARE new to your Facebook Page, Twitter account or blog.
4) Chat online with those “expats” who aren’t physically in town but are talking on social media about their memories of you; they would love it if you’d say hello in response.
You can build a whole army of supporters who will go back home and sing your praises, online and off.
Or, you could “not answer the phone.”
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I’m a firm believer that social media is under the portfolio of Visitor Services. As an ideal, yes, it would be great to have customer service available through all the potential networks.
It’s a rare case to have someone “on” all the time, or even able to respond in a timely manner outside of business hours. I’d be curious to know which DMO’s are able to effectively do that.