Category Archives: Blog and Social Media

Fantastic Fill in the Blanks Social Media

the words "Fantastic Fill-in-the-Blanks on Social Media" with drawings of laptops and mobile phones

 

Fantastic fill in the blanks social media can definitely attract more traffic to your website.  People love to use their imagination and share it with others online.

Do you remember Mad Libs? Those books filled with one-page stories filled with blanks that invited you to insert your own keywords? They were  invented in 1953 by Leonard Stern and Roger Price, who published the first Mad Libs book themselves in 1958.  It turns out that  these guys were ahead of their time in recognizing the power of the ‘blank’.

 

Promote Activities and Places

Fill in the blanks social media can prompt people to think about activities they would like to do and places they would love to visit.  For example, Disney posted, “If I could spend a day with a Disney character, I would choose _______.”

Promote Events and Contests

Use the post tactic in conjunction with a specific event, such as a holiday.

Fill in the blank contests are great as they have the potential to actually get people thinking. The contest consists of a sentence of paragraph, and your fans are asked to add their own unique perspective by, obviously, filling in the blanks.

Promote Creativity

This is a great way to encourage creative responses as well as to promote engagement with your posts and tweets.  The blanks are essentially ‘platforms’ for people to share their creativity.

  • My favorite way to relax after a long hard day is to _______.
  • _______ always makes me feel inspired.
  • The best afternoon snack of all time is _______.
  • My favorite board game is _______.

Promote Engagement

These types of posts often garner fun and short comments, which then encourage your audience to react and interact.  Share a great photo and a good fill-in-the-blank sentence to inspire your audience to engage with you and your brand.

Fill-in-the-blank posts feel incomplete until they’re engaged with. People love filling in blanks, and the most effective fill-in-the-blank posts are the ones that let fans share their ideas.

a tweet "I'm ready for Spring so I can _________" @bandbblogging with close up of yellow flower with water droplets

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

Make It Relevant

Make fill-in-the-blank posts and tweets relevant to your fans and the space you’re working in to see the best results.

Use fill-in-the-blank posts as a two-pronged engagement tactic: interact with your online community and get to know them better for future marketing campaigns.

More Examples

Fill-in-the-blanks are similar to questions.  They are simple and create engagement.  Some samples of these are:

  • My favorite social media site is _______________.
  • I’ve lived in ___________cities in my life.
  • I laugh every time I think about ______.

Be Very Careful

Have fun with these, but one piece of advice is to be careful that you don’t leave the blank too open ended for a potentially bad response. Be careful what you make a fill in the blank because people can turn it ugly.  That is what happened when the German grocery chain posted this:

“I became an ALDI-lover when I tasted _______ for the first time.”

Make It Simple

Tweet out a straightforward question that’s easy to answer.  When questions are short and simple, it’s easy for followers to respond because they don’t need to spend a lot of time thinking about their answer or trying to fit a longer reply to fit the Twitter character limit (or shorter if you want to include a hashtag).

Get Your Followers To Think

Fill-in-the-blanks social media gets your followers thinking and you challenge to them to show their creative side. The key to making fill-in-the-blank tweets work for your company is to relate them to your followers’ interests.  Then you will have success!

 

Why Blogging Can Boost Your Bottom Line

blog cloud post cloud boost your bottom line

 

Blogging can boost your bottom line. Wondering how to blog great content for your ideal guests? First, you must know who your are trying to attract. Second, you must know what content your audience wants. Third, you must consistently share that content.

 


Profile Your Audience

Create a clear picture of who is reading your blog. If you are just getting started, develop a picture of who you want to be your readers. Describe the characteristics of your audience:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Geographic location
  • Lifestyle
  • Occupation
  • Education level
  • Marital status
  • Interests and hobbies
  • Income range

Share Great Content Frequently

Clearly show your readers the type of content they’ll find on your website. You can write about it on your website, in blog posts, and on social media. Make sure you satisfy your readers’ immediate interests, but leave them wanting to read more. Read your posts aloud before publishing them. Always pay attention to spelling, grammar, and sentence structure. Use bullet points for easy scanning.

Attract Your Readers

Start by having a catchy blog title. I recommend using the Headline Analyzer tool by Co-Schedule. Use keywords that might turn up in a search query. However, be careful not to mislead your readers with a title that doesn’t fit what your content is really about. Share multimedia (including images and video). Blog about trending topics. See Twitter for “Trending Hashtags.” Also, check Google Trends for more ideas. Share pictures of your food and recipes for guest favorites.

Serve Your Readers

Share with them detailed information about your local area including its activities, attractions, and events. Share content that appeals to your target audience. For example, if you host romantic couples, blog about the most romantic restaurants in your local area.

Give your readers what they need (blog how to articles). Also, give them what they want (useful advice as well as timeless tips and tricks). Create content worth referencing. For example, share useful information for traveling guests.

