This is the eighth in an ongoing series of Inns and Lodging using social media to help their businesses. If you missed the last interview, please visit Q and A with The Brewster House Bed and Breakfast on using social media on using social media or for more interviews visit Marketing For Lodging (towards the bottom)
Address: Regione Valloria 28 15011 Acqui Terme (AL) Piemonte Italia
Blog Address: http://www.creativestructures.blogspot.com
How long have you been using social media?
About two years.
Of the social media venues out there, which do you like the most?
Probably Twitter, It’s the easiest for quick communication, although I spend more time on FB.
Of the social media venues out there, which do you use the most?
It’s a tossup between the two. (twitter and FB)
Of the social media venues out there, which do you feel you get the most from in terms in terms of SEO (search engine optimization)?
Probably through facebook, although I have not really looked closely at it. Also I am active on several travel forums, so those help as well.
Of the social media venues out there, which do you feel you get the most from in terms of business and personal branding?
Difficult to say. I would think that in twitter lies the best potential to get the brand out there, but is it the amount of time I spend on it worth it? Not so sure.
Of the social media venues out there, which do you feel you get the most from in terms of actual ROTI (return on time investment) business?
In comparison to the time it takes, again, not so easy to judge, at least in the beginning. I feel that if I would break through with twitter, it would get me more bookings. By break through, I mean get followers coming to me without having to follow, really working the system — but the amount of time it would take me on Twitter to do that is prohibitive right now.
How long did it take you to feel comfortable using social media?
I resisted both FB and twitter for years. But when I started I was comfortable relatively quickly — within weeks.
Do you market your property on social media channels? and if so which ones?
Only indirectly. I hate pushy — either in person or in the cyber world. I try to tell what I do in a way that will speak to people and tell them who I am.
If you use social media for things besides advertising, which ones do you use for other aims, i.e. twitter for making connections rather then advertising or a blog to be informative to guests and future guests.
I use twitter and FB to keep up with friends in the business and out of it both. Many of my guests become friends, and it is the easiest way to keep up with everyone.
How many hours on average a day do you spend using social media (or per week or per month)?
Probably an hour a day, but sometimes two or more.
Do you feel the time you have spent using social media has been worth it? And why?
From directly bookings? absolutely not. I have maybe gotten two bookings in the last year. From the perspective of awareness, probably yes. People might link my blog after they have found me on Twitter. I think that is more of the value, the links that can come as a result. I, however, always feel like I am behind — like I should be doing more, optimizing my time more on line, etc.
I have to say too that I am decidedly low tech. I am constantly racing to catch up because I literally know almost nothing about IT, even though i spend probably three hours a day on line. I would love to learn more and maximize all of that time instead of being frustrated. I suppose there are many small businesses like me, who use the internet for marketing but only know what they have to know to survive, instead of really being able to fly with social media…
If you’re an inn using social media and you have felt that social media has helped your business positively, send me an email at email@example.com and I’ll pop you over the questions. I’ll be doing at least one feature a week for the I can forsee ongoing future. Cheers!