There’s a lot of talk about how to develop a social media strategy for your hotel, but one aspect to keep in mind when developing this strategy is to monitor how your competitors are doing. While the majority of your efforts should be focused on your own property, you also want to make sure you are eyeing what your competitors are doing well. This insight can help you create better posts and possibly even connect better with your target audience.
Facebook has an excellent feature called ‘Pages to Watch’ that allows you to easily track 5 or more of your competitors. Facebook only allows access to this features on active pages who have at least 100 fans, so if you have under 100 fans, you can either work to organically grow your Facebook likes or run Facebook ads to increase your likes.
To access Facebook’s ‘Pages to Watch’, simply visit your page’s Insights section and scroll to the bottom of the page. Once pages are added, Facebook will rank all pages including your own to give you an idea of where you stand amongst your competitors. Factors used to determine your rank include total page likes, the percentage that your page likes have increased from the last week, the number of posts this week, and the number of engagement (likes, comments, shares) from the last week. This section gives you a general overview of how your Facebook page is performing compared to your competitors, and let’s you know where you may need to step up your game.
For a more insightful look at your competitor’s posts, click ‘Posts’ on the left column when you are in the Insights section of your page. Next, at the top center of the page click ‘Top Posts from Pages You Watch.’ You will see a list of five competitors, ranked in order based on who had the best performing post of the week. Though you have the ability to watch more than five pages, you will only be able to see five of your competitors who’s posts performed the best. In this section, you will be shown:
- Name of your competitor’s page- This is a link that you are able to click in order to view their full page.
- The date and time the post was published (will be within the last week)
- The actual post- This is clickable as well and will show you the full post
- Total engagements- this includes total likes, shares, and comments. If you are interested in viewing the exact number of each of these, you can click on the post.
All of your post metrics will be displayed under this section, so you can compare how your posts performed against your top performing competitors. If their posts are performing better than yours, you can use this feature to determine whether it has to do with the topics they are choosing, the writing, whether or not they are running ads, or another factor.
It only takes a few minutes to add pages to watch, and since the feature gives you information for the past week, you can designate a specific day each week to take a look at how your competitors are performing. Before you begin using the features, first determine who your competitors are. These should be other hotels who have the same target market as your hotel and are in your local area. For example, if your hotel were to lose a customer to a nearby hotel, which ones would they be?
Though you wouldn’t want to outright copy a competitor’s strategy, you may be able to gain some ideas on what topics to post about and what types of topics garner more engagements, which can ultimately lead to you communicating better with your target market.
Arielle Sanchez is the Digital Media Manager at E-Marketing Associates, where she writes personalized copy for hotel websites, assists independent hotels with social media, and blogs regularly for the E-Marketing Associates Blog. E-Marketing Associates works exclusively with independent hotels and builds innovative online marketing products that increase direct bookings and drive top-line revenue.