Track Your Results

Using Google Analytics, you can track the number of visitors who read your blog. Pay attention to which posts get the most views. Note the content that attracts the best response from your readers. Content also can boost your bottom line.

Compare Your Blog to Your Competition

Look at other hospitality providers to see what content they offer. Specifically, look at their search engine rankings and the amount of comments they receive.

Before you do that, understand what you blog about, the topics you cover, and your most frequent keywords. Then use those descriptive keywords (+ the word blog) to locate blogs that have similar content.

Factors to Evaluate Your Competition

  • Writing style (casual, formal, humorous)
  • The frequency of their blog posting
  • How much content their share each time
  • When they publish and share blog posts
  • What outside links do they have
  • Their use of multimedia (photos, audio, video)
  • Which blog posts get a lot of comments
  • Topics of blog posts that get very few comments

In Summary

Profile your audience to know who you want as your blog readers. Stay on their radar by sharing valuable content frequently. Attract and serve your readers. Track your results and compare to your blog competition by evaluating them on several factors. Finally, know that when you regularly share content you are becoming even more visible in the search engines. This can boost your bottom line.

 

How to Develop a Winning Content Calendar

2020 content calendar

 

 

Developing a content calendar is an effective way to plan how your bed and breakfast communicates with guests. A winning content calendar is one that leads to more views, likes, shares, bookings, sales, and revenue!
 

Your Ideal Guests

First, think about who you are targeting–your ideal guests. When you know who you are trying to attract, then you can think about what they want to see. Why do people choose your accommodations over your competition? Reasons include your location, their lifestyle, your reputation, and much more.

Monthly Content Calendar

I recommend developing a content calendar for every month of the year. Think about the main messages and topics you want to communicate to potential guests. It is important to stay consistent for branding purposes. Be clear on what you’re about.

Show Consistent Themes

While sharing a variety of content is excellent, you want to convey around 10 consistent themes (this is just a suggested number). This is what you want to be known for. This allows potential guests to get to know you and your accommodations. As you draw followers, you can engage with them in a variety of ways including asking them questions.

Once you’ve identified your “Big 10” then you can plan your calendar. This will depend upon your location as well as what you want to emphasize about your B&B. Consider focusing on any of the following topics:

  • Accommodations: show what makes your inn uniquely awesome
  • Activities: things to do inside and outside your inn
  • Amenities: such as what’s included in every guest room
  • Community: local events, how you contribute, etc.
  • Events: private events you host like parties and weddings
  • Food: share delicious looking pictures of what you share with guests
  • Holidays/special days: major holidays, seasons, fun holidays, food holidays
  • Local area: attractions, local businesses, restaurants, shopping, venues, etc.
  • Niche: green leader, pet-friendly, romantic, vegetarian, etc.
  • Packages: consider having a variety of options including seasonal packages
  • People: owner(s), innkeeper(s), guests (with their permission)
  • Promotions: products, services, partners, contests, etc.
  • Quotes: your own, funny, motivational, or thoughtful
  • Reviews: share positive guest reviews
  • Tips/Trivia: travel tips, did you know?…

Variety Is The Key

It’s not about being perfect. It’s about being social. It’s a good idea to space your posts out so that there is a variety.

Think about the pictures, videos, and books you may want to share. By planning ahead of time, you will save time and be more consistent. For 30 posts in 10 categories, you need 3 posts in each category.

Be sure to store your images all together. Give specific details that describe the image. For example, “Breakfast French Toast Guest Smiling” In addition to any professional photography you have, you can create your own images. Be sure to use good lighting.

Blog Posts

At a minimum, you should be blogging at least once a month. Each blog post is another way for someone to come to your website. Depending upon what they type in search engines, you can become known for your information about something in your area. Be sure to tell people about your inn in part of each post. Tie it into the blog post topic.

E-Newsletter Updates

Consider sending an e-newsletter on a monthly basis (or every other week). The key to doing that is to (with their permission) enter the email addresses of your guests as they stay with you. In addition, you can ask them to opt into your e-newsletters on the home page of your website. That way you can develop the connection you have with previous guests as well as prospective guests.

Social Media Presence

Determine how many posts you will create for each social media network each month. Consider having a presence on networks like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube. You do not have to regularly use all of them, but at least have your profile and one post sharing your name, location, and website address. I recommend choosing to regularly post on the social media networks your target audience uses most.

For example, the following are a selection of special days from the 2020 Calendar Year.

