We’ll go into more detail about how to optimize all your timeshare resort’s different social media platforms in future posts. But first let’s take a general look at the overall plan one social network at a time.
Your social media efforts should be focused on the following channels: your blog, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, Google+, Instagram and Linkedin. In addition but with less focus Periscope, Vine.
These recommendations make a great starting point for building your own social media strategy. A lot of the time, we’re talking about the very minimum you should be doing, so feel free to put in that extra effort if you’re eager for results.
- Create great content that is interesting and varied. Keep your audience engaged. Photos and videos work best.
- Post to your resort’s Facebook page at least 4 times a week, with a maximum of 10 times. (Too much can get annoying and is as bad as too little.)
- Use your resort’s Facebook page to like, share and comment on other pages, and not just under your name. At the top right of your Facebook page, click the dropdown arrow and you’ll see ‘Use facebook as:…’ Select your resort’s page and you’re good to go.
- Get your resort’s staff actively involved and engaging with your owners, guests and general audience. Sharing, liking, commenting, and so on.
- Staff should also engage and befriend owners and guests, tagging them and liking their posts, especially ones about your resort.
- Create guidelines and code of conduct for your staff to follow when on Facebook.
- Advertise your Facebook page offline where possible.
- Add promotions, competitions and event information to your Facebook page.
- Try pay-per-click targeted advertising via Facebook.
- Post about your in-house marketing programs.
- Make and follow lists or keyword searches for relevant things like your destination and local events.
- Follow and engage with your owners, guests, local businesses, potential partners and the media in general, especially the travel media.
- Again: engage, engage, engage. 70% of your tweets should be replies and retweets.
- Schedule your tweets so that they are spaced apart. Buffer is a good way to do that.
- Publish at least 5 tweets each working day.
- Follow accounts related to timeshare, travel and your local area. Also follow back any relevant accounts that follow you.
- Tweet your promotions, competitions, events and information updates. Consider paying to promote a tweet when you have something particularly important to say.
- Encourage your staff to get tweeting from their personal accounts, as part of building their personal brands. Offer some basic training and lay out some basic rules of conduct, such as staying away from ‘hot’ topics such as racism, religion and politics.
- Promote your Twitter hashtags offline at your resort and elsewhere.
- Update your blog 2-3 times each week, with one post a week being the bare minimum.
- Plan your core blog content a month in advance, adding in extra blog posts later as the need arises. Make sure your content is in line with your resort’s overall marketing strategy.
- Choose a number of relevant categories that you will use to organise your posts.
- Make sure each post has keywords, links and photos or video.
- Add new photos regularly, at least 20 a week.
- Vary your photos the same way you vary your subject topics on other media. Take pictures of your resort, your guests (with their permission, of course), the surrounding area, events, restaurants, sports and all the other things that will interest your audience, as we mentioned above.
- Add your resort’s photos to groups and galleries. Also, write captions and tag all your photos. Geotag your Flickr photos, so people can find you.
- Comment on other people’s photos. It’s a great way to engage on Flickr.
- Add Flickr email to your iPhone so you can publish photos straight away.
- Upload high resolution images and choose licensing options that allow others to use the photos in print, giving you proper credit.
- Consider investing in a GoPro or similar camera that takes quality photo and video, while also using professionals for important events.
- Make sure that key members of your resort’s staff are on LinkedIn and engaging with potential partners and other businesses.
- Make sure all business contacts are invited to follow your resort’s LinkedIn page and your staff’s profiles.
- Update your LinkedIn profile with fresh content and news. This platform is more business focused, so tailor your content and style accordingly.
- Join groups and start groups related to timeshare, your local destination and other relevant topics.
- Connect and follow other resorts, media and personalities.
- Take interesting and unusual photos that appeal to Instagram users.
- Add at least one photo each day.
- Follow other Instagrammers, media and international travel bloggers.
- Keep a video camera handy and make some fun and engaging clips whenever the opportunity arises.
- Upload at least four videos each month.
- Again, go for variety: guests (funny), events, testimonial interviews and so on.
- Subscribe to other channels, again including media, potential business partners and local organisations.
- Comment on other people’s videos. Share other people’s videos and create playlists.
- Promote your videos in your blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter and other accounts.
- Update your Google+ at least 10 times a week with photos, videos , posts and so on.
- Add other people to your circles. Comment and share their posts.
- Use hashtags on posts to help Google index the posts.
- Add short live videos. Share them on Twitter. Get your resort staff involved.
Vine (NEW and optional)
- Add 6 second looping videos to Vine. These can be of guests, staff, events and other interesting things.
- Remember, on Vine it’s just 6 seconds, so you have to get to the point immediately.
- Engage with other Vine users and look around to get a feel of the style of videos the community enjoys.
All this essential social media engagement has to become part and parcel of your marketing operations.
Yes, that’s a great deal of work to keep up regularly, but it’s all in a day’s work for your Resort Community Manager. If your resort doesn’t currently employ one, you should try and fill that role as quickly as possible and manage as best you can in the meantime.