Google Plus for Hotel Marketing: The Quick Guide

When Google, arguably the world’s most powerful internet company – and a company legendary for hiring the smartest engineers in the world – launches its own social network, you’d think the hotel marketing community would immediately jump on the bandwagon. We did take notice. There were only two problems:

  1. Google tried this earlier with Google Buzz – and failed
  2. We are still trying to take advantage of the opportunity on existing social networks

Many of us, while curious, were reluctant to jump head-first into this new network when it launched in June 2011. But a number of important things have changed since then, making it now a powerful tool in any hotel company’s social communications program.

In this quick guide, we’re going to look at some practical ways your hotels could use Google Plus. The genesis of this article was my conversation with Chris Brogan and the Roger Smith team (full story here), and I highly recommend you read Chris’s book, Google Plus for Business, for a complete introduction. After experimenting, testing and researching on my own over the past few months, I put together this summary of some of the most relevant issues for hotels. Let’s jump in….

Download: Guide Google Plus for HotelsDownload: Guide Google Plus for Hotels

17 Comments

There are 17 comments in this article:

  1. Great article, lot of though gone into that, thanks for sharing

  2. Pingback: Google Plus for Hotel Marketing: The Quick Guide | ReviewPro | appsgoogleplus.com

  3. Are Morch says:

    Great and informative article here Josiah.

    I am pleased to see some of early adapter Hotels use Google+ in ways that engage their audience.

    As you correctly mention Google has tried before establishing a Social Network an failed. They pulled the plug on both Google Buzz and Google Wave.

    I had the opportunity the talk to one of team member from the Google Travel Team just before they pulled the plug of Google Buzz. And no doubt that is crucial market segment for Google.

    And they wanted to be part of influencing the Hospitality Market Segment.

    It is no doubt that with Google+ that have taken one step in the right direction to focus on Touch Points that will add value for the Hotel Family.

    Both the Circles and Hangouts is two great elements to add value to customer storytelling. And there is a lot of great ways to set up special interest groups.

    And with +1 share button and G+ widgets we also experience great SEO/SMO sparks.

    So it is crucial to implement a proper strategy in place that take advantages of the great touch points that Google+ provides.

    As Google+ continue to grow we will see even more valuable tools applied.

    Chris Brogan was most definitive an early adopter when it comes to Google+. He also was at one time an advocate for Google Wave. Even if Google pulled the plug on this project Chris was very early able to see the potential for Google+.

    I have not got his Google+ book yet, it was released around when Google launched Google Pages so I am a little unsure how much this is adressed in the book. But I have some of the books Chris has written so I am aware of that he primarily focus on principles that will add value for your brand.

    Cheers…

    Are Morch
    Hotel Blogger

    • Josiah Mackenzie says:

      Thank you for stopping by, Are!

      I’d be fascinated to know how your conversation went with that person from the Google travel team. They obviously want to become a key player in the travel industry, and it looks like they’re approaching this from many different angles.

      I think you summarized well the core benefit of Google+ for hotels: it’s all about storytelling. Specifically, more relevant storytelling (circles) in a more personalized format (hangouts). The key to taking full advantage of any social network is to tailor the content strategy to meet the specific features that network has. Since Google Plus seems to be a very visual medium, I’d like to see more hotels using great photos and video there as their primary way to communicate.

      Cheers,
      Josiah

  4. Pingback: 5 artículos relevantes sobre marketing y social media | El blog de David Chávez s

  5. Paul Welling says:

    Interesting points made in this article.
    I am an ‘early adopter’ with my hotel booking agency business on google + and am looking at the best ways to use it to gain advantage over my competitors. This article has some good tips and hints.

  6. RJ Marquez says:

    I wish I could +1 this article.

    • Edwina says:

      That’s a good point, RJ, we should definitely fix that! I’ll add that to our website improvements to do list.

      Have a great day,
      Edwina (ReviewPro)

  7. Are Morch says:

    Hi again Josiah.

    I got to talk a lot about Google Buzz and Google Wave. At that time they had already pulled the plug of Google Wave and there was rumors of pulling the plug of Google Buzz.

    Google also tried some Social Bookmarking that was not a huge success.

    So I was interested to learn some of the aspects of what Google had in store for Social Media & Hospitality.

    And obviously they was working on Google Hotel Finder & Google+ at the same time. Though they released GHF and the Google +1 button before they launched Google+. And as we know they just started with providing G+ Profiles first. Then they rolled out G+ Pages.

    Google is just awesome and I fairly confident that we will continue to see Google integrate more of their platforms together with G+.

    I checked out Diaspora and So.cl but they are just to noisy with scattered images at the moment. For images I prefer Pinterest. I enjoy images, but it is a bit overload at the moment.

    By the way to you have this article in PDF format?

    I will start working on a G+ report for Hotels soon.

    Cheers..

    Are Morch
    Hotel Blogger

  8. Martin Page says:

    I am struggling to see how to use Google+ differently from Facebook. We currently post identical stuff on both sites. As I do not think that there is any overlap between the pople that follow us on the 2 sites it is not really an issue at the moment, but I do feel that it is a case of doing Google+ because we have to.

  9. Gabor Kluka says:

    Thank you Josiah,
    Great and helpful article.

  10. Pingback: The Lodging Resource Newsletter Issue #12, April 2012 | Chefforfeng's Weblog

  11. Pingback: Google Plus for Hotel Marketing: The Quick Guide | ReviewPro | digitalfrogme

  12. Pingback: 10 Consejos para Mejorar la Experiencia de tu Hoteles en Google+ | El Blog de José Facchin

  13. Pingback: 10 Consejos para Mejorar la Experiencia de tu Hotel en Google+ | El Blog de José Facchin

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