January

  • 1) New Year’s Day
  • 5) National Bird Day
  • 6) National Cuddle Up Day
  • 14) Dress Up Your Pet Day
  • 21) Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
  • 28) Fun at Work Day

February

  • 2) Groundhog Day
  • 14) Valentine’s Day
  • 17) Random Acts of Kindness Day
  • 18) Drink Wine Day
  • 20) Love Your Pet Day
  • 25) Mardi Gras/Fat Tuesday

March

  • 3) Day of Unplugging
  • 6) Oreo Day
  • 11) Napping Day
  • 14) Pi Day
  • 16) World Sleep Day
  • 17) St. Patrick’s Day

April

  • 1) April Fool’s Day
  • 3) Don’t Go To Work Unless It’s Fun Day
  • 7) National Beer Day
  • 11) National Pet Day
  • 12) Easter
  • 22) Earth Day

May

  • 4) Star Wars Day
  • 5) Cinco de Mayo
  • 11) Eat What You Want Day
  • 12) Mother’s Day
  • 25) Memorial Day
  • 25) National Wine Day

June

  • 1) National Donut Day
  • 16) Father’s Day
  • 19) National Kissing Day
  • 20) First Day of Summer / Summer Solstice
  • 21) National Selfie Day
  • 30) Social Media Day

July

  • 1) International Joke Day
  • 4) Independence Day
  • 7) Chocolate Day
  • 15) National Ice Cream Day
  • 17) World Emoji Day
  • 30) International Day of Friendship

August

  • 1) National Girlfriends Day
  • 9) Book Lover’s Day
  • 10) National S’mores Day
  • 16) National Tell a Joke Day
  • 20) National Lemonade Day
  • 26) National Dog Day

September

  • 1) International Bacon Day
  • 2) Labor Day
  • 19) Oktoberfest Begins
  • 21) First Day of Fall
  • 27) World Tourism Day
  • 29) Coffee Day

October

  • 1) World Vegetarian Day
  • 3) National Techies Day
  • 6) World Smile Day
  • 19) Sweetest Day
  • 27) Make a Difference Day
  • 31) Halloween

November

  • 1) World Vegan Day
  • 11) Veterans Day
  • 15) America Recycles Day
  • 26) Thanksgiving
  • 28) Small Business Saturday
  • 30) Cyber Monday

December

  • 1) Giving Tuesday
  • 18) Bake Cookies Day
  • 19) National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day
  • 24) Christmas Eve
  • 25) Christmas Day
  • 31) New Year’s Eve

Post With Purpose

The most successful people consistently post with purpose. Even if that purpose is to convey how fun your inn is! It is important that your marketing has a strategy. Developing a content calendar is an excellent marketing strategy.

If you’d rather be serving your guests than blogging or being on social media, I get that! You’re welcome to contact Kristi Dement of Bed & Breakfast Blogging for a free 20-minute phone conversation.

How to Organize an Effective Content Strategy

The word "strategy" Effective content strategy begins with identifying your target market. Who is most likely to want what you offer? For bed and breakfasts, much of this depends upon why guests are visiting your area. Typically, those who stay at B&B inns pick the area first, then their accommodations. Think about why people come to your area (including your weather and local attractions). Additionally, reflect on what your inn provides that others do not (such as your amenities, breakfasts, and the events that you host).

Use Keywords To Attract Your Target Market

Know who you are trying to attract (your target market).  Moreover, pick a diverse range of keywords related to their interests.  For example, list out relevant keywords describing your:

  • Amenities (“game room” or “tearoom”)
  • Breakfasts (“farm fresh produce” or “accommodates special dietary needs”)
  • Ideal guests (“adventure seeking” or “romantic couples”)
  • Leisure activities (“antique shopping” or “wine tours”)
  • Local area (“mountain views” or “business conferences”)
  • Packages (“girlfriends’ getaway” or “honeymoon package”)
  • Retreats (“writers retreat” or “yoga retreat”)
  • Seasons/times of the year (“fall foliage” or “Valentine’s Day”)
  • Services (“catering” or “spa services”)
  • Uniqueness (“historic” or “pet friendly”)
  • Your other businesses (“gift shop” or “restaurant”)

Content Creates Opportunity

The content you offer is an opportunity for them to learn more about you. In other words, stand out (clarify your unique selling points) from your competition (other places of hospitality). For instance, guest packages are a great way to attract people who appreciate that you make plans for them (such as floral arrangements, premium chocolates, restaurant gift certificates, tickets to concerts or sporting events). Furthermore, people are willing to pay more for something that is already planned and included.

Your content includes what you share on your website, blog, brochures, emails, social media, and advertising. Your content formats include articles, videos, infographics, short reports, and more. Share pictures, videos, and stories of what happens at your B&B (with permission from guests). Guests want to know what to expect before they arrive!

Develop A Strong Reputation

As your guests experience your hospitality, you can develop a great reputation (from word of mouth, reviews, and press). Be sure to know what is being said about you and your inn online. Respond appropriately and promptly to all guest reviews (how you handle any criticism you receive speaks volumes to others).

Content Answers Questions

To save time and be consistent, answer frequently asked questions (FAQs) in your content. This can include estimated drive time to popular destinations and your process for guests to check in and check out.

