Sales & Marketing: Applying Brand Karma Analytics
[This is the fourth posting in our article series, Making Social Media an Asset for Your Hotel. The previous article is available here.]
Sales and marketing staff can benefit from their property’s social media by using the Drivers, Trends, Personas and Social Media Management reports within Brand Karma. Instructions on applying each report are explained below.
The Drivers Report: Discover Key Strengths, Weaknesses, & Differentiators
The Drivers report summarizes the most prominent topics being discussed about a hotel or brand across the Internet. A Director of Sales & Marketing (DOSM) should gain a deep understanding of the positive topics (compliments) in this report. These can be viewed by clicking the “Compliments” radio button to the right of the bar chart. We recommend a DOSM pay particular attention to the long tail of the bar chart. (Note that the long tail of the chart is the section of the x-axis containing the fifth through thirtieth drivers. This is typically where the most distinctive and niche topics appear, which are useful in attracting the micro-segments of hotel guests with specific needs.) Additionally, a DOSM should use the “Differentiators” radio button to identify specific features and elements that are seen within social media as unique selling points relative to the competition. Differentiators can also be easily spotted versus the hotel’s competitive set by referencing the Competition report and identifying the drivers with a green indicator.
These topics and terms are useful in creatively increasing online traffic and conversion to a hotel’s web site. Because the long tail terms show a DOSM what previous travelers already appreciate about a hotel in social media, these terms can be leveraged in search engine optimization (SEO) and paid search (SEM) activities. Additionally, these niche keywords can be used to enhance your web site copy, marketing collateral, and even with interactions with guests at a property to underscore why a hotel is unique.
Towards this end, Brand Karma provides details in its Trends and Competition reports that show where your hotel ranks relative to its competitive set in terms of strengths (indicated in green), weaknesses (indicated in red), and undifferentiated features (indicated in yellow).
The Trends Report: Gaining or Losing Edge Against the Competition?
The Trends report provides a historical look at the hotel’s scores in social media, graphing the hotel’s data versus its competitive set over the previous 12 months. For a DOSM, this report provides a time-based view of the property’s differentiators versus the competition. After identifying and understanding the hotel’s differentiators, a DOSM should monitor the performance of these items on the Trends report over time. This can be accomplished using the dropdown menu to the right of the bar chart. By selecting a particular KPI (i.e.: Satisfaction or Awareness) or a particular driver (i.e.: Arrival or Internet Access), a DOSM sees how her hotel performs (the black line) versus the hotel’s competitors (the orange line). These trends should be monitored to understand whether a differentiator is holding its ground (i.e.: space between the black and orange lines remains the same or increases), or whether the competitors are beginning to catch up (i.e.: the space between the black and orange lines is decreasing). Differentiators that are losing ground to the competition must be addressed via marketing or operational action as quickly as possible.
In the same way, drivers that are not presently differentiators, or those that are underperforming the competition should be tracked as the hotel attempts to improve these drivers relative to the competition. In this scenario, the DOSM should look for the space between the black and orange lines to continually decrease, indicating the hotel is closing the gap on the competition in this area.
The Personas Report: Which Demographics are Most Satisfied?
The Personas report shows the demographic breakdown of a hotel’s reviewers and why they stayed at the property. This report helps a DOSM understand how your reviewer demographics compare to your actual demographics, and how favorable each demographic segment was in their reviews (simply click on any segment in the top pie chart to see a sentiment breakdown of that segment below). In most cases, a property’s largest demographic segment within social media will be the Leisure segment, as leisure travelers tend to write more reviews after their stays. Note that the Personas report almost always contains a segment of uncategorized reviewers as not every reviewer specifies his reason for stay. The takeaway is that a DOSM who understands her hotel’s demographics in social media will be more effective in driving satisfaction with those segments of influential guests.
The Social Media Management Report: A Picture (or Video) is Worth 1000 Bookings
The Social Media Management report tracks mentions of your hotel on the influential social networks, blogging, and news sites. We recommend a DOSM stay closely in tune with this report to ensure that the way her hotel is perceived within social media is consistent with the hotel’s brand message.
The Social Media Management report is also useful for PR and Communications Directors. Following major events or onsite press activities at a hotel, this report is effectively used as a property’s social media clipping service to track press and social media mentions after a campaign.
And with that, we wrap up our Sales & Marketing overview of social media. Next up – Revenue Management.