  • What inspired your business? (such as a person or mission)
  • What AHA! moments has your company had? (major lightbulbs)
  • How has your business evolved? (process of changes)
  • How do you feel about your business, our customers, and ourselves? (state goals)
  • What’s a unique way to tell your story? (be creative)
  • What do you consider normal that other folks would think is cool? (stories from guests)
  • How will your company make a difference? (ex: eco-friendly)
  • Why should your company matter to guests? (what is in it for them?)

The more information you provide on your website and the more questions you answer, the more likely web visitors are to act. They will contact you, read more of your website, follow you on social media, and book a room. Be sure to attract more guests with calls to action.  Encourage them to contact you, connect on social media, and book now.

Blog Post Content

  • Behind the scenes information (including photos of staff and fun facts about them)
  • Breakfast (share images, recipes, and details about how you serve breakfast)
  • Events (that your inn will be hosting or local events)
  • History of your B&B (such as its founders and current owners/innkeepers)
  • Holidays (how your inn celebrates specific holidays)
  • Improvements (such as any redecorating, remodeling, or added amenities
  • Incentives (for frequent stays or guest referrals)
  • Occasions (celebrating anniversaries and birthdays or hosting reunions)
  • Problems you solve (such as adding enjoyment and reducing stress)
  • Professional memberships (like Select Registry or a state B&B association)
  • Reasons why guests love to stay (think about the compliments you receive)
  • Recommendations of local businesses (who may return the favor)
  • Reviews from previous guests (include quotes)
  • Room information (including pictures, list of amenities, reason for its name)
  • Specials like mid-week discounts or savings for specific groups (like emergency workers, senior citizens, and veterans)
  • Tips about your local area (including restaurants and attractions)
  • Your own Top 10 List (that relates to your B&B or local area)

Benefits of Regularly Adding Content

One of the most important aspects of blogging, is to consistently do it. The search engines reward fresh content by making it more visible online. They give preference to websites which continually add new information.  In addition, a blog post is one more indexed page on your website. Thus, it signals to the search engine spiders that your website is active.

Plus, you are keeping in touch with people and staying on their radar. Reminding previous guests about why they should come back again and compelling new people to visit for the very first time is an effective content strategy.

Become The Local Expert

Bed and breakfasts with blogs establish themselves as being an authority on hospitality and their local community. By offering helpful, travel-friendly advice, bed and breakfasts can get the attention of those wanting to know more about your local area while also telling others what makes your inn an ideal accommodations choice.

The effort you put it now will pay off well into the future because people will be able to view your blog posts years from now.  Providing valuable content means your content will spread.

Share In Social Media

In addition to sharing content on your own website, you can create content for other websites, social media, and issue press releases to attract media attention. Blog posts can be shared in social media to expose yourself to a whole new audience.

Let guests know how to connect with your bed and breakfast on other social media websites. When you share your blog on social media, this lets people know more about you and your bed and breakfast inn.  Have a presence on one or more of the following websites can make a big difference in your visibility online.

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Linked In
  • Pinterest
  • Snapchat
  • Twitter
  • YouTube

The more information you provide on your website and the more questions you answer, the more likely web visitors are to contact you, read more of your website, follow you on social media, and book a room. These are all profitable results from an effective content strategy.

Editorial Calendar

One way to organize your content is to create an editorial calendar. This is where you decide what content you will create (earlier in this post is suggested ideas for blog posts and questions to answer), in what format (images, text, video, etc.), schedule how often you will create it (such as daily, weekly, or monthly), when you will create it (specify the day and time), and where you will share it (ads, blog, website, social media, etc.).

Increase Your Visibility and Profitability

Do not forget the power of blogging to become more visible in the search engines. In addition, the power of video to highlight your B&B and local attractions. Lastly, the power of social media to spread your message. By following this advice, you will take attract more guests to your bed and breakfast as well as position yourself as an expert on your local area. Thus, having an effective content strategy is key to the success of your business.

 

What To Post on Social Media In The Fall Season

tall trees with orange leaves, red tree, close up of pumpkin and gourds, fall mums, fall trees on paved road

 

Your social media in the fall can be as creative as you make it. Looking for inspiration? How about changing your social media headers to be fall-themed? What about having Fall-related Pinterest boards? Wondering what to post in social media? The following suggests some festive fall content ideas.

 

Share Fall Activities, Events, & Places

Mention Apple Picking, Colorful Autumn Trails, Fall Parades, Farmers Markets, Fun Runs, Harvest Festivals, Hayrides, Leaf Peeping, and other things local.

 

Share Fall Decor

Feature items inside and outside of your inn, such as seasonal blankets, candles, flowers, pillows, towels, wreaths, & more.

 

Share Fall Jokes, Puns, & Quotes 

(Feel free to improve upon these suggestions!)

  • “Fall in love.”
  • “I only have pies for you…”
  • “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” (L.M. Montgomery)
  • “Keep calm and watch the leaves fall.”
  • “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the Fall.” (F. Scott Fitzgerald)
  • “Pumpkin spice & everything nice.”
  • “Spice-tacular!”
  • “This weather is un-be-leaf-able!”
  • “You really autumn know…”
  • Q: “How do you fix a broken pumpkin?” | A: “With a pumpkin patch.”
  • Q: “What do you call a tree that doubts Autumn?” | A: “Disbe-leaf.”
  • Q: “What is the ratio of a pumpkin’s circumference to its diameter?” | A: “Pumpkin Pi.”

 

Share Fall Packages & Promotions

Direct attention to your Autumn packages and promotions that include Fall-related activities, foods, & events.

 

Share Fall Pictures & Videos

Show guests exactly what they will see when they visit. If relevant to your area, give them a local link to check your current Fall Foliage reports. You do not want to be in a situation where a guest is arrives disappointed because a picture you shared that was taken from a previous season or during a different time in the season (and the colors are not as vibrant).

 

Share Fall Recipes

Many of the following mouth-watering recipe titles come from Delish (or you can search online for these). Better yet, make your own famous secret homemade recipes for guests!

  • Apple Cinnamon French Toast
  • Apple Cinnamon Mini Monkey Breads
  • Apple Crisp Cheesecake
  • Apple Dumplings
  • Caramel Apples
  • Caramel Apple Crescent Roll Bites
  • Caramel Apple Pie
  • Carrot Zucchini Apple Bread
  • Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake
  • Churro Chips with Caramel Sauce
  • Cinnamon Apple Cake
  • Honey Pumpkin Spice Granola Bars
  • Maple Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
  • Maple Walnut Banana Bread
  • Pecan Pie
  • Perfect Apple Crumble
  • Puffy Pumpkin Waffles
  • Pumpkin Apple Muffins
  • Pumpkin Bread
  • Pumpkin Brown Sugar Pecan Pancakes
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownie Bars
  • Pumpkin Chiffon Pie
  • Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie
  • Pumpkin Cinnamon Roll Pancakes
  • Pumpkin Coffee Cake
  • Pumpkin Dump Cake
  • Pumpkin Pie Granola
  • S’mores Pumpkin Cupcakes
  • Sweet Potato Cheesecake
  • Sweet Potato Cookies
  • Whole Grain Apple Nut Muffins
  • Whole Wheat Pumpkin Waffles

 

Share Fall Tips & Tricks

Suggest costume options, decorating tips, and party ideas are just a few of the tips and tricks to share with your social media in the fall.

 

Your only limit is your imagination. You can also ask seasonal questions to spark social media conversation. The key is to make it fun and make it about them and the experience they will have if they visit you during the fall season.

No time or desire to consistently post in social media? Contact me, Kristi Dement of Bed & Breakfast Blogging, to help you with your social media, blogging, and email marketing.

 

10 Terrific Twitter Tips for B&B’s

10 twitter tips

 

Did you know that there are around 335 million monthly active Twitter users?  Did you know that 500 million tweets are sent each day?  Most of us know that Twitter is a popular social media website. In fact, a single day’s worth of tweets would fill a 10 million page book!

 

 

Here are some quick tips so you can get the best out of using Twitter to promote your bed and breakfast inn:

1) Know your audience in order to target your message to the right people.  You want to write to appeal to your specific market–not everyone.  What kind of bed and breakfast guests would you like to attract?    

  • Be pet friendly if you want guests with pets
  • Be couple friendly and require kids to be a minimum age
  • Promote being healthy by not allowing smoking on all grounds
  • Accommodate guests with allergies or restricted diets when you cook breakfasts
  • Reach out to those getting married or renewing their vows with ceremonies
  • Provide spa services to guests who like to be pampered
  • Offer extra amenities such as hot tubs or private balcony views

2) Regularly spend time listening to the needs and wants of your target market.  What would ease their pain and make their lives better?

  • Need time to get away from it all
  • Want to relax with a loved one
  • Want to visit a local relative without inconveniencing them
  • Like to visit tourist spots in your area
  • Want personal touch of a B&B versus big hotel

3) Have strategies behind who you follow.  You do not have to follow everyone. Be selective and show your audience what they like to see. 

  • Travel tips (give them useful information)
  • Scenic pictures of your area (entice them to visit)
  • Baby animals (who does not like baby animals?)
  • Recipes (you may even offer a cooking class to your guests)
  • Local activities (show them what they can do in your area)

4) Have a consistent presence online.  Tweet at least four to six times per day if possible.

5) Provide useful content based on your brands’ goals.  Selling should not be the focus.

  • Tweet powerful quotes
  • Update readers about your area events
  • Share meaningful stories

6) Tweet with images.  People are visual creatures and tweets with pictures are more than twice as likely to be retweeted.  Images can convey more than words do. 

  • Share pictures of the bedrooms in your bed and breakfast
  • Tweet pictures of your outdoor views including landscaping
  • Share pictures of your delightful breakfasts and goodies made
  • Share pictures of local community events including concerts and sports games

7) Be active on other social media channels and have a blog on your website.  Blogs provide fresh content the search engines love.  More online connections come from having a strong presence on other social media websites.

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Linked In
  • Pinterest

8) Use hashtags (#) so the reach of your tweets spreads to people searching for that term. Use trending hashtags (labeled “trends”) on the bottom left.  Make sure the hashtags are relevant to the tweet and two hashtags is plenty.

  • Newsworthy events
  • Celebrities
  • Holidays (including national food holidays)
  • This day in history
  • Sports
  • Trending area activities

9) Always have a call to action.  Know what you want them to do after they read your tweet.

10) Monitor your Twitter results with other websites.  Some Twitter tools are available for free or to use on a free trial basis.  Try them out to see which you prefer.

  • Buffer
  • Hootsuite
  • Tweetdeck

When you use these tips consistently, you will see a dramatic increase in your numbers:

  • More Twitter followers
  • More retweets
  • More blog subscribers
  • More guests
  • And more income!

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

Are You Making These Easy Mistakes With Your Bed and Breakfast?

camera next to lap top and social media icons

As a bed and breakfast owner and/or innkeeper, you want your hospitality business to shine. However, there may be some things that you are doing, easy mistakes, that are causing you to lose potential guests who decide to book elsewhere. I’m talking about making mistakes that are relatively straightforward to fix yet are powerful in their results. This post will focus on photography, social media, and website tips.

Photography

Professional photography is essential to increasing your occupancy rates. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the photography on my website done by a professional hospitality photographer?
  • Are the photos attractive and do they inspire others to want to visit?
  • Are my pictures large enough and well lit so people can easily see in the rooms?
  • Do my pictures of indoor rooms also feature the view outside our rooms?
  • Does the image contain anything unsightly (such as a toilet or a trash can)?
  • Does the room look clean and well-organized (and free of clutter)?
  • Were the images made to include extra special touches like a vase of colorful flowers, a delicious-looking tray of tasty food, premium assorted chocolates, and your own branded pottery mugs (or wine glasses)?
  • Have your guests ever said that your pictures do not do your place justice? Or that your inn is so much better in person?
  • Do you feature everything your guests will see?
    • all the guest rooms (with detailed descriptions of their amenities)
    • your bath rooms (if they are attractive and without view of any toilet)
    • all the common rooms for your guests to hang out (including conference and entertainment rooms)
    • the outside of your B&B (including the grounds, any flower or vegetable gardens, private lakes, swimming pools, etc.)
    • anything else open to guests and/or the public on your property (restaurant, spa, tea room, game room, etc.)

Social Media

Social media is a great way for guests to know you more. In addition to sharing images and recipes, you can share blog posts, let people know about upcoming events (at your inn and/or your local area), use #hashtags so your content can be found by others easier, and much more.

Are you regularly sharing social media content so you stay top of mind?

Here is 2019 social media statistics of some of the most popular networks:

  • Facebook: 1.4 billion daily active users, 300 millions photos uploaded daily, 8 billion videos
  • Instagram: 500 million daily active users, 95 million photos uploaded daily
  • LinkedIn: 200 million dailiy active users, 20 million company pages
  • Pinterest: 200 million daily active users, 1 billion boards created, 100 billion pins created
  • Snapchat: 178 million daily active users, 3 billion daily snaps, 10 billion daily videos
  • Twitter: 100 million daily active users, 140 million daily published tweets
  • YouTube: 30 million daily active users, 5 billion views daily, average length of visit 40 minutes

Website

Your website is a window that potential guests can get a sneak peek through before they decide to book. This is an ideal place to showcase everything your inn and local area offers to guests. The following questions are about key website features that will set you apart from other inns.

  • Does your website look professional, clean, and uncluttered (with easy-to-read font and plenty of white space)?
  • Is your website mobile responsive (does it adjust to whatever device it is being viewed from)?
  • Do you have an “About Us” page that details things like the history of your inn (if you own a historical property) and the reason you became an innkeeper?
  • Do you have pictures of every room/suite/cabin that guests can stay in? Do you list the individual amenities of each place?
  • Are the website pictures clickable for people to pin on Pinterest?
  • Do you have visible social media icons that represent everywhere your inn has a presence online?
  • Do you let people know what to expect for breakfast time? What about your complimentary refreshments and goodies?
  • Do you share the logos of professional organizations (like Select Registry and B&B associations) you belong to and major hospitality achievements (like Trip Advisor ratings or awards) you have received?
  • Do you have a Google map and directions for people to find you easily?
  • Do you have a mobile friendly booking engine connected to your website so people can “Book Now”?
  • Do you list your guest packages and specials? How easy can they be added by those booking online?
  • Is there a short (ideally less than five minutes) video of your inn that people can view directly from your website?
  • Do you have a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page that answers questions people often ask you?
  • Do you offer a downloadable vacation guide to your local area?
  • Is it clear to people how they can contact you (phone number, email address and/or contact form)?

In this post we focused on three areas where easy mistakes can happen: your photography, your social media presence, and your website. When these areas are strong, your business will likely be strong, too.

Are You Happy With Your Hospitality Business Results?

Bed and Breakfast Blogging's logo and green paper money with white dollar bill sign on it

How often do you think about your hospitality business results? Is there a nagging feeling like you know you need to do something different, but you aren’t sure what? My clients hate relying on online travel agencies (OTAs) for bookings and they hate losing out to uninsured AirBnB properties, but that’s okay because I’m here to help them consistently and easily attract their ideal guests without having to lose OTA commissions.

I also show them how to generate more revenue by offering profitable guest packages (that save your guests time and attract them to your inn) as well as highlighting your local area (since people often choose their location before they choose their accommodations).

I also know how to write content that attracts people to your website, and more importantly, attracts visitors to your bed and breakfast! My philosophy when it comes to marketing your inn is to showcase your unique amenities and your friendly hospitality (what your guests tell you they love the most).

If you’re looking for instant results, we might not be a fit, because in my experience it is consistent effort that leads you to a better bottom line. My clients recognize the value of promoting other local businesses and events and the advantage of being seen in the media and that’s my style, too.

Are you a hospitality provider that wants to consistently earn more revenue? Do you need to improve your occupancy rate? Would you like to offer guest packages? Ready to boost your business like never before? 

This can all be achieved by putting the needs of your guests first. After all, without guests you just have a property. Let me help you grow your business.

My name is Kristi Dement and I have been working with luxury accommodations since 2013. What’s so special about me? I treat every client’s hospitality business as if it were my own. My success depends upon your success.

Use my contact page, call me at (919) 931-6168, or email me (contact@bedandbreakfastblogging.com). I’m here to get you the hospitality business results you want!

 

How To Find The Best Social Media Content Themes

social media icons

Social media content themes are specific types of content shared via social media. The key is to consistently feature a variety of content that is aimed at attracting your target audience, the type of guests you serve.

No two bed and breakfast inns are alike. However, there are some common social media content themes that work well for a wide range of accommodations.

Amenities

Potential guests like to see what amenities are available to them during their stay. Be sure to show pictures of amenities such as private hot tubs and pool tables.

Behind the Scenes

Since people are naturally curious, showing a sneak peek at something (like preparing for an event) is quite popular. Show details like table settings.

Blog Posts

Always share your blog posts on social media. By regularly blogging and sharing blog posts on social media, you will have a strong online presence.

Branding

Feature what you want your inn to be known for including your logo and slogan which represent your hospitality business. Only share messages you want associated with your brand.

Events

Showcase events that your inn hosts. Whether they are private events or events open to the public, by featuring these events in social media, you draw attention to your inn.

Guest Services

Perhaps you offer a complimentary wine and cheese social time every day. Maybe you offer the option for breakfast to be delivered to guest rooms. Be sure to show evidence of your unique hospitality touches.

Holidays

Show off holiday decor at your inn and share upcoming holiday-related activities in your area. The holidays are a great thing to promote in social media. In fact, having holiday-themed pin boards on Pinterest is really popular.

Hospitality

Extending generous hospitality should be a part of your signature as an accommodations provider. Be sure to share guest testimonials that thank you for your hospitality.

Humor

Everyone likes to laugh now and then. It is okay to feature something funny as long as it is clean and appropriate.

Income Boosters

It is okay to occasionally promote extra products and services your guests can purchase. Be sure to feature images of these products and services to grab the attention of those on social media.

Local attractions

Since people often choose their location BEFORE they choose their lodging, it follows that you should promote your local attractions. Be sure to feature what draws most people to your local area.

Local businesses

To support your fellow local businesses (including restaurants and shops), it is always a good idea to promote (and tag them) in social media. You may want to arrange for exclusive deals your guests receive (like a coupon for free dessert at local restaurant).

Local events

Is your area known annual events that take place every year? Festivals, marathons, performances that regularly occur are great to promote.

Milestones

If you (or your inn or your town) is celebrating a milestone (like 20 years in business), then by all means feature that in your social media. With their permission, you can even feature the milestones your guests are celebrating (such as birthdays, anniversaries, and promotions).

Networking

Social media networking occurs as you interact with your public. This includes previous guests and potential guests as well as local organizations with whom you want to keep in touch (such as your Chamber of Commerce or local Welcome Center).

Niche related topics

This depends upon the types of guests your inn wants to attract. Your inn could be pet-friendly, on a farm, near famous attractions, attract adventure lovers, and/or being historic. Feature those things that attract those types of guests. Pictures are very helpful in attracting potential guests to your social media.

Occasions

These could be special occasions for your overnight guests or private events you host. If there is a specific theme to your celebration (ex: costume party), you can let your social media audience know that as well.

Packages

Feature your guest packages on social media. Show pictures of what comes with each package (like a romantic package that includes rose petals scattered on their bed).

Pictures

Almost every post should have an attractive or attention-getting picture with it. Wow your guests by letting them see what they will experience. Professional photographs are essential to attracting guests.

Press

Be sure to feature any positive press you receive. You can also set up a Press Kit on your website, which lists links to every mention of your inn in the media. You can provide the name of the person to contact for interviews.

Products

Whether you have your own gift shop or sell a handful of things like T-shirts and coffee mugs, you can share the occasional picture of your merchandise. Of course, for every promotional post or tweet, you should have four or five social media shares that are not.

Reputation

Always share something that enhances your reputation such as your high average guest rating. If you are a member of Select Registry or a bed and breakfast association, be sure to include that in social media as well as the logos on your website.

Rooms

Guests love to get a look at where they are staying BEFORE they book their rooms. Professional photographs of all of your rooms and guest bath rooms are essential to attracting guests.

Questions

Engagement happens when people interact with your content. By asking your social media audience questions, you are encouraging them to respond and interact with you.

Quotes

Quotes are always popular. They could be said by a famous or notable person or centered around topics such as love and travel.

Recipes

Be willing to share some of your most popular recipes in social media or provide information if you or your B&B association offers a cookbook. Be sure to share pictures along with your recipes.

Seasonal

You can promote the seasons in social media. These can be outdoor pictures as well as decor pictures. You can offer seasonal packages or specials as well.

Stories

Stories are memorable. When you share your own story (how you became an innkeeper) or the stories of your guests (like the couple who returns every year to your inn), you develop a connection with your readers.

Testimonials

Testimonials are a great way to share the awesome things guests are saying about you (without being the one to brag about it)! People trust reviews from guests who have stayed with you. That is why guest satisfaction is so important.

Trending topics

On Twitter, there is always a list of trending topics. If there is something trending that is positive, and you’d like to mention it, then you can.

Trivia

Make getting to know more about your inn or your location fun with trivia facts you can share in social media. Some social media contest have guests guess how many of something is in the glass jar (like jellybeans) and the closest answer wins something like a free overnight stay.

User-generated content

If a guest shares a great picture they took and gives you permission to post it, then by all means do so and be sure to give them credit for their image. You can also share guest comments you have received. If they wrote their comments in a guest book, you can take a picture of their comments.

Videos

Video content is in high demand. According to the Wall Street Journal, over one billion hours of video are watched on YouTube each day.

Summary

By consistently varying your social media content themes, you will attract (and/or maintain) a high social media following. Innkeepers, would you rather focus on your guests than do social media and/or blogging? Contact Kristi Dement of Bed and Breakfast Blogging today!

 

How to Have a Thriving Bed and Breakfast Biz

snow-covered cabin in woods

Wondering how to have a thriving bed and breakfast biz? Consistently booked rooms AND a profitable hospitality business? Bed and Breakfast Blogging helps make that happen with our professional blogging and social media expertise.

Blogging is a great way for guests (and potential guests) to get to know all about your fabulous bed and breakfast as well as your area attractions. The benefits of blogging include:

  • attracting more people to your bed and breakfast
  • providing fresh content that search engines reward
  • positioning yourself as a top bed and breakfast
  • increasing trust and credibility with your guests

We can tailor keyword specific content for your bed and breakfast website as well as attract more visitors with a regular blog.  We can describe wonderful amenities of your bed and breakfast such as a cozy fireplace, romantic whirlpool tub, and plush king-sized bed as well as a private balcony, spacious swimming pool, and flowering gardens.

Imagine your potential customers reading about your delicious breakfasts and even sharing some of your delicious recipes with them. Bed and Breakfast Blogging can discuss the unique history of your own bed and breakfast. We can even write about your custom packages that may include concert tickets, spa treatments, and tickets to local attractions.  

We take the time to understand what make your accommodations so special so we can communicate that with your audience. We can feature any of the following (and more) that apply to your property:

  • Amenities
  • Art
  • Classes available to guests
  • Cookbook(s)
  • Complimentary (extras that guests receive at no additional charge)
  • Flowers (arrangements and plantings)
  • Gardens and landscaping
  • Gift shop
  • Guest rooms and bathrooms
  • Jacuzzi/hot tub(s)
  • Meeting space
  • Parking space
  • Pools to pool tables
  • Private events (birthdays, anniversaries, showers, etc.)
  • Restaurant
  • Retreats you host
  • Spa and spa services
  • Tea room
  • Vehicle charging station
  • Weddings
  • Wine collection or tours
  • Yoga

Contact us today so we can set up your own personalized business strategy to unlock your B&B’s greatest potential. We help bed and breakfasts become more profitable as well as grow their social media presence and add effective blog posts that feature what makes you, and your local area, worth experiencing. We take care of marketing your bed and breakfast inn so you can take care of your guests! 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

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